Wednesday, January 22, 2014


Over the holidays, I took up a hobby of painting wood. Sounds pretty killer, no? From 11pm-2am most nights, I was honoring any lingering vestige of wanting to have a girl of my own. And also indulging in the Disney Princess culture I tend to question in terms of its impact on today's girls. (As if I have any dog in that fight...)

It all started with my wanting a wooden nativity set, scouring Etsy and finding one for over $150, and then making one myself. During the hunt for a modern Baby Jesus, I stumbled upon examples of the little peg Disney Princesses and immediately thought of the handful of little girls I know in my family as well as children of my closest friends and thought: holiday gifts! (You may have also seen my peg creations in my handmade holiday posts or on Instagram.)

So I ordered some supplies and took a stab at recreating "that which my wallet could not support."

And then my boys kept asking if I could make them peg people, but they didn't want princesses. So clearly the next step was making superhero peg guys. Of course, I looked to Etsy for inspiration because imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?  I also poured over images on Etsy and Google because lord knows I don't know the difference between ironman and wolfman, er, wolverine.)

What I found was that this wasn't the best craft for someone who is addicted to caffeine and someone who is too impatient to use or create a template (ie, I free hand it all). But I think they came out cute. And twofor? It totally felt like therapy. Me time. A way to focus some of my energy on something purely creative. Or perhaps it has been a veiled attempt at avoiding laundry. Knitting has recently left me feeling uninspired, which I think I attribute for being all "knit out" from the copious amounts of knitting I did while on bed rest that began almost a year ago!

I was surprised that so many people commented about how much they liked the little people and even asked if I would make some for them. Or open an Etsy shop. My inclination is to spend 100s of dollars of my own money in supplies and just make and ship these to all those I am friends with.  And when I win the lottery, that's the first thing I'll do right after paying off everyone in my family's mortgages and *maybe* going on a shopping spree at J. Crew.

So I've been toying around with perhaps selling them to those I know. I have zero interest in opening an Etsy shop. The pressure to produce and ship to strangers who can flame me on the internet (because in honesty, I have no formal training and no steady hand!) makes my palms sweat. And there are others who have the market covered in all honesty.

But I'm struggling with the idea of charging. On Etsy, peg Princesses range anywhere from $4 to $10 a peg (shipping not included). Of course, the skill level is not the same among offerings (and I am probably on the low end). I certainly could not make any substantial money on these given the supply cost, but with an economy of scale, if I could do a set of these for a handful of people, I was thinking I might be able to cover 1 of Miles's extracurricular classes he takes in his extended care. Every little bit counts, no?

My thought is to create a Google form, post it on my personal FB and let anyone interested in getting some fill it out. And then just say that shipping times will vary as I do this at night. I'd like to just do 1 sweep of interest, work for 5-8 weeks on production, and then see how much work/cost, etc it is. Perhaps do another batch processing around Christmas time again.

Am I rambling?

What do you think:
  • $5 a peg
  • Flat rat shipping $5.80 (Priority flat rate charge for a small box)
  • turnaround time not guaranteed
  • At this time, I would just do princesses and super heroes (I do have a friend I am doing Yo gabba gabba for and 2 I am doing personalized families...but those take a long time.)
Crazy-town, or worth it?









  1. It all sounds good to me, honey (I am not surprised you burned out on knitting after the tons of wonderful knitted items you produced). I think the price/shipping costs seem fair. Your workmanship is better than you think, and you need to be compensated for the time you spend. Are the ones you show ones you've already sent or are they ready to be purchased? Again, I think you are amazing!

  2. Yes please! We want Disney princesses, Beatles, and super hero's!! You are amazingly talented! Don't sell yourself short!

  3. It is awesome. It sounds like a fair place to start and then see what your demand curve can justify. Consider me on the list for Princesses for baby Harriet - I can be at the end of the list since she just found her hands. And you'll have to email me that Google form.

  4. WORTH. IT.

    Every penny.

    As the wife of a man who sells his creativity to pay our bills, I understand that it feels weird to ask people to pay dollah bills for something you love to do, or something you don't feel is worthy of their hard-earned money. But I can also tell you that it is necessary and important to do so. I would argue you should charge more, and if sales aren't panning out or people seem hesitant based on price, you could reduce. Do not underestimate your talent or your time.

    Charge more. And I will buy some. A family, a set of princesses and superheroes, all of the above.


  5. I totally agree. :) Definitely do it, and don't be afraid to charge a little more. They are beautiful, and the perfect type of imaginative, (and handmade!!) toy! :)

  6. I'm so glad you've decided to give this a whirl. As long as you enjoy it, that's all that matters and if you can make a little $ using your time and talent what could be better! I agree that you can certainly charge more. This is done with love by hand and your time is important. Don't sell yourself short. I have a few orders coming your way! Love you!!