Currently I’ve got my products in two stores: I Like You in Minneapolis and Nature’s Blessings in Pennsylvania. My partner and I have been actively trying to get ourselves in other stores, but it’s been a slightly uphill battle.
One store has been impossible to get a hold of. Granted, my partner and I work full time, and can’t really make phone calls during the day. When we can make phone calls, they aren’t open. We have a deadline, though, and we’re sticking to it. We actually want to hit as many stores that day as humanly possible, so we’ll see where that gets us.
There is a major question that keeps coming up: What is a fair cut for the shop selling your item? A general consensus is that 60/40 is the most common break down. It’s what we follow at I Like You, and I’ve heard of many other stores with the same split. Some shops charge a rental fee instead of commission. We rent space at Nature’s Blessings at a relatively reasonable price.
But what to do when it feels like the shop is taking advantage of the artists they are seeking? The obvious choice is to say no to the store. There’s really no question about that, but past that, what can you do? It sucks to sit by and watch as someone takes advantage of the independent artist community. It’s a bit like being able to see the hint of some horns from under their hat, and not being able to warn anyone about them.
If artists and crafters had some sort of a union, we’d be able to band together to get the fairness we deserve. I’m not saying shop owners don’t deserve 40% or even 50%. There’s a lot of money and hard work that goes into a brick and mortar, work and money I don’t have to give. But I shouldn’t be expected to shell out what amounts to three days of labor every month. Not when I’m not getting anything in return to make it worthwhile.
Maybe this will come back to bite me in the butt someday, but I’m willing to take that chance. If I don’t stand up for myself, who will?
FOs are, hands down, better than UFOs. I mentioned some time ago that I learned how to knit. My first project was a scarf. Between work, the craft show, and friends and family, it was a pretty slow project as far as scarves go. Not to mention the fact that I made it a rather tightly knit scarf; which is not to say that I am a tight knitter–I’m not–but I used size 11 needles and only one strand of yarn.
It’s a solid scarf. It’s long, and soft, and wide. It’s perfect for this nasty cold winter we’re having. It’s pink. And black. And blue! Three of my favorite colors, but I had no idea how much I would like them together! It’s made with Jo-Ann Sensations Angel Hair yarn in Pink/Grey.
Now, here’s a sneak peak at what I’m working on next:
Are those DPNs? Why yes, yes they are.
My advertising campaign (read: nagging) seems to have worked. I recognized a ton of faces in the crowd, which was a huge boost. I think everyone I
dragged there invited purchased something, so that gives me warm fuzzies. It’s really lovely to see people supporting local crafters.
Rumor has it (okay, it’s not a rumor, I saw him with my own eyes), a local celebrity goes to every local craft fair. I remember him (actually, I remember his wife) from the last Handmaidens’ sale. I shant spill the beans in order to keep mobs of news groupies (oh, I’ve said too much!) from stalking him at the sales. It’s goofy, but I was really excited to see him there. And his family members have purchased a ridiculously large number of Cozy Corset Cuffs.
And now it’s time to rest. But not for long. 2008 is the year of the craft sale. We’ve just added one more to our already busy schedule! YeeHaw!
Seasoned performers say the stage fright never really goes away. You always have that anticipation, that excitement, tinged with a small bit of worry.
That’s how I’m feeling about tomorrow. I’ve done the craft sale thing (and to be honest, I’ve done it a million times before I started doing my own this winter), but I still don’t know what to expect tomorrow. I’m nervous.
What if I forget something important? What if no one buys the new products I’ve worked so hard on? What if the windchill is so cold (supposed to be -30 WC, dammit!) that no one in the state of Minnesota leaves the house?
But what if I do really well? What if we can barely keep up with the orders? What if I sell out? What if someone from a shop comes by and wants wholesale orders and I’m busy for the rest of my life?
I have no idea what to expect tomorrow, but I have my Saturday to-do list in front of me, and I have until 1:45 to get as much of it done as possible. Sleep deprived and bleary eyed, I will make it through tomorrow somehow.
It’s just a few more short days before the sale (and like last time, they are literally short because I’m working all the time), and I don’t want to work on a damn thing. Not one.
I’ve got my cozies and my totes mostly ready for the sale (finishing touches only), and I wanted to get a couple examples of our new line made, but I just don’t want to work on them. I looked at my fabric stash and stuck my tongue out. Bo-Ring.
But the stash must go! I need to work my stash down, and I need to work it down fast. I want it off my hands so I can fill it up again. Ha!
At any rate, I hope I feel better tonight than I did last night. I got a lot of workin’ to do! Weeeeeee.