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Rolling With The Punches

January 31, 2011

I don't know about you, but I've always been my hardest critic. When it comes to life in general (including sewing), I'm always the first one to see my mistakes.

As some of you may know, I've been out of work since the end of June 2010, with no steady architecture employment opportunities in sight, thus I've been spending my time sewing for Squirmy Worm Studio, writing patterns/tutorials, and just trying to enjoy my down time as much as possible.
However, I've recently come into a period of self-doubt when it comes to growing my business, and whether or not this is the right avenue for my creativity. I would LOVE to one day be able to make a living being crafty, but I feel as there is no reality in that idea as my perfectionism takes over (plus it takes me WAY too long to start and finish a project). I let days go by without creating anything for Squirmy Worm Studio, and it frustrates me, but not knowing what people are coming to my shop for is difficult. What if I spend all of my time making adorable Nursing Cocoons when people really want to come and buy Coffee Burlap Tote Bags?

I started Squirmy Worm Studio with the hope of spreading handmade love and hope to work through the self-doubt and continue the journey, as I have tons of beautiful fabrics that I haven't yet had the opportunity to use! :)


  1. I know what you mean! I stayed up until 4 am finishing quiet books for a craft show to only sell one the next day. You do make beautiful things with the prettiest fabric. Keep rolling ;)

  2. Candace, really your items are lovely. I think everyone is their own worst critic. As far as what to put in your shop... make the things you love to make most... if it is a tote one day and burp rags the next...whatever you want. The more you enjoy your art work the more others will enjoy it.

  3. Oh, I am my own worst critic, too. I am sure you see every wiggly stitch and NO ONE else does. Although- there's nothing wrong with doing things right! I am a bit of a perfectionist, too. I see some shoddy looking things at some craft shows and wonder who would put their name behind it. But then again, those items seem to sell just fine so who knows? The general buying public seems to value low price over high quality.

    I would say that the question of what to make is one that can only be answered by trial and error. What sells is so different from one area to another. What if you contacted the organizers of the craft shows you're attending? They would be able to steer you a bit I bet. I have heard people say to keep notebooks and after a few years you will have a better idea of what items to bring to which shows. That doesn't help in the short term, but it doesn't hurt to have extra stuff made- eventually it will sell.

  4. Hey Candice, I know what you mean. You make beautiful things. Keep your confidence. I would LOVE to make my living being crafty. Kudos for you for jumping in during this period of uncertainty for you. My husband has been unemployed for the same period of time (he's a college professor and gave up his job so I could have my job here). Hang in there.

  5. Candice, that's the one thing I have been thinking about constantly about the last two years. I am still studying but will be done soon and I would love to keep my shop. But! I don't know what people are looking for when they come to my shop (and what they want to buy!) and I don't know if I should continue with selling or just get a regular job. It is quite unusual to have two jobs here (and really complicated!) but I love having my little shop that I can sew for, plus, right now I am the one to decide when and what I am sewing.
    At times it is difficult but I think it is worth keeping that little shop and - I can only speak for myself - to look where it is going. Maybe one day I will be famous for my totes, who knows?

  6. there seems to be a lot of this self-doubt around these days. don't get down, you are awesome! i'm going to encourage you to head over to read ginger's post at weiner dog tricks. it's well written and made me realize i'm not alone in feeling like this from time to time. xo tammie

  7. Hey, we totally learn as we go.
    And we are constantly changing. PLUS it is so hard when there is so much out there to inspire and compare to.
    Hope you find your place and I hope it brings a great wave of creativity and finished products :)

  8. I know how you feel. Really, I do. One of my favorite lines from a movie is "keep moving forward". Sometimes that is all we can do is will ourselves on to another day. The craft industry IS tough, but so are YOU! You can do it, just believe!


I LOVE your comments, and read them all! Thank you! :)