Guest Blog: Special Topics in Calamity Business – Taking Stock by Kelly of Crafting a Green World

By guest contributor Kelly Rand

I’m not a big fan of end of the year nostalgia. I’m always waiting on pins and needles to see what’s next, what’s coming around the bend; anxious to see what the new year brings. But as we come into 2010 (a whole new year AND decade), it is a good time to take stock. Literally.

Obviously you should go through this process more than once a year and keep tabs on everything, but a new year is just as good as any to get the ball rolling. So grab a piece of paper, or start a handy dandy spread sheet for those electronically inclined, and start going through the stock that is associated with your craft business.

Start with the easy stuff.


Pair of Ceramic Birds – Peking Turquoise Blue Crackle Glaze by mudpuppy

What finished products do you have on hand? Which are listed and which are waiting to be listed for sale. Next, move onto your unfinished projects. You could even mark down when you think they’ll be finished. Which are prototypes and which are not?

Once you have a good grasp of what you have on hand you can then start assessing your products. You’ll have a quick visual of what’s selling, what’s not and what you need help promoting going into the new year.

You can ask yourself: Is it time to drop a product? Have a sale on a certain item? Introduce a new piece to your line?

Next up, tackling your supplies.

Sew in Fabric Party Flag Label String from nothingelegant

This can be a little scary. What do you have in that closet/craft room/bottom drawer? This is the most challenging because more than likely, if you’re like me, you know what you have for your most used items, but have no idea what you shoved to the back of that one drawer.

This inventory will also give you a good visual of what supplies you have on hand, what you need to restock up on and you might even find those special ribbons that were on sale that you thought went missing. You might even find that you never use that acrylic yarn and it’s time to destash by selling or donating the items to a school or charity.

By doing a thorough inventory of your crafts and supplies you’ll be more organized and ready to tackle the oncoming year. It will help clear your head and give you a good visual of where you are and hopefully a head start on where you want to go with your craft business in the new year.

Do you have any tips on taking stock? How do you keep your stock organized? Please share in the comments!

About the contributor: Kelly Rand is staff writer for, lead writer for Crafting a Green World, and is co-founder of Hello Craft, a non-profit trade association dedicated to the advancement of indie crafters and the handmade movement. Kelly is a compulsive knitter and avid maker who believes that handmade will save the world.