I find the above question to be an interesting one because it really can be read in different ways. I think a persons perspective on it would change based on where they are coming from in game and maybe even in real life as well.
Someone in my guild mentioned something about the price of flasks on the auction house and I replied, I never worry about the price because I make my own. This is completely true.
Ever since I first started the game, even before I had a max level character, my intention was to be self sufficient. I wanted to make sure I never needed to buy something that I would be capable of making it on my own. Sure I would then need to invest time instead of gold but to me that is what playing the game was all about, investing time.
You either invest the time trying to make gold so you can buy the things you need or you invest the time to build up your personal network so you do not need to buy them at market prices and can make it yourself. No matter how you look at it, making gold or making items, you are still investing time to get the item.
They then asked a follow up question, why don't I make extra flask to sell, and that is what got me thinking. I really don't make extra to sell because I am not actually in need of gold. I never, or should I say rarely, ever set out specifically to make gold because I feel I have enough for what I want. But sometimes when I hear things are going for outrageously stupid prices I will make a few extra to sell because why the hell not.
If I were to think about it as "what if I bought" the stuff I made for myself instead of investing my time, what would it cost me? Lets just take the other night. I got a new cloak, which the enchant for it sells at 6K, I made it myself. I used two flasks that night which cost 200 gold each on the auction house, I made those myself. I used maybe a stack of healing tonics which go for about 5 gold each meaning 100 gold, which I made for myself and a stack of potions, which go for 30 gold each which means 600 gold, and I made them myself as well. So if I actually went out and spent money for the night I would have spent over 7,000 gold for one nights raiding and it cost me nothing. Nothing but time of course.
It made me think about the people that do not have their own enchanter, their own alchemist, and their own first aid leveled. They would be out of their pocket over 7K for the night whereas I spent nothing.
I have been so self sufficient for so long and I do not mind the time it takes to level the professions and make sure I have the materials because to me that is just part of playing the game. I actually like leveling professions and knowing that I can make anything I ever need for myself. I am never going out of my way to get these things, they just come to me during my general playing of the game. But being I have been so self sufficient for so long I think I lost touch with how expensive this game has become for those that are not.
I never know what the prices for enchants are on the market because if I need one I make it. I never know what the prices are for gems on the market because if I need one I make it. Even with the new 30 slot bags when a friend told me they are 12K on the market I said, are you kidding me, I just made one for my hunter today, it only takes a few days to make one, how can they be so expensive.
Then he said, effectively you just spent 12K on that bag. I said, no I didn't, I made it with materials I had anyway as I leveled tailoring and I was not using them for anything else so if I did not make something with them it would have gone to waste. And that is where we differed and I wonder which side of the line people think on in regards to things like this.
He said if I sold it I would have made 12K. So by using it that means it is the same as if I spent 12K on it. He does have some logic to his thinking. If I sold it I could have sold it for 12K, then waiting 3 months and when the market is flooded with them buy 4 for the price I sold the one for. But like I said, if I did that it would thinking of making gold, and I rarely think that way. I thought more along the lines of, oh my god I need more bag space.
So do you think of it as spending money when you craft something for yourself?
Using the bag as an example, if you used the bag would you consider it as spending 12K?
New topic, or call it a tip if you will.
A couple of weeks ago before the raids opened when a guild mate mentioned he was going to craft some gear for himself I gave him a tip. Don't craft gear for yourself. Sell everything instead and wait for the raid to open up.
He had multiple barns running, some crafters, and other support characters running. He took my advice. He started selling savage bloods, some crafted pieces, anything he could sell.
Now he has purchased every single 665 BoE, 670 BoE and 676 BoE that he can get his hands on from the market and is still making gold hand over fist selling the savage bloods instead of using them to upgrade the crafted gear he never made, on my advice to ignore it.
He said thank you for the tip and is now much better geared than if he has crafted the gear for himself.
The thing is, this tip still works, but the market is drying up for it. Do not craft yourself crappy gear and then spend a million and one resources to upgrade it. Craft the base 640 / 630 stuff, sell it cheap, and sell all those savage bloods and sorcerous elements to the people that want to upgrade a 640 to a 655 and use their gold to buy a 676 instead. Trust me, you will be the winner in the end.
There is a time to craft for yourself to save money, and a time to sell everything and buy later. Blizzard, with the excessive amount of materials needed for crafted gear and the much better item level BoEs out there, basically made the decision for you. Sell low level items, buy high level ones. Enjoy.