Can you believe it’s the weekend already? This week has sped past in a flurry of sweat and heatwave induced lethargy. I always marvel that while we are laying on top of the sheets, praying for it to cool down enough to sleep, there are people on the other side of the world shivering in blizzard conditions.
I wanted to talk to you a little about Red Boot Quilts. My business name registration renewal came up over the Christmas break and I had to stop and think about whether I wanted to renew for another term.
It’s difficult making a living from this profession, especially as a small independent designer, and I’m facing the reality that I may have to give it up and get a job with a regular pay cheque. I need that regular pay cheque as much as you all do. Piracy, illegal sharing, and the sheer amount of free patterns and block-of-the-month projects are eroding the viability of this profession.
I’ve had a good run, I’ve had over 30 patterns published in magazines, designed quilts for stores and for a fabric company, and have written a book. Unfortunately none of these things ever paid enough to (help) pay the mortgage.
Writing Happy Quilts was a brilliant experience, and thanks to you all it has been No. 1 bestseller in it’s category four times on Amazon. I worked seven days a week for more than a year on the book and it left no time for anything else. I was exhausted at the end and I used all my savings paying for the materials used; the horrendous postage costs alone came to over $2500. At the end of the process I was $7000 in the red.
Despite selling very well, I don’t think I’ll ever see a royalty cheque. I’ve crunched the numbers on the print run and by the time the publisher is paid all that is owing, there won’t be anything left for me. Realising that was a big kick in the pants and 2016 saw me miserable, broke, and creatively spent.
So here I am, it’s 2017, and I’m contemplating my Business Name Renewal notice. I hope you will be happy to know that I ticked the right boxes and renewed for another term. I’m giving Red Boots another chance. I don’t know how long I can hang on before heading out to get a regular pay cheque, but I’ll try.
I still feel the thrill of working with fabric. I enjoy what I do, love it most of the time, and loathe it very occasionally. It can have great highs and deep lows, but I get to meet a lot of very lovely people. Like you.
Happy quilting, love to all, toni xx