I own a bead and jewelry store in Utah. A very good program for
tracking materials in this kind of business is called MYOB. (Mind
Your Own Business). It's worked very well for me in that I can
take some of my loose beads, and all the other individual materials
and combine them for the cost of goods for the bracelet, necklace or
earrings I make from them. You can do the same thing for
silver/gold materials, etc. (If you go to a computer company to have
them "build" your computer it's cheaper and they can add the
software pkg for much less!)
Yes you do need to keep track of cost of goods, and your showcase
would be in furniture, fixtures, etc. These all need to be kept
track of for tax purposes.
If you can't afford a CPA, try taking a community accounting class.
It will be invaluable to let you know what you NEED to keep track of,
even if you end up going to the CPA. (I was an accounting clerk for
more years than I liked).
Hang on for a wild ride. You are in an area of high competition, so
you may need to offer something that can't be found readily in your
area. People (especially on lists like these) tried to tell me NOT to
open the business. Even though the first year was a nightmare, I'm
glad I did it and wouldn't change a thing. Just celebrated my 5th
year in business.