EP Laser Engraving Shows Off Endless Possibilities In Ornaments and Gifts
Our first $2,000 of sales for a single item made us realize the potential of turning a craft hobby into a legitimate business. We started off selling ornaments and book boxes at flea markets but shifted to selling on Amazon (before hand crafted was a thing on there).
Started As A Hobby
EP Laser started as a father/daughter laser engraving hobby and evolved into 4 generations contributing to the business. We started with ornaments, beads, and jewelry and quickly adapted to custom requests.
When my dad and I first saw the laser engraving machine, we saw the potential. We really wanted to make unique, custom items for people…but it turned out that not everyone is necessarily creative.
Since we didn’t have a clue how to show off our skills, we made a ton of items and went to flea markets to sell our items. We sold them cheap…really cheap…like, we probably lost money cheap.
After our first several months of doing this and not making any money (we made sales, but no profit)…I decided to try our products on Amazon.
Sold Our First Item On Amazon Within 24 Hours
Even though we were fulfilling our own items (instead of Amazon fulfilling the orders), we still made a sale within the first 24 hours. We learned a big lesson.
There is still demand for items that are not personalized or custom. This helped us focus on creating a base of ready-made items such as ornament sets and beads.
Even though our competition sold an individual ornament for the same price we sold an entire set of ornaments, we wanted to focus on value for our customers. We still offered personalization and custom options when possible, but increased our range of ready-made gift items.
Mass Production Of Custom Items
Our favorite projects tend to be custom projects. Over the years, we have worked with several other crafters to offer something unique to their products.
From engraving the lids of specialty boxes, the lids of wine barrels, pens and pen sets, knife handles, and cutting dozens of custom projects – we helped others build their businesses. We still do, too!
In addition to supporting other small businesses, we also created a line of smaller production custom items. For example, wedding invitations (and wedding favors), birthday invitations and decorations, and other celebration favors.
From Father And Daughter To 4 Generations
Even though EP Laser started out as a father/daughter hobby, we evolved. My dad had started to help his father (my grandpa) more after my grandma passed away.
Since they spent so much time together, my grandpa decided to join the team and help us manufacture our ready-made items as well as make connections locally.
Around the same time, my daughter showed an interest in the business. She is now 7, but when she was 4 she decided she wanted to be a part of EP Laser.
Now, legally – it’s not official, but she does love to help with packaging and design advice (as well as motivating her mommy).
After adding my grandpa and my daughter, our team of 4 spans 4 generations. We also get help and input from other family members and friends.
Growing EP Laser To EP Universe
EP Laser was the start of our business adventures. As we continue to learn and grow, we’re set to expand operations (a pesky pandemic slowed that down a little).
Over the next several years, we plan to expand beyond laser engraving into other areas. For now, we’ll let it be a surprise…but just know we have a lot more coming your way!