This Article is About
chain maille jewelry
new endeavor
crafts store
realistic budget
starving artist
craft store
Congratulations! You've Found You Passion! Now What?
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You've found something that you love doing and you think you're pretty good at. Congratulations!! You've found your passion!

You want to quit your nine-to-five job and spend every waking moment learning, doing, creating, reveling in your passion.

Unfortunately, unless you are willing to go the "starving artist" route, passion doesn't pay the bills and, at least for the time being, your passion must be demoted to hobby status.

That's OK. Hobbies have been known to grow and even prosper. My particular passion-turned-hobby is in the design and creation of jewelry. More specifically, chain maille jewelry and I've managed to share my pieces with co-workers and on-line to turn a profit.

I bought a small maille necklace making kit and tools at my local crafts store (it was in the clearance bin for $2.99). Several months later on a cold rainy Saturday afternoon, I came across the kit and decided to open it up and see what it was all about.

That was all it took. The next day I was back at the craft store buying everything I could find to make more pieces. This is where it started to get a little less passionate and even a little discouraging because I realized how little I really knew about chain maille making, supplies, tools, and the vast world of jewelry making.

Lesson One: Educate yourself. As much as you might want to dive right in and be creative, take the time to learn about the tools, supplies and costs of your new endeavor. Research everything! Search on-line and click every link. There is valuable information to be had on every website from the largest retailers to the smallest one person shops.

Lesson two: Set a realistic budget for yourself. Most creative endeavors can really be started on a shoestring but you have to know how long your shoestrings are before you can tie it all together. As you probably realize, this reinforces the importance of Lesson One. Whatever budget you set, being educated about your needs and available resources is imperative to making the most of that budget.

Both lessons may sound like simple common sense, which I guess it really is. But when you find yourself excited about something when the most exciting thing in you life for some time is a sale on laundry detergent, when you find yourself loving to do something and you just want to do more, when you've found your passion, common sense can mysteriously disappear.

I'm no expert on this stuff. All I know is that after my aforementioned spending spree at the craft shop I found myself elbow deep in jump rings, clasps, wires, pliers, beads and baubles and had no idea what to do with any of them.

My excitement about this great creative adventure became total confusion about where to start and how. I was frustrated because I had bought lots of things I didn't need and didn't know enough to buy the things I did need. My wallet was lighter than it need to be because I hadn't taken the time to shop around for the best deals on-line.

At that point my great "woohoo" passion was just plain old ticking me off.

Now the lessons learned have kicked in and progress is being made. I take and even make time to develop and enjoy my creativity. I know how to get what I need when I need it at the best possible prices. When I took the leap to share my designs and creations, my jewelry became and remains incredibly popular with co-workers, friends, family and even some web customers.

But most importantly, I'm on much better terms with my passion... even if it is just a hobby.

Street Talk

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