Wow, Miss Misery, are those samples of your work? They're amazing!!!
I dabble. Which means that I knit, cross-stitch, decorate cakes, bake, craft, do web design, etc. I haven't gotten *too* much of a request for free stuff, but it depends. I did have a coworker ask me to make Christmas stockings for her kids, after I'd been making them for my family. She asked me what I'd want for them. That's a *really* hard question for a knitter! Because, even though these stockings use the cheapest of cheap yarn, so supplies aren't too expensive, there are hours and hours and hours of work involved. But actually charging a decent hourly wage would make them ridiculously expensive. I asked her for $50 a stocking, which is about the most money that I thought would seem reasonable, and yet with probably $10 of yarn and 30 hours of knitting, plus a few extra hours in design work as she wanted custom pictures on them (guessing, I didn't count hours)... But she was my best friend at work and while I'm not sure I would have been willing to spend that much time to do it for free, the money took the edge off.
In general, though, I think dabbling is really the key. It keeps you from being *so* skilled in any one hobby that everybody wants your stuff.
Oh, and to the PP who talked about the hours and hours she spent knitting stuff that just wasn't any good before she got to the point where she could knit well... is it pathetic that my first thought there was that that was exactly my experience with learning to play StarCraft (a computer game) in college?