Late last night, inspiration stuck in a rather aggravating way. It must have been a few days since I saw the young man on the subway holding his iPod in its little cloth bag and thought “Hmm, I could make and sell those.” And it’s been over a week since I had the same thoughts after reading Fabulously Broke’s post on iPod skins, cases, and covers.
So why does inspiration wait until I’m drifting off to sleep on a Sunday night? I don’t know. Maybe it has a sick sense of humor.
Not one to bite a gift inspiration in the mouth (wait, that doesn’t parse), I immediately got to work this morning (while on the phone with the guys trying to fix my work computer). I didn’t make the pattern for the cases themselves, but rather for the iPods.
Since I don’t have one of my own, I’m going to have to make my own “iPods.” I got the dimensions online and plan to sew little stuffed rectangles which are the same size as the classic iPod, the 1st & 2nd generation nano, and the new nano. This way, I’ll be able to check my case/cover patterns.
I’m not going to just throw something together; I’m going to take this seriously with real patterns and prototypes and the like. In my experience, that’s the best way to respond to inspiration. Otherwise it becomes a good idea that just sits in the back of your consciousness. If you’re lucky, it’ll come out again and you can use it. If you start on it right away, on the other hand, you can channel some of that same energy and excitement. I don’t want my lack of sleep to be for nothing!
My plan is to use my wonderful leftover fabric to make the cases. Some simple, some reversible, some embroidered or appliquÃ©d (and possibly reversible too). That way it’s a small initial investment, just time. I’ll have to pay some money to list them, of course (unless I have my own site..but that could be tricky), but it’s only a few cents per listing, which I can afford. And they’ll only cost 41 cents to ship.
Next, I’m going to figure out where exactly to list them (and where to advertise them) and when the best time to put them up would be if I want to catch the black Friday-Cyber Monday shoppers (hey, we may not approve of them, but if they want my cases, they’re welcome to ’em).
If these sell, I’ll either buy more fabric or make more quilts and use the leftovers. It would take hundreds of cases to exhaust my supply, but I might go in for some colors/patterns which I just don’t have now. The stuff I’m using is pretty cheap for the amount I’ll need per case (after all, iPods are tiny!!! you can get so much out of a yard of fabric–45″ x 36″ !!!).
Baby steps to freedom from Mondays and freedom from debt!
Postscript: And while this isn’t part of my immediate plan for the future, I wandered past a shop today which does tailoring and dressmaking. I’m going to stop by there in the next few weeks to ask the proprietor just how people get started in this business, whether they take interns, what places offer good classes, and so forth. I’m a good seamstress, but there’s a few places where I have less experience and could use lessons or practice before I’d ever do it for a living. Just talking to the man/lady will be a baby step towards one of my dreams!
Post-postscript: And what if I’m left with a couple dozen little cases on my hands in a few months? Can I say presents for all my friends?