I am thinking of setting up a "craft-based" character is Skyrim - with the challenge to use Smithing/Enchanting/Alchemy and Speech to build up wealth while avoiding the normal kill, loot, and sell approach.
From experience, it's hard to make/sell things without losing a lot of money in the process. For example, a leather strip (3 gold) and an iron ingot (7 gold) can be smithed into an iron dagger (10 gold) - which is a grand profit of no gold.
Even using enchanting/soul gems and "high value" enchantments like "Fortify Sneak" doesn't deliver a good return. Although, since previous characters have been combat/magic/sneak-focused, I haven't put a lot into "Speech" perks.
Is there an effective/profitable approach to a "crafting" style of gameplay or do the in-game economics make it pretty much impossible?