I’ve been painting for the last few months, having not really picked up a paint brush for decades prior to this. It’s been enormous fun, listening to an audio book whilst playing around with colour in my sketch pad. In fact, it has given me a tentative small business idea going forward.
I know… you are on the edge of your chair, desperate to find out what it is…well, I shall tell you!
Drum roll, please!
I am thinking about selling my art in the form of greeting cards, stickers, postcards and art prints. It is something I can do from home, it may (or may not) bring in a little income for our family. And I have already been asked about whether I have ever thought about turning my art into greeting cards. So, maybe, perhaps there is a market for them…?
Greeting Card Making Business
To this end, I have been looking into the possibility of getting a government-backed small business loan. I keep oscillating between getting one and therefore having enough start up money to buy all the things I need to make the goods and send them off, and not getting one and outsourcing the printing to a print on demand shop.
I am no business woman, so the idea of borrowing money scares me. However, I also have alternating, contrasting thoughts regarding only living once, and if I don’t try I might regret it.
As you can see, this really is a very tentative small business idea!
Market Research for my Small Business Idea
I have been doing a bit of market research and I asked the advice of a business friend of mine. She owns her own (very successful) company. Her graphic designer wrote me out lots of hints and tips for starting my own Etsy shop and selling from my own website. Her consistent piece of advice was to use social media, particularly Instagram and YouTube.
I have also been watching lots of YouTube videos about people who have had similar small business ideas. There are many people who have made some money on Etsy selling cards and stickers. But for every one person who has, there are many people who haven’t.
Digital products seem to be popular but I don’t think I have the skill for those…although I have six weeks holiday coming up. I guess I could teach myself.
Could You Help Me?
I wonder if you, my readers here on angelicscalliwags, could help me? Although I’m not sure whether I will go down the small business loan route, if I do I have to show that I have done market research. I’d be really grateful if you would answer some or all of the questions below. This will give me an idea of whether there is a market for what I want to sell. Please know, I’m not asking for assurance you will actually buy. I won’t hold you to your answers!! I’d just like to know your preliminary thoughts.
Thank you in advance! ❤️. You’re all amazing!
As a reminder, here are the designs I have painted already:
I am able to digitally separate out elements and create stickers or sticker sheets. For example, I can separate the bird, the whale, the starfish and the seahorse and create stickers of each individually. I have added a simple sticker sheet I made up just now on Canva just using the birds from the giraffe picture to give you an idea:
- Do you think designs such as mine would sell? (Be honest, I’m fairly broad shouldered!)
- Do you think there is a market for these types of products (cards, stickers etc)?
- Do you ever use Etsy to buy greeting cards or stickers? Or sell? If you have experience, I’d love to pick your brains!
- Would you ever use personalised stickers and cards (ie with a child’s name)?
- How much would you be willing to pay for an A6 card, an A5 card and an A6 sticker sheet and an A5 sticker sheet?
- Would you be interested in reading about or watching/following the process of starting up a small business from home on YouTube or my website? A sort of all access pass into the design process, the making, the finances etc?
Completely Out of my Comfort Zone
On Tuesday, I visited a local craft shop in our village which sells all sorts of cards, prints, ornaments etc. My friend (the successful business woman) had been in and inquired on my behalf whether they were looking for suppliers. They said they were and for me to come in with my designs, which I did on Tuesday.
The lady I saw was very positive and asked me to come back today (Thursday) to discuss possibilities. I was a little flabbergasted actually! I am not getting too excited because it may still fall through, but just going was huge for me! And the fact they liked my designs suggests I might not be barking up the wrong tree, so to speak.
I’m going back up this afternoon. I’m not sure if I’m more scared they’ll say they want to work with me or that they’ll turn me down! It’s all very outside my comfort zone – as in waaaaay waaaay outside.
Anyway, I look forward to your answers 😊