Big Bang Theory and Penny Blossoms - yes, business related

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Original Post

I always try to catch Big Bang Theory on Monday nights on CBS. I find it funny and relatable since I married an engineer. I was chuckling extra hard last night as Penny started her own craft business making "Penny Blossom" hair clips.

I kept thinking of Etsy and all the small shop owners here. Penny was quite excited that the girls where she works wanted some of her clips and a lady with a boutique wanted to carry them. "I made $156 this week, Sheldon!" "If this really takes off I won't have to be a waitress all my life."

Sound familiar? I know I daydream about my shop taking off to full time income status. Sheldon had to be the voice of reason though. "Penny, how much do you make on each Penny Blossom?" Her reply, "I dunno." "Of course you don't." Now, Sheldon is a physicist and is all about hard numbers, but this coversation was one I've seen many times on the forums here.

It's hard to know if you can make a living until you figure out your production time, profit per piece, and workable hours per week/month/year.

As the show progressed the techie friends had built Penny a storefront online (I'm thinking "Go to Etsy!") and then the real trouble began. A huge order of 1000 Penny Blossoms.... with a 1 day rush service. Rut roh!

The Penny Blossoms did get done with the help of friends, refined manufacturing process to significantly reduce production time, work chanting songs, and coffee.

I know it was just a sit come, but I highly recommend it to all Etsy sellers. Very funny and actually hit on a lot of the issues we all face here, especially when starting up or trying to take our shops to the next level.

Hope I wasn't the only one who saw it and though immediately of my own Etsy shop.

Posted at 8:04am Mar 17, 2009 EDT


deby0 says

I saw it and loved it! I watch the show all the time.

I thought of etsy and how it would be so cool if it was mentioned and she had a store here on the show.

Posted at 8:08am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

Yes, I thought it was hilarious too, but it definitely resonated with me, and had me thinking about pricing again...

$0.20 profit per Penny Blossom - nope, she wasn't going to get to quit her day job anytime soon...

Posted at 8:08am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

eyeful says

I didn't see the show-- it sounds interesting!

But I have been doing some hard thinking about numbers-- prices, number of items to sell, how many hours it takes to print all those photographs. I had always thought that I would get real with the numbers later, and I guess "later" is finally now. :)

I have been asking myself if I would be ready for big rush of orders-- and I'm getting ready, ordering supplies, trying to streamline my packing & shipping.

It definitely looks like a lot of work to become a full-time artist with a decent income, but it's not out of reach! I'm on my way. :)

Thanks for the post!

--Tricia McKellar

Posted at 8:11am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

I saw the show too and instantly thought of all the hair clips on etsy. yes, and the line where she says I'll give you $0.20 for each one for helping and they told her that was her entire profit margin, I thought the same thing...shouldn't she know that. lol

Posted at 8:14am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

I saw it too, and thought about sellers here, how we're so focused on trying to make good products that marketing and sales don't get as much attention. I'm definitely learning you have to balance it all to make things work!

My husband and I love that show!!

Posted at 8:17am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

rverk47 says

that sounds like a conversation i've had with my husband..your all excited about some sales then he has to hit ya in the face with reality..i'll have to dvr it, i never stay up late..

Posted at 8:17am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

I was seriously laughing my butt off:

Posted at 8:31am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

That is hysterical, and so true! I should have watched that instead of Dancing with the Stars. Thanks for posting the link Merlin!

Posted at 8:38am Mar 17, 2009 EDT

That was really funny!
And yes, that's the kind of conversation I am always having with my husband.

Posted at 8:39am Mar 17, 2009 EDT