What I Learned from Starting an Etsy Shop (like math is hard and friends are fun)

Like I shared last week in this post, it's been so fun to have this new creative outlet of running Wild Cedar Co. The shop opened July 2016, which means it's been nearly a year since we started this adventure! Here are (a few unexpected!) lessons I've learned this past year:

Math is hard.
Starting a shop has stretched me to use parts of my brain I don't usually. I taught high school Spanish, so the only math I had to do was calculate the curve after an enormously difficult final exam. Now, I'm thinking about what our profit margin is on each sign based on how long it took to make, what percentage of the profits goes back into the business, etc. I'm no business major, so running this little business is making me think in new ways! Pro tip: Find out how other shops do things if you feel stuck with the business side of things. 

It's rewarding to physically create something. Even if you're selling digital prints or stock photos, you're still creating SOMETHING to list and sell...and each time we finish another sign, it's so rewarding to hold it and say "look! we made this!" (It's harder to feel so accomplished when you fold laundry because you know that tomorrow there will likely be more to fold 😉 )

Make new friendships with other Etsy sellers. I probably never would have "met" or started following Danielle from Field & Sea Shop or Cristen from Woodline Crafting if I hadn't started the WCC Instagram!

Trust God & commit everything you do to him. 
Before opening the shop last July and ever since, my prayer has been that God would have his way with the entire endeavor and that it would bring him glory. Each time I'm struggling to come up with new product ideas or see our social media interactions go down, I try to stop and ask God that he would have HIS way in this entire thing. If it's meant to fizzle out or only last a season, may we encourage others to the max during that season!

Running a shop is more fun with a friend!
Courtney and I started this shop together (we're real life friends, but she also blogs here), and it's WAYYY more fun to run this small business together. We get to play to each others' strengths: she does the lettering, photography, and shipping, and I make blank signs and manage the social media side. Plus, we always have someone to bounce ideas off of! Plus. There's NOOO way I could have designed a logo like this new one on my own. Gracias as always, Courtney.

What are some of your favorite Etsy shops? What have you learned in your latest new adventures?

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