Thursday, September 07, 2006

To Work or Not to Work

I have recently been pondering the question-"Should I continue to work outside the home or should I find something that I can do from home?"

I currently work part-time at a local scrapbook store. I really do love my job. I love that I can get out of the house and get a break from "mothering" for a few hours a week. On average, I work close to 20 hours a week. I've been doing it for 2 years. But it's getting harder and harder.

I don't mind being gone from the house. But my husband's job has changed and it's meaning more hours away from home. That means more late nights, which interfere with my work schedule. And since I make only $7.50 an hour, it doesn't seem practical to pay a babysitter $5 an hour to watch my kids while I'm gone.

So I've been thinking. Is there anything out there that I can do from home? Now I've tried the direct sale thing. I sold Mary Kay in college. A big flop. A few years after college I sold Arbonne. This was actually a really awesome product, but kind of expensive. And now that I'm a stay at home mom, I don't really know too many people who can afford to drop around $100 or more on a skin care program. And right after I had Emma, I sold Pampered Chef. I did really really well with Pampered Chef. I was selling around $1,000 a month or so. And I enjoyed being up in front of people and selling the product. But then we moved to a new city. And in this new city, I knew absolutely no one!!!! My sales dried up pretty quickly.

Well it's 2 years later and I now know a ton of people in this town! So I'm wondering, should I try something like this again? I've tossed around Tastefully Simple (gourmet foods) and Memory Works (scrapbooking supplies). It seems like if I was going to do something, that the fall would be the time to get started. I could market Christmas gifts, etc.

Another thing I'm thinking about is trying to come up with something to sell or offer on my own. I've started scrapbooking for other people and I do enjoy it. I currently have a customer who is using me to scrapbook her daughter's life. Her daughter is 7 yrs old, and we are starting at the beginning, so there is a lot of business there. I just don't know if I could get enough clientel to make it profitable. I charge $15 for a 2 pg spread, and that includes supplies. Since I spend about 2 hrs on each layout, I'm still not making much.

So what do you all think? What are your ideas and suggestions! I would love your comments, ideas, suggestions, and opinions. Thanks!!!!


Sammy said...

I love the idea of starting your own scrapbooking business-you know I need it! I guess you would need to figure out some basic layouts that you can repeat over and over for different subjects and become really fast at-to make your time worth the money! If that doesn't work right away or fast enough, it sounds like you really loved and were great with Pampered Chef, why not do that again since you now know lots of people!

pandacanup said...

it seems like working outside the home is getting to be worth more trouble than good. it's great to have an outlet thought--and you've become great at scrapbooking. maybe scrapbooking for your own clientele is a good thing to keep up. you can use this as your outlet and when you have more demand, you can up your rates..hehe!! meanwhile, i've always thought you must have a gift for sales. i on the other hand, couldn't sell something for free!! i think you could turn a bigger profit marketing a product. (use your blog!!!)
we love you guys,
kisses to emma and ella,

marlise said...

It sounds like you're leaning toward working from home. My thought is that you could sell Pampered Chef and keep designing pages for other people at the same time. You did great with Pampered Chef and enjoyed it. PC would give you some time out of the house and possibly some connections for scrapbooking.
The possible problem here: Do you lose a store discount on scrapbooking products? If that's an issue, then maybe selling Memory Works would be better. I think the fall is definitely a good time to start, though.

P.S. It's been forever since our last visit, but I'm in the Midwest again. I'd like to try to get to your area some weekend in the near future.