nancy, thank you for bringing this up again. i had not finished the entire thing when it first appeared and today i read it all.
can you tell us what you have been doing lately? the pet urn idea seems like a winner, something you like to do and a business that can work anywhere you might choose to live. there are pets everywhere and veterinarians all over so the possibilities seem unlimited.
i had an idea last fall but did nothing about it because of timing and fear of success. there are many specialty magazines catering to people who do all kinds of things. one i checked out was for chicken owners. the potential market was the 70,000 subscribers to the magazine. the item would be a gift with a chicken featured somehow. if i remember correctly, the percentage of responses to a random advertising mailing was considered good if 1% responded. so i thought if i could reach that 1% with an advertisement cost of $175 for december, i might sell 700 small items that way. it was too scary for right then so i filed it away with the rest of the get-rich-quick schemes stored way back in my head.
what if you took out an ad for your urns in a pet magazine after building up a pile of stock to supply the buyers? there are tons of them, dogs only, cats only, etc.
I am kind of in the same boat as you are - i have a crazy busy vet near me they said I could hang a flyer with my urns, or I could do a Facebook ad like someone here told me, but what if I get a ton or orders? I still have trouble throwing over 3 pounds, plus I still work full time. So i haven't done anything but add a shopify stand along site to etsy.
I am tying my work into my spiritual practice, which is shamanism. Lots of power animals, etc. i have been handbuilding a lot more, took an animal sculpture lesson. I just never have time. It is the one thing i wish i had more of. I did apply to, and got into, a pretty big show near me, so i have to make stuff for that. I'm making Keepsake Urns, colorful, for all occasions: births, marriage, graduations, deaths. I can sell them at a show as is. I have been making medicine bags to go with some of these urns if they want it. So I am slowly puloing all of my passions together.
The chicken idea is good. Find a niche. My friends rescues ferrets, and tells me she know hundreds of ferret owners who would love a handbuilt ferret bath house! I just can't even explore that right now. Another woman on etsy wanted to give up her niche of making discs for canning - she did 3 or 4 thiusand a year in just that. I still make some jewelry, too, so I am working on incorporating that into the pottery, too.
The amazing thing is that I was really liking silversmithing more, but I fell back in love with clay - i think it is the connection with Mother Earth that gets me. I just have to be able to center again.
I have you phone number still - would you still want to talk!