Shop Etsy

Quit Your Day Job: bindingbee

Aug 24, 2010

by Mary Andrews

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Megan of the The Binding Bee set up her Etsy shop while working as a full-time caregiver at a hospice. After listing a few of her hand-bound journals she started to dream of running her own creative business. Megan now works harder than ever and while continuing to explore the sustainability of her raw materials.

Tell us about your previous working situation.
When I first started The Binding Bee I was working as an in-home caregiver for a hospice patient. The work was rewarding, but I knew from the beginning that working in that intensive environment was not something I wanted to develop into a long-term career.

What sparked the business side of your creativity?
I can’t remember a time when I was not making art and large creative messes.  As a kid I was constantly creating “things,” ranging from glue and paper collages to “flower soup” concoctions with my three little sisters. I enjoyed art class in high school and went on to major in studio art in undergrad. In college I focused on using found and reclaimed materials, and for my senior thesis I created a hand-stitched quilt solely out of used teabags (600 cups of tea later).

As far as really getting into the business of creating, that happened a little over a year ago when I discovered Etsy. It was revolutionary to me that such an online community existed. I posted a few of my handmade journals and sold one within a few days of opening shop. That first sale happening so quickly was all it took. I immediately started dreaming, planning and obsessing about growing The Binding Bee into something that would allow me to make art and work for myself. These Quit Your Day Job blog posts added weekly fuel to the fire!

What ever happened to that teabag quilt?
It is still hanging on the wall in my living room. The color has faded a bit but it still smells lightly herbal and has held up through four moves.

How did you prepare to make the jump from caregiving to your own venture?
My first step was going to the library and checking out as many books as I could carry about how to start, run and manage a small business. Although none of them proved to be instantly enlightening, they did give me a good list regarding paperwork and practical first steps.  Since every small business is different, I had to learn primarily through my own successes and mistakes. With the research I did, I got my tax ID, set myself up as a DBA, trademarked my name, made up business cards, opened a business checking account and started stockpiling supplies and investing in a few tools.

What are your best marketing tips?
I tell everyone I meet about Etsy and always have a business card in hand.  I also carry my personal journal in my purse and pull it out as a sample anytime someone asks what I do for a living.  Word-of-mouth promotion and attending craft shows have been my most successful marketing tools. I’ve also gotten connected with the Indiana Handicraft Exchange community that is based here in Indianapolis.  They are an awesome group of crafters and craft supporters who lovingly and tirelessly promote the DIY craft community, local small businesses, Etsy, and each others’ work.

What tactics did you find to be less successful in the long run?
Giving away too much product. Shortly after opening  my shop I was bombarded with requests for donations to various charities, and I gave to everyone who asked. My thinking was that it could work as free positive marketing, as well as philanthropic. It ended up being too large a drain on my inventory and was not an effective way to market my work or Etsy shop. I still donate to my favorite charities for their yearly fundraisers but I don’t have any outlandish expectations attached.

What’s a day in the life of The Binding Bee look like?

  • 7:00 a.m. Wake up and go for my morning walk through historic Irvington with Attie, my faithful black lab.
  • 7:40 a.m. I make it home just in time to have a cup of coffee with my sweetie before he heads off to work.
  • 8:00 a.m. Shower, dress for the day and then sit down to journal, write my to-do list and eat breakfast. I will also check for sales, read emails and catch up on my favorite blogs.
  • 9:00 a.m. To the studio! Thankfully my routine changes every day, allowing my Aries personality to thrive and stay fully engaged. Some of my daily tasks include working on custom guest books, cutting, prepping and sewing leather, tearing paper, boxing up wholesale orders, and about 99 other little tasks in-between. Updating my shop typically happens in the afternoon. I take photos in the morning because the light is better and it’s not too hot outside. I break for lunch at some point and try to make it to the post office before the evening rush.
  • 5:30 p.m. My husband Tim gets home. I always break for supper with him, and then we decide what to do with our evening. If we decide to stay home, I inevitably end up working more. I do a lot of the actual binding and sewing in the evening.
  • 11:00 p.m. Put away my needle and thread and go to bed.

You mentioned catching up on your favorite blogs: which ones?

What do you enjoy most about not having a day job? Is there anything you miss?
I love being the boss. I enjoy that part immensely. I miss the clear boundaries that a regular job provided, like, say, getting off at 5 p.m., no strings attached. Sometimes the line blurs between business and personal time. Since I am my own business and I really love what I do, I end up doing a whole lot of it!

And the hardest part? 
Oh geesh, there are several things that are a challenge for me:

  1. It never stops, and I find it really hard to stop. I am always thinking or working on something related to The Binding Bee. I work harder and more than I ever have before. I even have dreams about book designs, business tasks and my booth display on a pretty regular basis.
  2. It is really tricky to switch from being in artist mode to CEO mode. I’ve had to learn how to switch from one role to another quickly and not be stifled or frustrated by the business side of things.
  3. Hello bookkeeping! What a nightmare! The first year of selling journals on Etsy and at craft shows I did not keep very good records…or any records, actually. When it came time to pay my income and sales tax I had to do 12 months worth of bookkeeping in three days. That was a dumb mistake and I paid for it in tears, taxes and time. I have since become much more disciplined about keeping accurate and orderly records

If you could go back in time, what advice would you give yourself or others considering a similar path?

  1. Keep really good records and set up a good system from day one. Track mileage, too! It all adds up. I now have a handy Excel sheet for both and balance everything with my checking account and receipts at the end of each month. Also, hire someone else to do your taxes.
  2. Set boundaries for your work time and manage that time well.
  3. If at all possible, get a studio space that has a door. It’s helpful to have a way to “close shop” physically and mentally for the night.
  4. Find a business mentor who is where you want to be in the future! I’m still on the lookout for one because I know that having a person to look towards makes future goals less abstract.

What’s in store for The Binding Bee?
One of my ongoing goals for the coming years is to be able to source my materials from even more eco-friendly suppliers.  I have worked really hard to find the recycled and upcycled materials that I use now, but I’m always looking for ways to improve and work closer to the source. I would also like to be able to hire part-time help for the busy seasons. I’m always working on learning new binding techniques and incorporating novel and original designs in my work.

Have any favorite Etsy shops we should know about?
I have about 35 that are dear to my heart, but I will highlight four of them here.

  1. The Hot Cookie: These are so scrumptious! I could eat these cookies every day, and I do eat them at almost every craft show I attend. YUM!
  2. Sara B Jewelry: I just love her style! All of her pieces are bold, feisty and expertly crafted.
  3. Katastrophic: Her design sensibility is amazing and her clothes are wonderfully comfortable. I am always anxious to see what sort of new designs she will come out with each season.
  4. Reimagined by Luna: A dear friend and fellow bookmaker.

Thanks to Megan for sharing her story. You can see some of Megans work in the Seller’s Items below.

Previous Quit Your Day Job posts

Photo Album - Large Red Leather Photo Album with Antique Key Replica and Archival Pages - Includes photo corners
Photo Album - Large Red Leather Photo Album with Antique Key Replica and Archival Pages - Includes photo corners
bindingbee
$125.00 USD
Traveler's notebook - leather travel journal with map and compass
Traveler's notebook - leather travel journal with map and compass
bindingbee
$48.00 USD
Photo album Beautiful mustard yellow Leather Photo Album with double latch. Holds 30 or 60 Photos and includes photo corners.
Photo album Beautiful mustard yellow Leather Photo Album with double latch. Holds 30 or 60 Photos and includes photo corners.
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Large Photo Album - Turquoise Leather Photo Album Includes photo corners
Large Photo Album - Turquoise Leather Photo Album Includes photo corners
bindingbee
$125.00 USD
Pink Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
Pink Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Yellow Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
Yellow Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Burgandy Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
Burgandy Leather Journal / notebook with old world torn edge pages by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Brown Leather Mini Book necklace by Binding Bee / Nickle Free 18" chain/ Gift box
Brown Leather Mini Book necklace by Binding Bee / Nickle Free 18" chain/ Gift box
bindingbee
$34.00 USD
Custom Small Leather Travel Journal with Compass, Map, and Initials
Custom Small Leather Travel Journal with Compass, Map, and Initials
bindingbee
$53.00 USD
Custom Deployment Journal (MD) - Custom Name Tape - You choose the Military Branch
Custom Deployment Journal (MD) - Custom Name Tape - You choose the Military Branch
bindingbee
$65.00 USD
Green leather hiking journal with skeleton key
Green leather hiking journal with skeleton key
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Bright orange refillable leather journal / sketchbook / notebook
Bright orange refillable leather journal / sketchbook / notebook
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable  bright and playful suede leather journal sketchbook with skeleton key
Refillable bright and playful suede leather journal sketchbook with skeleton key
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable distressed brown leather journal with skeleton key
Refillable distressed brown leather journal with skeleton key
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable purple and red leather journal with skeleton key
Refillable purple and red leather journal with skeleton key
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable light distressed brown leather journal with skeleton key
Refillable light distressed brown leather journal with skeleton key
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
LG taupe leather journal / sketchbook with handmade cotton rag paper. Closes with an antique skeleton key.
LG taupe leather journal / sketchbook with handmade cotton rag paper. Closes with an antique skeleton key.
bindingbee
$68.00 USD
Earthy green leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
Earthy green leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$48.00 USD
Rugged brown leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
Rugged brown leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$48.00 USD
Custom Deployment Journal (MD) - Custom Name Tape - You choose the Military Branch
Custom Deployment Journal (MD) - Custom Name Tape - You choose the Military Branch
bindingbee
$65.00 USD
LG navy blue and brown leather journal / sketchbook with handmade cotton rag paper. Closes with an antique skeleton key.
LG navy blue and brown leather journal / sketchbook with handmade cotton rag paper. Closes with an antique skeleton key.
bindingbee
$68.00 USD
Dark brown reclaimed leather journal / sketchbook with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
Dark brown reclaimed leather journal / sketchbook with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
bindingbee
$62.00 USD
Sophisticated leather journal with handmade paper
Sophisticated leather journal with handmade paper
bindingbee
$68.00 USD
Warm brown simple leather journal by Binding Bee
Warm brown simple leather journal by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Distressed blue gray leather journal by Binding Bee
Distressed blue gray leather journal by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Light pink leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
Light pink leather journal with reclaimed leather and recycled paper by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$48.00 USD
Belted black leather journal with handmade paper by Binding Bee
Belted black leather journal with handmade paper by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Elegant black reclaimed leather diary with handmade paper and unique latch
Elegant black reclaimed leather diary with handmade paper and unique latch
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Refillable leather sketchbook in designer leather by Binding bee
Refillable leather sketchbook in designer leather by Binding bee
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Elegant refillable leather notebook out of designer leather by Binding Bee
Elegant refillable leather notebook out of designer leather by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable brown leather journal with skeleton key
Refillable brown leather journal with skeleton key
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable camo leather notebook
Refillable camo leather notebook
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Refillable leather sketchbook in elegant designer leather by Binding bee
Refillable leather sketchbook in elegant designer leather by Binding bee
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Large refillable leather sketchbook - landscape 12" wide x 9" tall
Large refillable leather sketchbook - landscape 12" wide x 9" tall
bindingbee
$60.00 USD
Red Celtic Cross Vintage Journal or Wedding Guest Book with Blank Pages
Red Celtic Cross Vintage Journal or Wedding Guest Book with Blank Pages
bindingbee
$65.00 USD
LG 11 x 8 Black sketchbook REFILL for Binding Bee leather cover
LG 11 x 8 Black sketchbook REFILL for Binding Bee leather cover
bindingbee
$18.50 USD
Double latch Leather sketchbook -soft brown suede leather journal with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
Double latch Leather sketchbook -soft brown suede leather journal with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
bindingbee
$62.00 USD
Massive leather sketchbook/journal with recycled sketch paper, lay flat binding and antique door plate and key
Massive leather sketchbook/journal with recycled sketch paper, lay flat binding and antique door plate and key
bindingbee
$120.00 USD
Leather sketchbook -soft brown suede leather book with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
Leather sketchbook -soft brown suede leather book with recycled sketch paper by Binding Bee.
bindingbee
$62.00 USD
Custom Imprint name upgrade -addition to leather purchase
Custom Imprint name upgrade -addition to leather purchase
bindingbee
$5.00 USD
Black Canson Photo Corners 1 Pack 252 corners
Black Canson Photo Corners 1 Pack 252 corners
bindingbee
$5.45 USD
Custom Travel Journal - You pick the map - Includes Initials on cover
Custom Travel Journal - You pick the map - Includes Initials on cover
bindingbee
$67.00 USD
Refillable leather sketchbook in elegant designer leather by Binding bee
Refillable leather sketchbook in elegant designer leather by Binding bee
bindingbee
$45.00 USD
Hoosier love leather travel journal with classic leather wrap and handmade paper.
Hoosier love leather travel journal with classic leather wrap and handmade paper.
bindingbee
$56.00 USD
Elegant rugged leather journal /blank recycled paper/slide leather latch by Binding Bee
Elegant rugged leather journal /blank recycled paper/slide leather latch by Binding Bee
bindingbee
$48.00 USD
Leather Baby Book- Soft Light Brown Leather with latch and bright blue paper by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
Leather Baby Book- Soft Light Brown Leather with latch and bright blue paper by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
bindingbee
$35.00 USD
Leather Baby Book- Simple sweet brown leather with skeleton key Journal by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
Leather Baby Book- Simple sweet brown leather with skeleton key Journal by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
bindingbee
$35.00 USD
Leather Baby Book- Ivory Leather Cover Journal by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
Leather Baby Book- Ivory Leather Cover Journal by Binding Bee Indianapolis, Indiana
bindingbee
$35.00 USD

219 comments

  • Ayca

    Ayca said 6 years ago

    Great story!Lovely shop! Thanks for sharing :)

  • ikabags

    ikabags said 6 years ago

    Wonderful story , beautiful shop ! Congrats !!

  • PeacockInvitations

    PeacockInvitations said 6 years ago

    Love it! Keep up the great work:)

  • inspirationfibers

    inspirationfibers said 6 years ago

    Love your books. They just oooze possibility! I love your advice on having a studio with a door. So true!

  • ikabags

    ikabags said 6 years ago

    And your working space is amazing :))

  • Heathered

    Heathered said 6 years ago

    the vintage leather post card is beautiful.

  • LoellaMedina

    LoellaMedina said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your story Megan! Very inspiring!

  • georgiedesigns

    georgiedesigns said 6 years ago

    Great story and beautiful shop!

  • LeapingWithFaith

    LeapingWithFaith said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your story. Love your shop! Margaret

  • MaaPstudio

    MaaPstudio said 6 years ago

    Love your shop!!Thank you for sharing your story:)

  • PaperBazaar

    PaperBazaar said 6 years ago

    Really inspiring :)

  • NoaSharonDesigns

    NoaSharonDesigns said 6 years ago

    nice article! cute books! cool working space!

  • CindyEllison

    CindyEllison said 6 years ago

    Megan, loved your interview! I imagine it is a dream come true to be featured on etsy's Quit Your Day Job! Beautiful work. Congratulations!

  • ReImagined

    ReImagined said 6 years ago

    Yea! Great interview and lovely photos. Your work is fabulous as always.

  • 1elegantlady

    1elegantlady said 6 years ago

    How inspiring for newbies like me. I just love your original journal designs. Your colors are great!!!

  • justhatched

    justhatched said 6 years ago

    Loved reading this. Beautiful books!

  • StringsnTings

    StringsnTings said 6 years ago

    That teabag quilt is amazing! How cool! Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts.

  • simplyworn

    simplyworn said 6 years ago

    great little story...very inspiring wishing her much success

  • joyoustreasures

    joyoustreasures said 6 years ago

    Great read! And I loved seeing *cough* the macbook *cough cough* on the table! hehe

  • HouseThatCrowBuilt

    HouseThatCrowBuilt said 6 years ago

    I love how you incorporate the old skeleton keys into your journals! Very nice feature!

  • FoundDays

    FoundDays said 6 years ago

    great article, good for you megan! i dream about working for myself too..

  • HouseThatCrowBuilt

    HouseThatCrowBuilt said 6 years ago

    I love how you incorporate the skeleton keys into your journals. Wonderful feature!

  • ekra

    ekra said 6 years ago

    Such great insights and tips! So true that it is important to try and 'close-up' for the day, such a hard thing to do when you work from home. Keep up the great work!

  • idlehandsdesigns

    idlehandsdesigns said 6 years ago

    What a great story! Thanks for sharing❥ Beautiful work by the way.

  • laurenmagpie

    laurenmagpie said 6 years ago

    very inspiring!

  • bhangtiez

    bhangtiez said 6 years ago

    Really great story....& amazing books/journals...

  • giltandenvy

    giltandenvy said 6 years ago

    Gorgeous books, and the skeleton key idea is really clever. Thanks for the advice on record-keeping, I'm only just starting out and can see this being something that could potentially be a headache later on, so I'm going to try and take your words of wisdom to heart!

  • LuRuUniques

    LuRuUniques said 6 years ago

    What a nice story. Love your journals. Wishes for continued success..

  • BrightSpotDesigns

    BrightSpotDesigns said 6 years ago

    Great story, gives us all hope. Love the tea bag quilt. Your journals are so unique. Keep up the good work and wishing you much success in the future.

  • beachglassshop

    beachglassshop said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing!!!

  • BagOfTags

    BagOfTags said 6 years ago

    Wonderful!! Thanks so much for sharing your story :) Your work is gorgeous!! Wishing you every success :)

  • DebsWhimsicalDesigns

    DebsWhimsicalDesigns said 6 years ago

    What beautiful pieces you make!

  • VeronicaRStudio

    VeronicaRStudio said 6 years ago

    Love your story, congratulations Megan!

  • DeNovoStyle

    DeNovoStyle said 6 years ago

    Tea bag quilt - I love it! Thanks for the insite.

  • LoveYourBling

    LoveYourBling said 6 years ago

    Thanks for the great info!

  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections said 6 years ago

    Beautifully handcrafted and unique journals! Congrats for making Featured Seller.

  • NoFrump

    NoFrump said 6 years ago

    thanks for sharing another great story! :)

  • alkazdesign

    alkazdesign said 6 years ago

    Great story, thanks for sharing. I think it is everyones dream to give up there day job. I hope l can do it one day.

  • FindingFelicityLLC

    FindingFelicityLLC said 6 years ago

    I look forward to reading the QYDJ each and every week. Your journals are exquisite! And yes, bookkeeping is a beast to keep up with -- tax time is always pain, no matter how organized we are. Thanks so much for sharing your story -- we wish you continued success!

  • PrintasticDesigns

    PrintasticDesigns said 6 years ago

    Great story, congratulations on your success! I am also an Aries and find it hard to define the line between my work and personal time. It's wonderful to see others make a career out of crafting. Some day I hope to be able to as well!

  • PrintasticDesigns

    PrintasticDesigns said 6 years ago

    Congratulations on your success! I'm also an Aries and find it hard to draw the line between work and personal time. Hopefully someday I can quite my day job and become completely self employed, but until then stories like yours are an inspiration. Best of luck!

  • TheZestyDesk

    TheZestyDesk said 6 years ago

    I also work in the hospice industry...creating collateral for agencies. I too dream of being able to run my own business. Maybe someday I will have the same luck you have had! Congrats on your success!

  • BeeKai

    BeeKai said 6 years ago

    Cool studio... mine has a door too, lol!! Cheers and the best of everything to you... Deb :)

  • rarebeasts

    rarebeasts said 6 years ago

    Inspiring story, thanks for sharing with us. I love your work too.

  • candacejean

    candacejean said 6 years ago

    Thank you so much for the peek into your studio and for sharing your story. Congrats on your success.. this is so inspiring!

  • quiteclever

    quiteclever said 6 years ago

    Yay! I was so excited to see a familiar face in the "Quit Your Day Job" series. I've done a couple of the same shows as Megan and she has beautiful work! It's so nice to see a fellow Hoosier girl featured! Congrats!

  • PaintingKity

    PaintingKity said 6 years ago

    Great story! Adorable journals.

  • SatinandBirch

    SatinandBirch said 6 years ago

    What a nice lady, girl woman, I so enjoyed this.

  • makingthishome

    makingthishome said 6 years ago

    I didn't realize that I have been seeking a mentor of sorts, too. I don't think I can find one in person out here just yet, but I love the idea of having people you admire with goals that you find yourself inspired to reach, too. Beautiful!

  • sewnewthings

    sewnewthings said 6 years ago

    I love your work, Megan. I know what you mean by "always thinking about..." something to do with your shop! (But in a good way)

  • SkySaddle

    SkySaddle said 6 years ago

    Nice stuff

  • accentonvintage

    accentonvintage said 6 years ago

    Beautiful shop and a great story!

  • LicoriceTwig

    LicoriceTwig said 6 years ago

    A wonderful article! And such amazing works of art. I love reading these.

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mclovebuddy said 6 years ago

    ... another beautiful and inspiring journey. :)

  • SmilingGirlStudio

    SmilingGirlStudio said 6 years ago

    My favorite evening "read" has to be the quit your day job series. So inspiring and lends hope to the rest of us still waiting! Thank you so much for sharing your story. Your journals and books are beautiful.

  • encantodesign

    encantodesign said 6 years ago

    I love the quit your day job also....maybe one day I'm still working on my 1st sale.lol Thanks for the info and story...great work.

  • AntiNu

    AntiNu said 6 years ago

    I'm green with jealousy! Especially that great looking workspace!

  • alongcameabirdie

    alongcameabirdie said 6 years ago

    I agree...I think I'm turning green right now. The workspace is wonderful and love your story. Congrats!

  • pinkiesnursingcovers

    pinkiesnursingcovers said 6 years ago

    Very INSPIRING! You do AWESOME WORK! and "DITTO" "A.T.A.." something with your shop!

  • Earthystyle

    Earthystyle said 6 years ago

    lovely work and story. ^_^

  • SarahEln

    SarahEln said 6 years ago

    ah, the aries personality! maybe that's why i have such a hard time with routines :) Loooove your work!

  • RubyBeets

    RubyBeets said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your story!

  • shopkoolgifts

    shopkoolgifts said 6 years ago

    Love your story and how well you seem to manage your time...in fact, your time line prompted me to start mine. I have not been productive lately and need to refocus. I spend so much time reading books and online. Thank you for great story!!

  • PatinaArtsAlchemy

    PatinaArtsAlchemy said 6 years ago

    Lovely story! Quit your day job is one of my favorite things on Etsy - so inspiring! I also love the look of your studio: very personal, but organized and bright. Good luck and continued success to you :)

  • RedorGrayArt

    RedorGrayArt said 6 years ago

    your work is really so down to earth ..just lovley

  • PateyCakes

    PateyCakes said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing your story!

  • DigitalCS

    DigitalCS said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing! You have great designs and you're so very cute in the first picture!!:)

  • DazzledBeader

    DazzledBeader said 6 years ago

    Lovely shop! Thanks for the advice.

  • MireilleLagow

    MireilleLagow said 6 years ago

    I love your teabag quilt! Very clever. Beautiful work too! Congrats!

  • yadiyda

    yadiyda said 6 years ago

    VERY INSPIRING!!! :)

  • lauraprentice

    lauraprentice said 6 years ago

    I AM IN LOVE WITH THE TEA BAG QUILT. I quilt random objects obsessively (a 30 foot tshirt quilt, vintage card catalog cards, tiles, old planners, handmade paper, old snapshots, cardboard, discarded clothing) Please check out the quilts I've made because they truly groove with the tea bag quilt! http://www.flickr.com/photos/lauraprentice/sets/72157603314816656/ http://www.flickr.com/photos/lauraprentice/sets/72157611255854551/

  • bbbennyandthejet

    bbbennyandthejet said 6 years ago

    Such beautiful journals! A weird thing to appreciate, but I love that you have some gorgeous books under 20$.. I'm always looking for the perfect, affordable, birthday/wedding/graduation gift for those far away. These are my new favourite!

  • sarahknightdesign

    sarahknightdesign said 6 years ago

    nice! I love your work:) Congrats on the feature!

  • floorartetc

    floorartetc said 6 years ago

    A great story and wonderful journals! Great advise also. Billie

  • 1AEON

    1AEON said 6 years ago

    Sweet! Neat work! Congrats!!!!!

  • thehotcookie

    thehotcookie said 6 years ago

    OMG, I love you!

  • juicejuice

    juicejuice said 6 years ago

    I love your work. Its very nice.

  • sosweetpartyshop

    sosweetpartyshop said 6 years ago

    Great story. I love to read these... it gives me hope that I will do this full time someday!

  • aynart

    aynart said 6 years ago

    hooray! great story!

  • MarianRuth

    MarianRuth said 6 years ago

    Very inspiring story =) Makes an Etsy newbie like myself look forward to all the hard work ahead.

  • lorenabr

    lorenabr said 6 years ago

    Great info and a very interesting story!

  • WhatIfPhotography

    WhatIfPhotography said 6 years ago

    Very Inspiring! Certainly fuel for my fire :)Congrats Megan!

  • awindowintime

    awindowintime said 6 years ago

    Just love your work! Good luck for the future :)

  • TheSilverPearl

    TheSilverPearl said 6 years ago

    thanks for the inspiration...

  • PrincessSamy

    PrincessSamy said 6 years ago

    I am loving that teabag quilt! Great seller. :)

  • KnitterEnthusiast

    KnitterEnthusiast said 6 years ago

    Great tips and I love your journals!

  • pasin

    pasin said 6 years ago

    Lovely bags

  • ZenAndCoffee

    ZenAndCoffee said 6 years ago

    Beautiful story and shop! Thank you for taking the time to share! I wish you many more years of success! ~Wren ZenAndCoffee.etsy.com Arm Warmers & Fingerless Gloves for all seasons & styles!

  • Evajune

    Evajune said 6 years ago

    Congrats I love your bags. Stories like this help to carry on.

  • shellsherree

    shellsherree said 6 years ago

    I love your teabag quilt, and your wonderfully organised studio. Thank you ~ an inspiring story!

  • LeafandInk

    LeafandInk said 6 years ago

    I really appreciate how candid Megan of the The Binding Bee is in this. Especially her willingly admitting how she really didn't do any book keeping her 1st year of her Etsy shop being opened. She allowed herself to be really vulnerable so that all of us may learn from her. I think that says a lot about her character. Thank you Megan.

  • rakshniyavintage

    rakshniyavintage said 6 years ago

    always a great read - also a very lovely shop - good luck :)

  • robinandthesage

    robinandthesage said 6 years ago

    i love to see studio's of another artists and read about their days.

  • rbjaneite

    rbjaneite said 6 years ago

    LOVE the teabag quilt - thanks for including a photo!

  • rbjaneite

    rbjaneite said 6 years ago

    LOVE the teabag quilt - thanks for including a photo!

  • RubyRedcrafts

    RubyRedcrafts said 6 years ago

    Beautiful work and a great interview! very helpful!

  • LadyLuLus

    LadyLuLus said 6 years ago

    Very inspiring! Lovely article :)

  • OldTimePickers

    OldTimePickers said 6 years ago

    Congrats on your success!

  • thedaydreamer

    thedaydreamer said 6 years ago

    I love these articles. Good luck with everything, bindingbee! :)

  • streetnoodles

    streetnoodles said 6 years ago

    i love these stories...so inspiring...except the tax preparation part. i'm in awe of your discipline...no matter what i try, i'm always the wait-till-the-last-minute-gal...BUT there's hope...i noe keep all my receipts in ONE box :D

  • doodlekreations

    doodlekreations said 6 years ago

    Great job , Binding bee..I love your style and your story. Congrats !

  • GetLathered

    GetLathered said 6 years ago

    Great article, Megan-- Congrats!

  • janellehaskin

    janellehaskin said 6 years ago

    Beautiful and inspiring! Tax time is really scary to me... I havnt been through it as a crafter yet... Yikes!

  • kathyjohnson3

    kathyjohnson3 said 6 years ago

    Great interview and very lovely items, thanks for sharing!

  • YellowRoseDBS

    YellowRoseDBS said 6 years ago

    Wonderful! I wish you continued success!

  • breadandroses

    breadandroses said 6 years ago

    Thank you for featuring this lovely artisan! I appreciate your aesthetic, advice and line of goods. Best wishes!

  • pollysdolly

    pollysdolly said 6 years ago

    Beautiful books and excellent advice....thank you!

  • PerfectStitches

    PerfectStitches said 6 years ago

    Great story, admire your hard work, very inspirational!!

  • riricreations

    riricreations said 6 years ago

    LOVELY products, and inspiring, real story~ thanks for sharing and best wishes for your continued success!

  • tomatored

    tomatored said 6 years ago

    great story! thanks for sharing!

  • monkeyandsquirrel

    monkeyandsquirrel said 6 years ago

    that quilt.... gaaahhhhh, so amazing!

  • WeddingJewels

    WeddingJewels said 6 years ago

    wonderful! I love these stories :)

  • Bigbonehandmade

    Bigbonehandmade said 6 years ago

    thanks for sharing, i love your teabag quilt^^

  • beachflowerdesigns

    beachflowerdesigns said 6 years ago

    *waves* Hi, to a fellow Hoosier! Lovely work! :)

  • bellasparty

    bellasparty said 6 years ago

    Beautiful journals! Great story!

  • BettyBee

    BettyBee said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing. I love your journals and hope to be the proud owner of one soon :) Keep up the lovely work!

  • doxallodesigns

    doxallodesigns said 6 years ago

    GREAT article! Lots of good advice that I'll be putting into practice!! Thanks so much for sharing!

  • KensingtonAve

    KensingtonAve said 6 years ago

    Great advice! Thank you for sharing :)

  • Absurdious

    Absurdious said 6 years ago

    I enjoyed reading about your marvelous creative process. Thanks for sharing your story. The picture of your working space looks like something out of a beautiful magazine.

  • KIMMSMITH

    KIMMSMITH said 6 years ago

    Beautiful creations, thank you for the inspiration!

  • SaraBJewelry

    SaraBJewelry said 6 years ago

    i am sooo happy for you! your article is wonderfully inspiring. your work just gets more and more beautiful and amazing! thank you for sharing with us! and thank you so much for the shout out! {i heart you}

  • plumprettysugar

    plumprettysugar said 6 years ago

    I love your work so much!

  • Waterrose

    Waterrose said 6 years ago

    What a wonderful interview....always so glad to read about people who are able to fulfill their dreams.

  • thegoldenhare

    thegoldenhare said 6 years ago

    A really inspiring story....good luck with it. I love the things you make and your studio space is great. Thanks for being inspirational.x

  • MrCraftyRVing

    MrCraftyRVing said 6 years ago

    I'd wish you luck - but your on your way. Everything I know about ETSY I've learned from my wife and she told me when I have extra time to invest in the blog inserts. And so here I am - your my first. WOW - thank-you. I however need more luck then you. But hey I am having my first sale. That in itself was a learning experience. You are a very inspiring young lady and I'm an old dog compared to you but this is one of the greatest avenues for me is ETSY. I can't wait till my season is done to get back to ETSY full-time. If you get a chance check out my store and give me some tips.

  • MWsDesigns

    MWsDesigns said 6 years ago

    Your creations are beautifully intriguing! I enjoyed reading the details about your day and your practical advice. Thanks, Megan.

  • RomanceCatsAndWhimsy

    RomanceCatsAndWhimsy said 6 years ago

    Fantastic interview and some great tips. Your work is lovely. :) Congratulations on your ongoing success. And thanks for the tip on Crafting and MBA - I signed up for the newsletter!

  • alittlemomento

    alittlemomento said 6 years ago

    Great Blogs!

  • accidentalcharm

    accidentalcharm said 6 years ago

    Inspiring. Gonna get off my keister and get crafting!

  • busterandboo

    busterandboo said 6 years ago

    Inspiring, thank you for sharing!

  • wayfaringmagnolia

    wayfaringmagnolia said 6 years ago

    Wonderful shop! Your journals are so lovely!!

  • bayleafhome

    bayleafhome said 6 years ago

    love your creations, binding bee! Great work pays off!!

  • NKcollection

    NKcollection said 6 years ago

    Inspiring story. I enjoyed reading your feedback on the homebased business. Thanks

  • ranasalame

    ranasalame said 6 years ago

    Congrats Megan! I have actually just moved to Indiana and have seen your pieces around town and in Chicago, I actually have gifted a piece of yours. So it was to my great surprise that I actually got to hear your story today! Excellent work.

  • girltuesdayjewelry

    girltuesdayjewelry said 6 years ago

    Great interview! Your book necklaces are adorable! Good luck to you!

  • ScrapHappyLyrebird

    ScrapHappyLyrebird said 6 years ago

    Very inspiring, and practical!

  • tbone4life

    tbone4life said 6 years ago

    Amazing journals, would make fabulous gifts! Thanks for sharing your inspiring story! Much luck in your business success.

  • twopoochpaperie

    twopoochpaperie said 6 years ago

    Another inspiring story, thanks for sharing. And your books are so beautiful!

  • blueridgewoodworking

    blueridgewoodworking said 6 years ago

    Keep up the Good Work!!! Good Luck and love you story....I can relate.

  • JoliOriginals

    JoliOriginals said 6 years ago

    Loved reading this, great inspiration, thank you!

  • Revel

    Revel said 6 years ago

    I love your studio.

  • poplovedesigns

    poplovedesigns said 6 years ago

    Wonderful article, and I love the new more personalized format of the interview. Beautiful work, keep it up! <3 Andrea

  • MommaE

    MommaE said 6 years ago

    I especially like the advice to find a mentor who is where you want to be. Great way to put it.

  • SweetEventide

    SweetEventide said 6 years ago

    I loved the advice about bookkeeping. It is a big white elephant for me. I'm inspired to make some progress on that. Thank you for the interview!

  • CheersToJuly

    CheersToJuly said 6 years ago

    LOVE IT!

  • alloverthepalace

    alloverthepalace said 6 years ago

    I loved this article, as well as the other quit your day job articles. So inspiring.

  • balmasque

    balmasque said 6 years ago

    Very inspiring to everyone! Thanks for sharing.

  • recycledwares

    recycledwares said 6 years ago

    lovely work. i really like the key closures.

  • twirlaway

    twirlaway said 6 years ago

    I LOVE your work! Thanks for sharing your story!

  • krycza06

    krycza06 said 6 years ago

    Your story is very inspiring! Special for me as a beginner!

  • julessabjewelry

    julessabjewelry said 6 years ago

    Love your journals Megan... Anyone who makes such wonderful books is a favorite of mine! Congrats on the hard work and keep it up, I'm sure it's more than worth it!

  • Interprintations

    Interprintations said 6 years ago

    I LOVE that this series covered a full-time Etsier in the Indianapolis area! =) Your work is fantastic...

  • GwathmeyGalleries

    GwathmeyGalleries said 6 years ago

    I too enjoy the Quit Your Day Job interviews. I totally agree with the bookkeeping piece. It is a left brain detail that can cause some painful snags. Beautiful creations Megan!!

  • AllThingsGrand

    AllThingsGrand said 6 years ago

    Love your shop! We are new to Etsy, and the craft business...but loving it so far :) P.S. Feel free to check out my site and if you purchase something and mention this post I will give you 10% off your first order from me!! Thanks, and have a great day! Steph

  • steampunkjunq

    steampunkjunq said 6 years ago

    What a great story! Thanks for sharing. :)

  • KirkFusonDesign

    KirkFusonDesign said 6 years ago

    I just signed up today on Etsy. Congratulations on your happiness and success.

  • DotD

    DotD said 6 years ago

    Very nice work....Thank you, and best wishes for continued success.

  • lamixx

    lamixx said 6 years ago

    Great story, I love your stuff!

  • VIKukA

    VIKukA said 6 years ago

    Wonderful story, thank you!

  • thefortunatehome

    thefortunatehome said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing. I hope much success continues to come your way.

  • museumshop

    museumshop said 6 years ago

    Great. Congratulations!

  • luckywalnut

    luckywalnut said 6 years ago

    Great interview and lovely handmade books! I hope to someday Quit My Day Job too :)

  • thefamilyjewels3

    thefamilyjewels3 said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing. Best of Luck.

  • LittleGirlDancing

    LittleGirlDancing said 6 years ago

    Mahalo for sharing such wonderful details!

  • josoriginals

    josoriginals said 6 years ago

    Beautiful shop. Great article.

  • art2theextreme

    art2theextreme said 6 years ago

    What a great shop to feature. The Binding Bee is always at the shows I participate in and their items always look AMAZING! Congrats!

  • OnTheRoadVintage

    OnTheRoadVintage said 6 years ago

    Thanks so much for your inspiration! Jan

  • larkpottery

    larkpottery said 6 years ago

    Card in bag. Card in bag. Card in bag. O.K. I did it. Good idea,simple but easy to forget. Thanks, Lark

  • Veanies

    Veanies said 6 years ago

    Wow that sounds like a lot of hard work but definitely worth it :D The tea bag quilt is amazing!

  • traceygarciadesigns

    traceygarciadesigns said 6 years ago

    This is a great article. I love your work space, and your story is very inspiring! Your journals are also gorgeous! Thanks for sharing.

  • TheNightjar

    TheNightjar said 6 years ago

    Great tips, thanks Bindingbee : )

  • TheNightjar

    TheNightjar said 6 years ago

    oh yeah, that tea bag quilt is fantastic!!!

  • cinderella52

    cinderella52 said 6 years ago

    Thank you for your honesty about the bookkeeping, and your schedule for the day. I also like the idea of having a space where you can close the door and close shop.

  • IrinaSztukowski

    IrinaSztukowski said 6 years ago

    Great article! Very inspiring and keeps you hoping that your business will take off and pay off all of the hard work you put into it. Thank you Megan and Mary, Irina

  • ThePaperButton

    ThePaperButton said 6 years ago

    Very helpful... thanks so much! I just did my DBA today and publication today... getting that much closer...

  • owlsay

    owlsay said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing! Also loving the tea bag quilt!!

  • jewels50

    jewels50 said 6 years ago

    I read every bit, if you don't mind I would like to follow your dayn I get up the same time and I like that you even have time for a walk. You will be my inspiration.

  • flashbackintime

    flashbackintime said 6 years ago

    Great advice. Now to check out the cookies...

  • BlindTigerFlasks

    BlindTigerFlasks said 6 years ago

    Always very inspiring stories! Thank you for taking the time to share. Cheers!

  • camstudiostore

    camstudiostore said 6 years ago

    Beautiful work!

  • vintagemaison

    vintagemaison said 6 years ago

    I love your work - love the tea-bag quilt too!

  • Petitefee

    Petitefee said 6 years ago

    Vraiment très beau, j'aime particulièrement les colliers !

  • knittingmomma

    knittingmomma said 6 years ago

    Thank you so much for taking the time to share your story. So inspiring.

  • vintagetownsquare

    vintagetownsquare said 6 years ago

    Very inspirational!

  • IRONSIDE

    IRONSIDE said 6 years ago

    Megan, This is so inspiring and informational! This just might be the final 'push' or 'sign' I've been looking for this week to help me get closer to my own goals in the business of creating. Errin

  • vintagenelly

    vintagenelly said 6 years ago

    A wonderful interview, lovely journals, inspiring person!!

  • netteblo

    netteblo said 6 years ago

    I just would like to know if when you break for dinner with your husband...do you have to cook it too and then clean up afterwards? ;)

  • chicinthecity

    chicinthecity said 6 years ago

    Great story. Very inspiring. Good for you!

  • MoonHawkCreations

    MoonHawkCreations said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing your story, Megan. The help links were just that - helpful. Thank you, again and best of luck for future success.

  • michemozaix

    michemozaix said 6 years ago

    What a wonderful shop! That teabag quilt is AWESOME!! Thanks for sharing!

  • 3twentysix

    3twentysix said 6 years ago

    love love LOVE your story and your shop! :]

  • edkstudio

    edkstudio said 6 years ago

    Thank you for sharing your story. Beautiful work!

  • pamg

    pamg said 6 years ago

    Great interview. LOVE what you make! Thanks for the kind shout out too, and your tea bag quilt...leaves me speechless!

  • DaisVintageTreasures

    DaisVintageTreasures said 6 years ago

    Wow! What a great and uplifting article, gives me hope that maybe one day I too, will be able to work for myself and be my own boss, really inspiring also, love your teabag quilt, awesome. -Daisy

  • agatsijoias

    agatsijoias said 6 years ago

    I really loved your story. It is a great source of inspiration!! Keep up the good work!! Stay blesses!!:-)

  • jewelry4everyone

    jewelry4everyone said 6 years ago

    Beautiful work, inspiraltional story and what a wonderful work space you have. Thank you and your tea bag quilt is so cool. Great ideas!

  • BeadFloraJewels

    BeadFloraJewels said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing your story. Very inspiring! :D xoxo, Fen

  • Decaldecor

    Decaldecor said 6 years ago

    This was so inspiring THANK YOU! :)

  • CloudLoveBaby

    CloudLoveBaby said 6 years ago

    Inspiring as always.

  • candlekitty

    candlekitty said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing! I especially like the tips about keeping good records for taxes! I need to do some work. :) Lovely shop, best of luck in the future.

  • PrairiePeasant

    PrairiePeasant said 6 years ago

    Wonderful to see a fellow bookbinder featured!

  • peacelilygirl123

    peacelilygirl123 said 6 years ago

    Very cool! I made a hand made notebook from a vintage math book!

  • CoastandCanvas

    CoastandCanvas said 6 years ago

    great read thankyou very informative as im just starting out

  • NuayJewelry

    NuayJewelry said 6 years ago

    very motivating story. It has me wanting to get my stuff in gear and rockin and rollin on etsy!

  • YarnTattoo

    YarnTattoo said 6 years ago

    Good Tips!!!!

  • YarnTattoo

    YarnTattoo said 6 years ago

    Good Tips!!!

  • refindoriginals

    refindoriginals said 6 years ago

    Very good, Megan! It's nice to learn more about your story. We have so much to learn from each other!

  • LoLosDesigns

    LoLosDesigns said 6 years ago

    Lovely journals! Thank you for sharing your story.

  • KasualBead

    KasualBead said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing. Much success to you. Great work

  • jabonbon

    jabonbon said 6 years ago

    Thanks for sharing a little bit of your world with us. Your story inspires me to keep going with my soap business! BTW, I'm in love with your skeleton key journals.

  • HauteInteriorsLLC

    HauteInteriorsLLC said 6 years ago

    Congratulations! Great story and great products. Wonderful exposure for your shop!

  • SouthernSohoStudio

    SouthernSohoStudio said 6 years ago

    Love your journals...beautiful BEAUTIFUL work! :)

  • excellentgem

    excellentgem said 6 years ago

    beautiful work!

  • PBandJdesign

    PBandJdesign said 6 years ago

    Thank you so much for the advice. I love people who love to help other people!! =)

  • thepresentplace

    thepresentplace said 6 years ago

    thank you for sharing, love your journals, beautiful!!

  • ArtsyLadyBoutique

    ArtsyLadyBoutique said 6 years ago

    Incredibly informative and insightful - thanks for sharing :-)

  • kokadots

    kokadots said 6 years ago

    Great story!

  • InkStreet

    InkStreet said 6 years ago

    You have such beautiful items and your shop looks very organized. I have a business degree and I want to say that you give really great advice for getting started as a business owner. It is so difficult to know where to start sometimes. I think your interview will be very helpful to a lot of sellers. Thanks for sharing!

  • RepublicUnderground

    Republic Underground from RepublicUnderground said 1 year ago

    nice article

Sign in to add your own