Mixing my Vintage Hobby with Business.

Hi hi!

This is a post I’ve been looking forward to writing for a little while now and think it’s really important to share!

As many of you know I’ve been dealing in Vintage clothing for years and years.
It’s where I begun my vintage journey, and I used to absolutely love it.  Anything to do with vintage fashion my heart would race, I’d treasure it, love it, research it, blog it, and of course wear it.

I loved the feel of clothing, touching vintage fabrics, discovering a great label, finding something really rare, learning about eras, shapes, putting together outfits, reading books, all the joys in loving vintage.

It was a great hobby at that time and couldn’t wait to turn it into a business, to get my own vintage clothing shop!

It was years and years before that happened, and as my vintage clothing business grew, my passion for vintage clothing grew less.  I found myself dreading looking through the dress isles knowing I had to buy things to sell that I didn’t particularly like, but what was on trend.  After years of build up, I just didn’t enjoy it any more, and it took it’s toll on my hobby. It wasn’t even a hobby anymore.  It was something I had to do to pay the bills.

I didn’t even want to wear vintage clothing myself anymore.  I still did, as that’s what my wardrobe consisted of, but the passion for it was lost and it was obvious.  I didn’t care about putting together a fabulous outfit, I just put on clothes to wear.

I was lucky though,  I loved the collectables & furniture side of vintage too, and I grew to love dealing in that as well.

It was late last year after at least a couple of years of not at all enjoying vintage clothing, when I began to love it again.  I then discovered two things.
How much I missed the love of Vintage clothing and wanted it back as a hobby again, and to do that, and get that feeling back for good,  I could no longer be a vintage clothing seller anymore.

I still had the collectables & furniture that I grew to love after the business had started, and so in my mind that’s always been business. But I really wanted clothing back and that’s why I made that decision.

That was the only way I could happily enjoy it again, and keep the passion going forever.

It was a big move for me!  I put my personal passion, high above money and business and sold ALL of my vintage clothing stock.  Every single piece.

The relief was amazing.  Such a weight off my shoulders.  I could re-begin my hobby, discover it again, and love it again, for me and me only.  And boy did I ever. I didn’t waste any time.

I became very quickly re-addicted to it.  I could now go and buy things for myself with no worrying about profits, or saleability, or condition.  If it was just for me to love and wear, I didn’t mind if it had a small stain, or a tiny tear to the hem, or what the price was.  I loved it.

It was also nice to be able to go to all the people who sell to me at markets and various places and say ‘I don’t deal in vintage clothing anymore, but I love it again.  Keep your eye out for xxxx for me… (for me!!!)’

I so needed this.  I have real passion back! It occupies my mind and I am head over heals in love with clothing again.  With bags and hats, and scarves, and costume jewellery, and frocks and petticoats, and nighties, and lingerie, and shoes, and everything vintage and ladylike.  Oh boy I’m back!!!!!!

This was the biggest and best decision I’ve made in many many years.

I converted the office at home into my own parlor where I keep all my fashion pieces so I have my own space of inspiration.  My own room where there’s no business, nothing but me and my new, old hobby.

Having no hobby was so hard, stressful and sad really.  I’m so much more alive now, so happy and so excited to be out and about hunting for cute things to wear myself! Yee!

I had a brief conversation with Cintia from My Poppet about it and she’s actually very soon going to do a talk about just that! About the importance of keeping hobby’s as your hobby.  Follow her blog to keep in touch about it all.

People are often under the impression that it’s the dream to turn your hobby into a business.  But once business is brought into the situation it can be really difficult to keep it fun. Don’t get me wrong, some people do it flawlessly.  This is just my experience.

Do keep in mind there are other ways to be a business woman/man without ruining your hobby.  You don’t necessarily need to buy & sell! You can blog! You can teach, you can share.  I’m not at all saying don’t aim to live your dream.  I really encourage it! Just before you do, work out a solid plan to ensure you can keep your hobby a hobby still and not get overwhelmed with the business side of it.
You see before you take the big leap into turning your hobby into a business,  you will always be 500% sure that you will never lose the passion for it… but business can change things a lot.  So make your plan, and have a hobby area AND a business area and you’ll be as happy as me…now! :):):)

On a less serious note, I’d like to share with you my latest finds.  It’s related I promise! See there’s no chance I ever would have found these, or even bought them if I had seen them, if I was in my previous passionless state.  I avoided everything clothing related when I was on the hunt, but now my eyes are back and I’m focused and looking EVERYWHERE for pretty things for myself.

So I’ve never been good with bags.  I rarely found nice ones, even many years ago when I was at my vintage clothing peek.  There were always lots of 80′s ones, glomesh, tooled leather, but the chances of finding a fab 1950′s or 60′s one was slim.  Very slim.  I use one bag every day and it’s not even really vintage.  That’s how bagless I am.

Just the day before I found these I literally said to Gareth ‘I’m over being bagless, I really need to find a bag or two, this one’s horrible.’

And then like a wizard clicked his fingers, in my little hands was all of THIS!

A 1960′s pink rafia handbag & a 1950s/60′s red lizard skin bag in a fab shape!

An amazing 1950′s handbag with green glitter section to the middle and a beautiful faux tortiseshell handle and clasp, and a perfect fabric bag with orange and pink roses all over. This will be a great one to match with frocks!

Yikes I love love grosgrain! This one is so detailed.  And I love the simple 50′s box bag too!

These two are 1920′s/30′s flapper bags.  They are AMAZING!

I’ve only ever seen these with the elephant missing! And this one is perfect. Hoorah.

And this is my favorite, and my new every day bag.  (whoohoo!)
It’s such a well made heavy quality piece but I can find no maker. :(
It’s from the 50′s.  It was the Grandmother’s of the lady I bought it from.
It’s really beautiful and I adore it.

I can’t imagine all the other things I’ve walked past over the years because my head wasn’t in it.

Well that’s my personal experience with mixing hobby with business.  I’m sure there’s many people who have found the perfect mix, I’m so glad that I now have.

Until my next post!

Trish Hunter xx