The greatness of any business plan is not in the plan's thorough rigidity, but in the writer's flexibility. Circumstances change. In a game of survival, adaptation wins.
After a lot of thought, it seems to me that the web store needs to open prior to April 1. For several reasons... but most chiefly is to try out this grand design of mine. I could create the bestest plan in the whole wide world and if the product sucks, then it's not worth a damn. Or if the web site doesn't do what it needs to do, then I've got a problem on my hands. The wrong time to fix that is when I'm getting the retail store market going. Better to work out those kinks now, when the volume can be low and problems fixed quickly and without the distraction of order fulfillment.
So, the grand opening of the online store is now sometime in February. To do that, I've ordered the card stock and envelopes that I need and I'll print them myself. If that works well, I may just continue to do that and forego the employment of a printer for a while until the volume is simply too much. One side benefit of this strategy is that I can respond more quickly to a surge in demand of a design style. Flowers sell? Paint more flowers. People sell? Paint more people. This way, I'm not weighted down with an abundance of extra cards that no one wants.
I've learned that getting the customer's information to process the order is a longer code cycle than I expected. I'll slip past January 31, but only by a few days. Once I have the basics of the order capture down, I'll start to paint and release cards in a gradual and weaved way with the coding that remains. I'll let intuition drive the development.
And I miss painting. I'm anxious to see what will happen. So I tweak the model. I'm tired of programming at the moment... I'm excited for the time that I cease using that skill so much.