Craft Business Tips: Never Stop Learning

We've been doing this leathercraft thing for nearly 7 years now.  It's really kind of weird to think about how a casual mid summer conversation about leather book covers turned into all of this.  We didn't know an awl from an edger back then.  We had never heard of the term "veg tan."  It was easy to discover something new because we didn't know any of it.  Fast forward to right now.  We're still learning.  We're still developing.  Not a week goes by that we don't learn something new and wonder at the possibilities for how we could do things better. 

When it comes to craftwork of any kind, there really is no "good enough."  There may be at various points a sense of "as good as my current skills will allow", but saying something is good enough is akin to saying that no further growth is possible.  This may be a product of apathy, frustration, a lack of humility, or any number of factors.

Growing in any business requires the humility of acknowledging what you don't know and also of asking whether there's a better method, tool, process or material than the ones you're using.  Failure to ask these questions will likely only resort in a plateau, which can be difficult to overcome.  Business is already challenging enough.  It's even more challenging if you're stubborn.  Don't make life hard on yourself.

As for the craft side of your craft business, for any given craft, there are certain fundamentals which are the building blocks of anything you might create. Don't think that because these are "basics" that they can be quickly learned and then put away in favor of more advanced techniques.  It doesn't work that way.  Imagine building a house with a really terrible foundation.  It doesn't matter how nice the house is on top of it, the faulty foundation will bring ruin to the house in due course.

It's important not only to know what the fundamentals of your craft are, but to continually hone your skills with them.  A higher level of aptitude with the fundamentals will inevitably lead to higher quality end products.  Each skill builds upon the others.  

Also don't be too proud to seek assistance from those with more knowledge.  It's so easy to find just about anything you could want to know these days.  A quick search on YouTube and you'll be up to your neck in tutorials.  Especially if you're self taught, as we were with Inkleaf, it's important to circle back even on things you think you know.  You may discover another perspective which deepens your understanding, or something helpful, even essential, that you missed.  

Never stop learning!


For more Craft Business Tips, check out the posts linked below!