Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Hagthorn Crafts!

One of the ways I decided to celebrate Beltane this year was to open an Etsy shop!

With the blossoming of the May would come the blossoming of a new project and a committment to spending more of my time being creative and practical. It's already proving to be very practical in therapeutic ways. How practical it turns out to be in financially viable ways awaits to be seen!

At the moment it feels far from that, since the hours I'm spending creating (enjoyable as they are) can nowhere near be reflected in the financial value I have to try and fix on the finished items. I expect many people handmaking individual crafts, however professional they are, feel this way. But I struggle with the concept personally too. I think this whole area is why I've never got very far with establishing 'work' out of the various skills I've trained for. Passionate and competent as I felt about practicing iridology and reflexology and promoting natural health, when I tried to focus on setting up and promoting a 'business', that is exchanging a service or a product for MONEY, all sorts of obstacles seemed to pop up and get in the way. The lack of a focussed business attitude was not the only obstacle of course... life has a habit of throwing spokes in the wheels of well-laid plans!

I know that being fairly paid for your work, having control of your work conditions and choices, and being able to make a living out of work you enjoy, is vital to the health of a community and of society as well as of the individual. It's worlds away from the exploitation inherent in the profit-driven corporate, capitalist business model that is so damaging our planet and people right now.

So, yeah, it's important that we get to grips with how we can turn what we love doing into what can feed and house us. There's no way I have any expectations of Etsy doing this for me! However, the important thing it has already done is to kickstart me in a new direction. It's helped me to let go of those strands of intentions which have been draining my energy for so long because they always remained stuck in the list of 'things I should be doing' but which I never managed to shape into something real that worked for me. It's helped me to get back in touch with being artistically creative - making stuff! Interestingly, it's given me the sense of *legitimising* using my time in this way. Which brings up a whole new load of questions about what the 'value' and the 'permission' which we attribute to our lives is all about and what the influences on these are. About what 'work' is and within this context, even within a relatively 'free' society, what FREEDOM really means.

It also throws up questions of how I balance my creative desires with my ethical and environmental values. At the moment I'm working through the stocks of acrylic paints and materials that I currently have, but when these run out, how can I continue to paint if I can't afford to buy the eco-acrylics which will not contribute to the pollution of our planet? So, while I'm figuring out some answers I'll also continue visiting bins on windy days for the stockpiling of fabrics from broken umbrellas. I'll keep picking up interesting sticks on walks and keeping an observant eye for the many other quite randomly acquired materials I seem to be amassing in the hugely inadequate space of my home. All of which I hope to turn into suitable items for the shelves of Hagthorn Crafts!

So, while we could really do with more money coming into our household, if I end up making any pennies from my Etsy shop, it'll come as a bonus because I'm grateful for the inspiration it's provided me with - enough maybe to try out a stall sometime at a local craft market, and to remember how good it feels to be moving in a direction I feel more comfortable with.


  1. Oh! They are beautiful!! I really hope your shop is a success, it so deserves to be, you have a wonderful talent xxx

  2. Aww! Thank you so much Susie, that's very kind of you! :-) xx