I have about ten years experience,a following,and talent,but not much $$ . I'm afraid to take a leap of faith and leave my modest hourly salary for the unknown. Will the cord break, or will I excell????
You don't need a lot of money, I started mine in 1976 with $250.00. Since your broke, you'll have to build it on sweat. " The harder you work, the luckier you get." Don't try to build it part time, go all the way with it, full time. Here's another one, " Nothing will build a business faster than fear " The last thing I've got to say is, once you commit yourself, burn this into your brain, NEVER QUIT, no matter what, that's what " go all the way" means. If your willing to work and tough it out, you WILL make it.
If you've got the guts, you'll gain the glory (or at least not have any boss but the mirror to complain to!) It DOES take a leap of faith to make the Big Move. However, if you stay where you are, things will go along the same. This means that in 5 years you will still be there. On the other hand, in 5 years in your own business, you could be the head of a successful business. Or you could fail and go back to being what you were in the first place. There are always jobs (at least in our area) for competent framers. So you won't be any worse off in five years if you give it a shot. All of us on the Grumble will say, "Go for it" because we did, and have lived to tell the tale. Just do your homework. Take a couple of busniness courses, contact SCORE, read read read. But don't wait forever, because time will slip by, and people generally become more nervous about risk as they get older (not me, of course
) And let us know! We get vicarious thrills watching new businesses succeed!
Timing is a huge issue here as well. It might be wise to plan for your new business to open in the fall so you can take advange of a busier framing season. Late fall, running into the holiday season is usually the busiest time of the year for custom framing.
Not to be the pessimist here but just remember one other thing everyone here has succeeded but the ones who have failed are not here to tell about it. There are a lot of framers who have a second income in their family that makes it possible for them to continue their pursuit of framing these are false Profits beware. Keep this in mind. You do have to be a risk taker. The ones who succeed are the ones who do the leg work before they start. They are the ones who continue to do the leg work after they have committed. Join PPFA go to the web page get books on the business end of it and go for it. Remember Demand, Location & Overhead? You do have to spend money to make money.
Show me someone who has not failed at something. You will probably be looking at someone who has never really tried to do anything Challanging.
I do hope that you have SOMETHING other than framing to occupy your time. your profile had only framing as your interests. You will need more than that or it will run you into the ground. I am talking about hobbies, recreation, anything that you can use to get away from the shop occasionally.
I am one of the Grumblers who can honestly say that I haven't "made it" yet. I am in a depressed area of the country, the interest in fine art and framing is marginal, and I have given it my best for over 6 years at my present location. I am getting by but I am also planning to move as soon as I can unload my business property.
You should be very alert to the demographics of the area in which you plan to open your shop. And you must plan to invest every penny you make back into the business for a long while to get your client base built up to a tolerable level and get your name out in the public and well known. I am in a rural area which makes the job of getting out there and pulling in business all that much harder. The population base is very important if you want to grow. If you are located in a large population base, the chances of your advertising paying dividends is much higher than if you are in a low population area.
I wish you all the luck in this world and hope that you will stick here with this Grumbler "family" to come to with your questions, problems, and triumphs as you start out on your new adventure.
BTW, I have just returned from a fabulous day in the woods sitting around a fire with my Laborador and the beauty and sounds of nature all around me. This is my escape. I find it easy to relax and temporarily forget about the rigors of running a small business out there. The dog spent most of the afternoon in the lake and I spent it simply in a quiet passive state of calm and relaxation which is all I need to give me the energy to push forward come the beginning of the work week.
If I didn't love framing so much, I'd probably be running a OTR rig right now. My son is making 6 figures driving and that's alot more than I have seen in my business. But you will find that the money is there when you need it and there is no amount of money that can replace the satisfaction of loving your work.
An Afterthought: Decide how much of the work you will do in your shop and buy the best equipment you can afford right off. I outfitted my shop 12 years ago with a C&H mat cutter, Fletcher Oval cutter and wall cutter, a 4366 Seal vacuum press, a 9009 Euro underpinner, and chop saws. The only piece of equipment I probably would not buy right away if I were starting out again knowing what I know about the area I am in would be the vacuum press. It gets used but not like I expected it would. Treat your equipment like you would your BEST friend. That is the backbone of your work and the quality and workmanship you put out will be reflected in the way your equipment is maintained.
If you want be be a picture framer develop your talents and find the businesses that have the best pay and most for YOUR future. If you want to be a business owner then once again develop your talents as a framer and then READ, READ, READ. Get as much information on opening and running a business as you can and then stuff a little more in. Working for others can give you great experience in "How to run a business" and "How NOT to run a business". Start a business plan, set up the systems for your business and after you do all the research and your ready, JUMP IN. Just remember being a picture framer is much different than being a business owner.
As far as fear goes, We are all afraid. It's just a matter of what you do about it. Those who face their fears succeed those who don't fail.
Go for it!
Research. Business plan. Plan A. Plan B.
I started in my home (OUT of town) in a third bedroom. Kept another job for "real" paycheck while I paid off a loan that financed the equipment. (All used: 1st, a matcutter, small hotpress, then later a chopper and a larger press)I took baby steps until I had the goods paid off and some loyal customers. Then I quit the other job and took a plunge for a store with loan #3.
(I'm a risk taker, but I like to sleep at night.)
Grab every bit of education that you can. You CAN be successful!! Lots of us have done it. Most of us have not had lots of money in the bank!