Yep I sure am…and at least it’s something I can finally acknowledge and let go of.  For so many years I’ve created work to sell – prior to polymer it was decorative wood art, handpainted tiles, painted glassware and beading…the list goes on.

I normally do one show a year and for me, it’s more of a “catch up with old friends” than a selling event.  I normally give lots of stuff away or will give discounts – every now and then I’ll sell something for the listed price but not often – I am such a bad seller!!!

So, two hours into the show last year, I realised I didn’t want to do this anymore – no more making to sell.  I had wanted to stop “creating to sell” for a long time but making the break was such a hard thing to do because I had done it for so long.  So that was it – the Christmas show finished and so was my selling  career – yay!!  I could finally move on.

My time now is spent in the studio exploring, playing, experimenting and coming up with new ideas…and I can spend hours at a time doing this.  It’s exciting…and to know I don’t have to create to sell has “freed” me in a way I guess.

My income now is from running workshops and writing tutorials and of course the occasional sale in the home studio.  Some tutorials can take hours to write – it’s a huge process.  Add to that the hours and hours spent in the studio coming up with those ideas – well let’s just say it can be a very time consuming process.

The reason I’m telling you all this is because I get asked quite often how I do a certain technique or what inclusions I’ve used or how I managed to get “that look” and sometimes I just can’t answer, especially if I’m working on a new workshop idea or tutorial technique.  I know I’ve offended a few in the past for not giving away secrets and I’m sorry – really I am…but giving away those secrets is just like giving away the pieces I used to make to sell.  I’ve never been in this business to make heaps of money (that’s just not me) but it’s nice to make enough to buy the next stash of clay.

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LunaCastroDesignsBySherryLMHowardFran PontaDebbie CrothersKaz Recent comment authors
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I don't blame you one bit. That's where the fun is playing around and coming up with new ideas.


Bravo! I never tried to create to sell because I understood early in my life how little I enjoy that.. I have a demanding job as it is, so I choose to never make things with the objective of selling them.. Once in a while, people compliment my work and follow it with "you could sell that!". The ultimate compliment for our money obsessed world. I know they mean well, but refining my skills and discovering my artistic voice are what truely matters to me. I make jewelry to relax, not to create yet another job for myself. It is… Read more »

Fran Ponta

You are so right Debbie. Creating on demand, producing for profit, working to a brief and justifying your work, all becomes too much at some point doesn't it? There comes a time when we need to give ourselves permission to simply create and 'make' for the sheer enjoyment…to allow ideas to bubble and flow….freely….without constriction or justification, or the need for approval. Good on you, way to go Deb! (Can you tell I feel strongly about this subject?!)


Exactly Debbie, I'm the same, gift, donate, swap, barter anything but trying to sell stuff – I love experimenting, trying new techniques but I'm no sales person. I'm happy to occasionally sell a few things but would rather teach clay and other creative things – just need to seriously work on a way to do that and make a few $$ to keep me in clay & tools, glass & gas, metal and gems, and beads & thread and I'll live happily ever after 😀

Lupe Meter

Good for you! I agree with you wholeheartedly! I also stopped selling and have started to concentrate basically on creating and playing around with ideas. I feel less stressed and I actually like the time that I have to play around with different techniques and grow as an artist! I have downsized from the huge home that kept me a slave to yard work, so now I will have the time to play around more with polymer clay. Though I wish I had the money to attend workshops…perhaps that is in the future. Hugs, dear friend! I am enjoying all… Read more »

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