I’m a hobbyist. I jump from hobby to hobby all the time. Photography, electronics (briefly), now I’m crazy into collecting and listening to records.
But my latest hobby, has been making things. We had a garage in our house in San Antonio, and it was at that point when I was able to build a workbench and start buying a few power tools and begin making things in a little workshop in the garage.
At first I started with making small things, like Christmas ornaments for the kids, but it’s grown since then.
This is really when the bug bit me. I wanted to keep making things like these.
When we were building our new house in New Braunfels, I had to make sure that our garage had plenty of room for a workshop. It’s the main reason I insisted on adding 4 feet to the length of the garage. Now I have a bit more space to work, so I’m really pumped.
I’ve always wanted to make things and sell them, so I started thinking about what I could sell. My photos were definitely on that list, and by far the easiest thing for me to sell. But I wanted to actually make something, so I started keeping my eyes open when we’d go to antique stores, craft stores, and really, every where.
Where we live is filled with antique stores. We’re also close to a ton of small Texas towns like Gruene, Johnson City, Blanco, all of which have a lot of antique shops as well as Texas gift shops. And that was my inspiration and starting point, Texas gifts. I started with Christmas ornaments and photographs and I kept running with that theme.
I’ve slowly been adding new products like coasters and signs, and I’m always thinking of what else I could add.
The biggest hurdle for me was the name and branding. I was making things before I even had any of that in mind. I’m big on names and branding (hi, I’m a marketer), and the name for this had to be perfect. The name is what has held me back for so long. It had to be a strong name that would reflect what I would make and sell. Quality products with a vintage flair.
But not just the name, the look of how I would present my products and my store. I probably drove Ali nuts with this back and forth on the name, but one day on a drive back to New Braunfels from Houston I had her trapped in the car for two hours and I was adamant that we’d have a name when we got home. After an hour or so we had a list, with one definite option.
As soon as we pulled in the driveway I ran into the house and set up the store name on Etsy. I began working on a logo and branding. It needed to be simple, bold, and timeless. The packaging also had to reflect the store’s brand, and I think I did just that.
I haven’t been promoting the store at all while I was adding more products and trying to make sure everything was perfect. However, people starting finding and favoriting some items here and there. After a few weeks I made my first sale, and I was ecstatic. Since then I’ve managed to sell a few Christmas ornaments and tile coasters without really announcing to my circle of the Internet that I embarked on this project. I had something in the back of my head that I had to be “finished”. I needed to have all the products that I had in my head on the store before I started promotion. Well, that’s crazy. I’ll never be done, so I was just delaying this because I’m a crazy person.
But not anymore.
Now I’m ready and very excited to cut the digital ribbon on The Restorative.
Vintage inspired designs and creations using wood, fabric, photography, and a little blood, sweat, and tears. And maybe some slight cursing. Also, whiskey.