Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Money, Money, Money

I've been thinking about writing this post in ages but I wasn't sure there was an appetite for reading it.  There have been some posts I've read on social media in recent weeks that have made me feel otherwise   Not everyone wants to talk about income.  I remember going to a thirty-something dinner party with my husband a few years back when the conversation was about mortgages and babies as that was the life stage we were all at.  Everyone was happy to talk about their interest rates, household costs and sleepiness nights with babies, then Damian mentioned income and the room fell silent,  no one wanted to talk about what they earned, it was taboo.

  
I don't earn a lot and I am self employed so it varies annually depending on how successful the year has been financially. I live a modest life, one car, small house, not much in the way of holidays.  The majority of my income comes from running music classes for children 0-5 years.  Its a rewarding job- I love teaching, music and working with babies, toddlers and preschoolers.  It is also a tiring job- imagine throwing a children's party multiple times each week and welcome to my world.  A small percentage of my income comes from sewing and blog related activities:  book contributions,  magazine work, a little teaching, and Sew-Ichigo PDF patterns.  In addition I do sewing related work that is unpaid- general goodwill in return for goods that I like or just goodwill.  I am just prepping my accounts for my self- assessment deadline in January 2015 so it is a good time to examine how I earn money through sewing, and how much I earn.


Writing a book
When Lynne and I wrote 500 Quilt Blocks it started as a publisher's commission and Lynne asked me to write with her.  The title was part of a series of 500 books.  We got to tweak the format a little but were bound by the book size and layout and worked within those limitations.  We were paid a fixed fee split into three instalments rather than by royalties.   We wrote it in a very short space of time- three months to write and sew everything in the book.  Time limits like this can be the worst aspect of writing a book.  The deadlines are decided in advance by the publisher: photographers  are already booked, the first print run has been timetabled, shipping dates have been arranged so creativity has to work to these strict limits.  After the writing, we had a tortuous three months of proofing when there is a constant back and forth of long PDF documents to work through and correct and strange questions and requests to deal with.  We gave up a lot of family time- the twenty projects had to be made first and they were made in four weeks over Christmas whilst also getting started on the 500 blocks. The amount we earned was modest but overall it was worth it.  I like collaborating and Lynne was great to work with. We kept our sanity during a stressful time because we had each other to turn to, get a reality check and let off steam.  Ultimately, there is nothing quite like opening a package with your own book inside.  Would I write another book?  It would take a lot for me to do it alone but with someone else, possibly.  You need to be prepared for some big sacrifices in terms of family time when you write and I am not sure that is something I want to give up at the moment.  Being paid fixed fee meant that once the book was written our duties were complete:  we didn't have to worry about publicity, blog hops and royalties and that was a relief.


Contributing to a Book
Its always an exciting and ego-boosting day when an email arrives telling you how great your work is and would you like to be in someone else book.  Compared to writing your own book there are many pluses to being a contributor to someone else's.  Usually, you contribute a single project so the time commitment is a lot less. However the payment value is low.  For me it has always been paid by a fixed fee and at around £100 per project and that you have to pay for your own materials.  I like to chose my own mix of fabrics but you could choose to approach a supportive shop and ask them supply the fabrics in return for a mention.  If you are in the UK or Europe where quilting fabric is £12-£16 a metre, the cost of making a project, especially a quilt adds up.  If you have a quilt professional quilted by a long armer, you could easily end up with a project that cost you more to make that you are being paid.  I've worked with American publishers and had to pay my own mailing costs are £20 or more.  The exchange rate can work against you and you usually end up been paid via Paypal and so more money is lost in changing currency and receiving money.  The time scale for the whole process is long.  The last book I contributed to has not been published and I completed the work at the start of this year.   There is usually the bonus of receiving a few copies of the finished book which you can give to friends and family or sell to others to boost your contributor income.  I contribute to books when I feel I am a good fit for the book concept or I have an appropriate project idea very quickly that I would like to see through and make. There are times when I've turned down contributing to a book because I don't feel like its a good fit- I may not know the author, editor or publishing house, the style might be too basic and beginner focused for the sort of project I like to work on, it might be with a restricted range of fabrics or the timeline is tight or during school holidays.

  
Writing for Magazines
There's been a huge growth in UK sewing magazines in the last year or so, this has become a handy way to earn money and see your work in print.  The turn around is  relatively quick: I am currently working on something now that will come out in April.  Payment comes once the magazine is published.  Magazines will agree a price with you and in my opinion they pay fairly and can be negotiated with, although if you make a quilt, your costs are always going to be high when offset against the project fee.  The downside is the magazine itself only lasts a month so your content has a limited life span.  I have written for Love Patchwork and Quilting and Quilt Now and I have something in the pipeline for another magazine.  I try not to do projects too frequently for any particular title- I don't want people to tire of my style or ideas and I don't have a huge amount of time to play and develop ideas.  Magazines are hungry for content, every month they have 100 pages to fill.  You need to be able to deliver:  this means writing to deadlines and the specified format,  finishing everything on time, taking quality photographs and designing an aspirational project that others will want to make.


Teaching
Although I started off as a primary teacher, I have limited experience of teaching regular sewing classes.  There is a saturated market for teaching sewing classes locally and they tend to be taught by shop owners and their employees.   I also don't want to work in the evening which is when most people want a sewing class.  I have taught for Fat Quarterly Retreat and been paid for it: ultimately this usually goes towards the costs of travelling to London and accommodation.  They pay what they can afford and I always have a great time at retreat.

Selling PDF Patterns
Penny and I design and sell Sew-Ichgio patterns together through Craftsy, our blog shop and Etsy.  We have both had other commitments over the last year or so with book writing and the pattern sets take a long time to complete but it is an ongoing endeavour and we are grateful for a steady stream of people buying our patterns through the different outlets.  This is one of my most reliable income streams when I look at it spread over a financial year.  New material is coming next year.

Available in Sew-Ichigo shop!
Sponsorship
I limit my sponsors to three at the moment.  I want to enjoy what I write and three sponsor posts a month is enough for me and I am guessing for you too.  Each post takes around 2-3 hours to collate, write and edit and in addition to the post I need to keep an eye on my stats and ensure that my blog is an active, regularly visited place for the sponsors.   I have a good relationship with each of my sponsors and huge respect for the work and investment that they put into their shops.   I tend to be paid by goods.  It means that I can sew more and I get to experience the shops as a consumer. I could opt for a money payment and have more sponsors but the income is limited and I don't consider it worthwhile: I do not want to become just a market place.  I have an affiliate income from Craftsy.  I have enjoyed all the Craftsy classes I have taken so I am happy to endorse what I have used.  They pay in dollars so I have to pay £10 conversion on each payment that they send out.  I don't tend to use other affiliates.  I have yet to earn any money through Amazon affiliate links so  I only do add them when I can be bothered!

318 Patchwork Blocks Sewn for Quilt Now magazine  issue 5
All other work is unpaid.  Blog hops sometimes involve a freebie- a book, some fabric, and some don't.  Why do I do them?  I chose the ones I like and fit with my style.  Sometimes it is supporting a friend like Lori Holt and her books for Sew Emma.   Or it might be patterns for Fat Quarterly because I consider Brioni, Tacha and Lynne as friends and I respect what they do.  I've worked with Fat Quarter shop and Oakshott a few times- they ask nicely, have lovely products and are generous with what they send.  I do get a lot of blog emails from companies that don't ask so nicely, want to send things I am not so keen on or think that blog traffic is sufficient benefit for me to give up hours of my free time to promote them.  I always respond to requests but I don't always say yes.  Blog traffic is good.  If you have sponsors, you need to keep a consistent level of clicks and visits to your blog.  However, the balance has to be right, especially if I am working for free.  I confess, I need to think more carefully before committing to unpaid work.  The fear of being left out of the loop is too bigger factor in my saying yes and for the sake of my own creativity I need to overcome this.

Tutorial designed for Oakshott Fabrics
So what does all this add up to?  I've still got to tot up my sewing income for this financial year as it has a few months left but it has been a typical income year so far where I've contributed to a book, sold Sew-Ichigo PDF patterns and was commissioned for four magazine projects.  I would be surprised if it was much over £1000-£1200 net. Once the outgoings of fabric, patterns, notions and equipment come out of that, maybe there will be £750 left?  Its a lot of time for little money.  The previous financial year was higher because it included 500 Quilt Blocks, but that was the exception.  I spend many of my weekends meeting deadlines for paid and unpaid work, with more unpaid than paid.  Paid work often needs to be sought out.  You need to develop ideas and present them to magazines, publishers etc Blogging is time consuming and is often quietly received.  I could post a pretty picture on Instagram and get lots of likes, comments and instant gratification, or I can write a blog post and many might read it but only a handful will comment- such is the way of blog consumption,  and the restrictions of tablets and smart phones.  I am hugely grateful for those of you who jump through the hoops of your device and manage to leave a comment.  Why do I do all of it?  I do it because I love sewing, I enjoy engagement with others in the sewing world.   A hard look at the figures has made me think I need to spend less time sewing for free/return for goods as this takes up most of my time at the moment.  Instead I need to work on Sew-Ichigo more!


I don't have a magic solution.  There are other ways to earn money like making and selling goods through craft fairs or Etsy. They take time and organisation and you need to consider your market carefully.  You need to produce what people want to buy which is not always an easy thing to discern. I never planned an income in sewing.  My blog was not a strategic book pitch and sewing is first and foremost my hobby and I love it.  I have turned away some money opportunities because I don't want to become an entirely commercially focused blog- it just does not interest me and the rewards are not sufficient.   If you do want to be published, it certainly helps to specialise. I am not a single issue sewer- I make lots of things, quilting and clothing which is not really what a publisher wants, I am not an instant package or an easy brand to instantly pitch. I am not criticising the path of others, just explaining my own choices.  There is no easy or guaranteed way to earn money in sewing and craft.  I don't know where the big money is or if there is big money for an individual to earn in the sewing industry.  I know a lot of people working very hard, often on multiple enterprises, for a modest amount- that's the reality.  

To read open debate on income and sewing as a business, I thoroughly recommend Abby Glassenberg's blog, 'While She Naps'
Abby Glassenberg: Working for Free

Discussion on the financial realities of writing a craft book:
Crafty Pod:  Is it Worth it to Write a Craft book?

A blog series on Craft Books and Publishing including:
Part 1: Behind the Scenes in the Craft Book Industry
Part 2: Budgets and Marketing: Interviews with craft book publishers

To read about how copying in fabric designs can impact elsewhere read Anna's (Eternal Maker) on Copying and Fabric Design

With all the above posts, the comments are well worth reading and give a range of thoughts and opinions.

What are your thoughts?

sib blog




44 comments:

  1. I found this post really interesting, thanks for taking the time to write it and be so honest. I've been steadily increasing my sewing work, contributing to magazines etc for the last couple of years with the hope of doing it more as a 'proper job' once my youngest starts school next year. Reading this and some of Abby's posts on the subject, whilst if I'm honest are a little disheartening, is helping me be realistic in my plans. To know that sewists/designers whose work I really admire and whose blogs I follow find it tough to make it pay is a real eye-opener.
    Thanks again

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    1. There's money to be earned but it's definitely low and erratic and you have to hunt it out! There's an element of luck, drive as well as talent

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  2. You are so right nobody likes to talk about what they earn and some companies forbid staff from disclosing this information. I wish their was more honesty as I'm sure whether self employed or employed, many people thinks everyone around them is earning more and having an easier time of it.

    I also think you're very wise to not do too much for any one magazine. I've never been a magazine fan but do subscribe to one now. I am thinking of cancelling subs because I've never made anything from it yet and it does feel like a huge portion of it is by the same people often rehashing the same old stuff - lovely as it is. With so much available online it must be so hard to find a market for magazines these days. The most disheartening thing I find is that few are prepared to pay the true value of something that's made. I guess it doesn't help that there is so much competition now and those non makers have no idea how much materials alone cost. This is the reason I've never wanted to make quilts or bags and try and earn a living from it!

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    1. Its a tough one for designers/magazines. I can see it from both perspectives- the regular income for the designers and the reliable contributor for the magazine, and then for the consumer, the need to keep it fresh. Tough!

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  3. thanks so much for this post - after reading Abby's post and discovering just how little fabric designers make made me think about all the other amazing quilters and sewists and wondering how they make money - sounds like they maybe don't !! thanks so much for your honesty - I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person who dreams about sewing and quilting as a full-time job but as you show, the reality is very different !

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    1. I've dreamt of it too but then I like sewing partly because it is not my main job- if i want to sew something frivolous, ultimately I can and I don't think I want to lose that choice.

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  4. It's great post Kerry, and very honest too. Thank you. We don't always set out to be a business but it just sort of happens, and doing the calculations is always an eye opener for me, of what pays each year, what had hidden value rather than a monetary one, and where the regular work comes from. I personally think we have to love what we do for it to balance with our lives and family too.

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  5. Thank you for a really honest and brave post. Having read some of the others as well, I can't help wondering where all the money is being made in a booming industry. I guess what it has helped me realise is that the growth has come from people putting a lot of stuff online for free. I learned mainly from tutorials although I buy a lot of books as well. The people who give that content for free aren't the ones making the money and it's given me things to consider about my own comsuming habits. What a shame that those people who have contributed so much aren't benefiting as much as they deserve.

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  6. I am intrigued too about where all the money goes in this industry. Quilting is just a hobby for me, but it is an expensive one, and I think of all the lovely bloggers, book writers, fabric designers who make my hobby so enjoyable and who have taught me so much and who seem to be benefiting so little from all their effort.

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  7. Very good read, Kerry. It's interesting how this industry works....the folks making money aren't the creative ones (unless they happen to own the fabric company). When I began my blog, I didn't realize there was money through sponsorship. It takes someone very disciplined and regularly blogging to take on sponsors. I think you are so correct to limit the number. If I could add just one other piece to this puzzle....teaching for a fabric shop. As a teacher, you are sub-contracted and, in my experience, paid a percentage of the cost of your class. That can be quite a bite out of your paycheck....like a 40% chunk. Students don't realize that nearly half the cost of the class goes to the shop. The take home percentage is fine if the class is full, but if it isn't full or a student drops out at the last minute.....your take home takes a dive. Then at the end of the year when you pay small business taxes, your take home percentage drops again! In the end, I would take home the same or less than the shop owner. And that doesn't take into account the teaching materials, samples, and travel expense. I Loved the students and teaching, but it just wasn't worth it.

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  8. What a thought provoking post. I love reading your blog and always do, you have a great writing style and I love what you sew, I have never commented before but will make more of an effort now.

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  9. Great post Kerry :) I can't imagine making a living from this industry but I do love that I can fund my fabric addiction by doing something that, on the whole, I love :)

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  10. great, honest post, Kerry! I can relate to so much that you said. I remember reading comments on a very popular quilter/blogger's about how she should make a tutorial and free pattern for a specific project she was working at the time. And that she should do this because of "all" of this income she is earning from blog sponsors. The comment was not well received because the commenter was completely rude and also I think most people realize that most bloggers are not making a living from sponsors. That goes the same for contributing to projects, etc. It's most often for free. I enjoy doing it though because the on-line quilting community is really the only place I have to share with like minded people. There is always that age old question...How to make income by doing what you love? It really puts the term "starving artist" into perspective. I know that is a bit dramatic but I also know that there are some in our community that work their tail off, doing what they love, and are not making a significant income. Also with book writing, you hit the nail on the head with the sacrifice it takes. It demands so much time, as it should, but while writing you often aren't sure what the financial gain will be until well after that major time investment and as we know particularly as we get older, time is far more precious than money.
    Just want to say I am grateful to you and the other friends I've made that take the time to craft, blog and share. The camaraderie and inspiration are immeasurable!!! xo Erin

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  11. I enjoyed reading your post. Thanks so much for sharing information that is not often discussed. There seems to be a big discrepancy in profits from blogs in different industries. I read a popular cooking blog that is very transparent about their income each month from their blog, and I am shocked by how profitable their blog has been. I only sew for fun, but it is interesting to learn more about the business side of the industry.

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  12. Very thoughtful post. As a new quilter with limited access to shops and classes (I live on a boat), I'm a voracious internet learner. Blogs and videos are my primary teachers. I really appreciate the work and care that goes into a good tutorial or pattern. Thank you for what you do.

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  13. Like many other folks I have often dreamed of making a living at my sewing machine. Reading all the recent blogs posts on how the industry works has been very eye opening. It's sad to know that so much of the money spent on quilting and sewing doesn't actually make it into the hands of the creators.

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  14. Great post - really enjoyed reading it. Trying to cover it all to make a living does take a lot of time away from creating/sewing and your family. I'm not planning on giving up the day job anytime soon, covering the costs of my materials would be my aim and learning to find a balance between creating, blogging and just relaxing!

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  15. Very interesting Kerry, I've only been sewing for about two years and find it an enjoyable and very rewarding hobby, but find it very hard to say no when friends and relatives ask me to make them things. As you know quilting and sewing are very time consuming and good quality materials aren't cheap, but people don't seem to understand this, so I can completely understand that you sew for 'love not money' I previously designed a few projects for craftstamper and had to sign an agreement not to disclose how much money I was paid for an article. For writing the article taking step step photos and posting of the finished project it was very little money for a lot of work. It was great to see my projects in print and made me immensely happy, but it would never be a great way to earn a wage and I found the writing of the article quite stressful. I love quilting as a hobby albeit a rather expensive one. I always enjoy visiting your blog as I love the variety and inspiring projects, and appreciate the time it takes to write your tutorials xx

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  16. Thank you for sharing so much in this post. It is interesting how the work of quilters is valued, or not valued, in the industry by both those who are the "industry" and those who are the quilters and ultimate purchasers of the work.

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  17. Thanks Kerry, this has been on my mind recently too... x

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  18. I have been thinking of out to make (some) money out of my hobby - only to come to the conclusion that I also like the idea of making what I want, and therefore will carry on relying on my day job - which of course takes time away from sewing/knitting. But maybe that is not the point, I like sharing, making new things and seeing some of my patterns made by others! It is really rewarding - especially when your day job is not so creative!

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  19. Great post Kerry, I think you have the right approach to your sewing and contributions, only doing what fits you. I personally really love the books that have lots of contributors as I feel you get a good broad range of styles and projects!
    Can't wait to see whats coming out from Sew-Ichgio next year.

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  20. Great post.

    I think sometimes we undervalue our work though; we make and sell at a price we consider fair, the price of fabric and little extra for the effort, but people will pay so much more than we would ever imagine.

    We shy away from charging what non-crafty folks will happily pay; perhaps we need to look further afield, in circles in which we do not normally mix!

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  21. Hi Kerry, I very much appreciated this post. It is so interesting to read how and why you work, and also the little that comes from it in terms of financial rewards. Unfortunately it doesn't surprise me too much! I actually notice the time you out into your sponsor posts, often I don't pay attention to sponsor news but I do generally read yours as I'll often spot something I didn't know of or find a fabric to add to a 'want' list! I posted a link to the Eternal Maker fabric copying post yesterday - that was something I was in blissful ignorance of but which I hope more people will become aware of. Juliex

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  22. Wonderful post Kerry, fascinating if a little sad. I guess the answer really is that there isnt a full time living to be had sewing unless you are prepared to seriously overwork. I think without the passion for making and the friendship and community most of us have found there might not be much sewing going on!

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  23. A very thought provoking post. Sadly it is very difficult to make a living from this and the hours needed really don't add up. I'm hoping that slowly things are changing in that more people will appreciate the effort and pay a fair price for patterns etc but it's a slow and uncertain process. Discussions like this are really important

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  24. I like all these thought-provoking posts

    To make money in the sewing world, you have to diversify.
    A lot of people say patterns are the most reliable income source. Books, however, have a longer shelf life than your blog. You have to constantly reassess what you want from this endeavor.
    I've always been happy to garage sale to find vintage sewing gear and then re-sell it to fund my hobby. But to actually quit my day job...with the benefits.....
    I think you are wise to have a presence on all social media, know when to say no, and when to jump in with both feet.
    I hope you keep blogging as I enjoy yours immensely.

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  25. I have read Abby's posts about money and was interested to read your own. What Abby said made me think about my own blog and whether I should accept goods in exchange for blogging about what I make with them. I have no wish to earn and income from my blog - I simply couldn't cope with the stresses involved - but neither do I want to prevent anyone else earning income. On balance, I think I have to go with my conscience. I try to make my blog accessible to new and beginner stitchers. My tutorials are aimed at people who need a lot of hand-holding and I put my hand up to mistakes that I make. I have accepted goods just a few times and usually I give away the items that I make with those goods - sometimes that is because I have made something specifically for those beginners and it is something I don't even want. I hope that the small amounts that I receive do not impinge on other bloggers' ability to earn money from their blogs - I don't think it does.

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  26. What an interesting and honest article. I think we can all get caught up looking at blogs and then daydreaming about how lovely it would be to sew full-time. It's really brave of you to be so honest and remind everyone of all the hard work that goes into sewing when it becomes a job! Thank you.

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  27. Interesting article and I'm not very surprised to hear there's little money in what you do. I sew because I love it, from the inspiration to the fabrics, the patterns, the mistakes through to the finished product. I make and sell quilted goods to benefit my favourite animal charity, using quality quilting cottons, I donate the materials as well as my time and only charge a price that would cover the basic fabrics, still people think this is expensive so I feel there's a lack of understanding and appreciation of handmade goods. Luckily I live a modest life and can afford to sew for fun, I find it hard to imagine many people in the industry are rolling in money. Well done on doing what you do, your blog is one of my favourites.

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    1. That's hard having to justify a fair price when you are already providing time and materials to make goods as a charity fund raiser, and as you say, I can't imagine anyone I know in the industry rolling in money.

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  28. Very interesting post, I'm making an effort to comment! Digital patterns seem to be the way of the world at the minute, so I'm glad they work for you, even if the turnover is quite small, the profit is high and the availability is never going to run out. I worry about the book market because practically every blogger with 1000 readers or more has written one so it's hard to see how sustainable that will be in the future, especially if digital patterns continue to rise in popularity. It's also worthwhile to mention that magazines charge differing amounts. I can get paid double by magazine 1 than magazine 2, and then I can get paid another 50% by magazine3, depending on their readership. Some pay a fixed amount per page, some provide fabric and pay a bit less, it's all very changeable.

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  29. Really a great read. I know the ups and downs of handmade things. I had a handcrafted jewelry business for a while ~ it's a lot of work and while I made a fairly good income from it, it was all I did. My family was sort of ignored and my social life was pretty much at a stand still. I'm glad I did it tho, I hardly ever make jewelry anymore. That's the down side.
    I'm so glad you blog, it's my most favorite, and make sweet patterns ~ I truly appreciate and value your work!

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  30. Abby's posts are always must reads for me. They are encouraging and steadying and allow for an honest look into money, planning and the making industry. I wouldn't mind searching out ways to make money for my creativity but I'm researching while I make "for fun" so I can be more mindful and aware of the realities.

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  31. I'm so glad to have read this post - it's such an eye-opener. Thank you for writing so candidly and revealing the harsh reality of the sewing and quilting industry. Here's hoping your self-assessment is larger next year!

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  32. What an interesting post. I read right through to the end. I blog only for my own interest and not as a business. I read blogs for advice, interest and inspiration. Sometimes I click through to sponsored links, sometimes I don't. I have stopped following several blogs that were too sponsor heavy- they just got too boring to read. Thank you for striking the right balance with your blog. It would seem no-one is going to make a fortune from this industry

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  33. Great post Kerry - thank you for sharing your thoughts. I'm pretty much in the same boat. It took several years of making things for free so that others could profit, (i.e. book and magazine contributions) until I finally got to the place where I no longer had the fear of missing out if I said "no thank you" when asked to do free work. I don't consider making quilts with "free" fabric supplied by designers or manufacturers working for free since I get to keep the quilt (and actually, I suppose I could always sell it). Luckily, my retreat business pays for my fabric purchases. Even though it did take thousands of hours of work (making, blogging, photographing) and perseverance, the exposure of working for free ultimately did help me land a book deal, I think. Truly there is no way around it though, this is not a business (hobby, passion or art) that makes people rich. We do it because we love it! I wish that society valued our work more, though. It truly breaks my heart (and makes me a little bit mad) when I see people selling bed quilts for peanuts. In general, I don't think we do ourselves any favours!

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  34. Thank you for writing such an insightful, thoughtful post. I have said for years that it is practically impossible to make any money from selling hand sewn stuff, but I secretly hoped it was possible for creative people to sell their patterns and books. Sigh. I worked at a fabric store to support my habit before I had a baby and customers (not the sewing kind, but the kind who wanted to buy the shop samples) would frequently ask to commission quilts. When I broke down what the cost of the fabric would be, how many hours a quilt takes to make, not to mention having it quilted, the majority would just gape at the expense. And then usually follow up with a comment like "but I can get a quilt for a fraction of that price from Pottery Barn!" I always enjoy your blog and if I were a fabric manufacturer or online shop owner I would bury you under a landslide of free fabric! Thanks for all your hard work

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    1. That is such a lovely thing to say! Thankyou Catherine!

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  35. Wonderful post, Kerry, thank you! Of course I'm always interested in these posts, since I'm trying to make a living from sewing as well. And I think it's good for the public at large to know just how difficult it is to make a decent wage in this industry. When I look at the amount of time I spend versus the funds coming in, it's almost laughable - good thing I love it so much! : )

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  36. Thought-provoking and informative! Thanks for taking the time to share with us all!

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  37. Thank you for such a detailed and interesting post. I'm not in the income generating part of sewing but I found this insight and the other links you shares really interesting. I really like how you talk about accepting offers that you feel "fit" well - it must be so hard to do that in this environment with the financial considerations too. But Iove that you do and it's why when I read your sponsor posts or see your contributions in magazines they really do still stand out as being very you (and of course very lovely!)
    Your comments about blogging also struck a cord with me. Computer problems mean I am almost ways on a hand held device and commenting is as you say a hoop jumping exercise. But I've missed that special interaction you get on blogs and its prompted me to look again at my own blog and remember why I started it so thank you x

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  38. Thank you for sharing your experiences, I found this a very interesting read.

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