Item 3 on my starting out series is about classified ads. These can bring you business in some communities but it is essential to allow them to run regularly not just once or twice. This can get expensive in a large city even small ads. I found that the small weekly newspapers were less expensive and the ads were visible for an entire week instead of just one day. Naturally, the ads must be brief but you definitely want it to be interesting. If there is a product that seems popular, start ...
I finally got back to doing some woodworking yesterday. I had finished drawing this pattern up last week and got it cut out, but it seemed that I was in several other directions the past several days and it was kind of woven in between all the other things I was doing. It is a simple design by my own standards, and I had mixed feelings about it. I find however that every design doesn’t have to be complex to be successful, and I think it will have a wide appeal. After seeing it fin...
Well, I suppose winter isn’t over yet. What started to be a sunny and relatively warm day yesterday turned overcast and cold. We even got another layer of snow. Nothing substantial though, just a reminder that we aren’t done with the cold weather quite yet. When I took my walk last night, the winds were swirling from all directions. The sky was mostly clear then, and even though there was light snow falling, you could see what seemed like thousands of stars in the sky. It wa...
Yesterday went by far too quickly. I don’t know how or why time seems to go by so fast, but it does. I see more and more grass through the banks of piled snow and you can just feel the air changing again. Winter is nearly over (now that wasn’t so bad, was it?) and we are definitely moving in the direction of Spring. Soon we will be getting to my least favorite part of the year – that muddy, dirty transition between winter snow and spring. This year though, I don’...
I’m going to interrupt this series with an important, unlisted item. Accurate and up-to-date accounting is critical to the success of any business, including woodworking. This can be a problem if you’re like me and dislike the tedium of accounting for your business activities. I’ve always done my own accounting using Quickbooks and now my own taxes using TurboTax Online. While that has worked out fairly well, my lack of accounting knowledge means that I fail to take full adv...
Item two involves notifying everyone you know about your new business. Before starting this I would make up some business cards that clearly state the work you do. Make them clean looking and avoid anything that might confuse people about the work you do. I have made some excellent cards on my computer using simple software and biz card stock but you can also purchase them and even get some for the price of shipping from a company called VistaPrint.com. Once you have the cards, start by fa...
I had taken the weekend off from the boards to regain my brain power for another week at work and time in the shop. I was wishful that the sawdust ferry had solved some of the problems with the cupping of the board but no luck. I took the boards to my somewhat trusty belt sander with 80 grit and began to bring down the cups and smooth out the glued up edges. I was concerned with the sander because it gouged that last boards I did and it took a considerable amount of time to fix them. I then ...
Let’s start with item number one, what to use for shop space. Obviously, the best thing would be if you owned a shop space such as your garage or some other out building. This would certainly be less costly than renting even a small space. However, it may not be viable in a subdivision with deed restrictions, where you may not be able to conduct any business from your home. Or, it is possible that there are noise restrictions precluding the use of woodworking machines. Check all that ou...
I got a large amount of work done yesterday, although it isn’t very exciting to write (or read) about. In preparation for my back up, I wanted to organize my computer and get everything where it belongs. I do this every month or so, but when I am really doing a lot of work it is very easy to have lots of files out of place. The biggest culprit is my “New Pictures” file. This is where I initially collect my reference photos for drawing. I usually use several photos at ...
As a writer on the woodworking business, I am always reading everything I can find about various ways to operate such a business. That’s why I have been avidly reading all of Jim Hamilton’s posts on getting started and Sawblade1’s efforts to get his business going. These posts contain valuable information and reading them has motivated me to address some of the methods I used to get started years ago in hopes they might also be of help. I won’t bore you with the det...
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