Make them drool.

As a small business owner, as an artisan: you have to spin a web of product deliciousness that appeals to your customers. This is something I think about frequently as I decide how to price things: it can be tempting to think “no one would pay that price for that item” but that’s simply not true … it’s actually quite a hurdle to obtain the skill, set up all the tools, and not everyone wants to go through that process. And thus they’ll gladly hand over the money and consider it well-spent.

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Take this table, for instance.

We calculated that with a couple thousand worth of tools, and another couple thousand for wood and hardware, we could make our own version of this table. But we have a base of knowledge for this type of craft, we have the room to store said tools, and we have the room to actually construct this beautiful thing. Not everyone has that, or wants to have that, and so they plunk down $15k and are happy with their purchase (even I would plunk down the cash if I had it … it’s gorgeous).

So the moral of Monday is don’t sell yourself short. Charge accordingly; there will be some who want Amazon pricing and they’ll move on, but you’ll capture the attention of those who know quality when they see it and are willing to spend to obtain it.

Art On, my friends!

I fixed a problem and created a new one.

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This is very teas-ish of me but I don’t have pictures of the problem I created because I was almost too exhausted to stand by the time we were at a stopping point. But that’s the middle of the story …

So I fixed the problem of the hinge. I love stab-bound books, I love the way they look, but I HATED the way the cover would curl back once you used it if you used paper, and the first hardcover version had what I call a “hinge problem”-the stress on the paper when you bent the cover back was fairly extreme, and I was worried that eventually it would tear. So I sat on the problem for a bit and thought “Duh! Leather!” And so I constructed this beautiful baby.

Tada! Hinge problem solved, I’ve got more styles on the docket, yay for Becca!

And then, as I do, I talked to Kerry about my plans and vision for Wordsremember and lamented my lack of space. At the same time I proposed a few changes that could be made, if he wanted, to his “man cave” area that is not mine to touch or do anything with. This weekend he decided to act on my words and we rearranged half the house.

I now have a huuuuuuuuuuuge room that is mine to do with as I please. And that’s the part I don’t have pictures of. Yet. Mebbe Wednesday.

I’m happy about this space, but I’m also terrified: what if my business flops? What will I DOOOOOOOOO? What did I get myself into? Do I actually have the skill to put all my plans into motion? Self-doubt self-doubt yadda yadda yadda. You artistic/creative types know the drill. In true common-sense fashion Kerry said “we could just make it our craft room if we have to” and that was that, my freak-out was over, now to organize and implement all the shenanigans I have in my head. It is also time to start keeping a business planner …. I waste a lot of time because I don’t -have- to keep to a schedule, I’m technically only supposed to be doing this part-time since I still have a toddler with me. But to launch my own website (again, I’ve actually tried it twice, third time is the charm!), apply to wholesale, design new lines … I need to manage my time better.

And that is my Monday: cleaning, organizing, planning. What are you up to today? Remember to always Art On:)

When your glasses get scratched you plan for the apocalypse.

A month ago I noticed that the right side of my glasses was scratched. Since the left side was clear and eyes are wonderful and compensated, I ignored the scratch (because of my deep dislike of calling people and making appointments) until the left side started showing problems and now IT IS THE END OF THE WORLD.

To make matters worse, nope, I don’t have backup. I lost my backup glasses in the move, and I don’t have contacts because until fairly recently we didn’t have vision insurance and contacts were just out of reach for us. Believe you me, I am now taking advantage of having vision insurance and getting backup. I’m going in today to see if I can just reorder my old prescription and get the ball rolling (it takes up to TWO WEEKS …. why can’t I just throw money at people and make it come faster? Yes I know how privileged I sound, I am not proud) and will see if I can go in Friday and have my eyes fitted for contacts, so I’ve done what I can to make sure I can see my kids’ faces.

But as anyone who depends on vision correction knows, suddenly not having clear vision is an anxiety-producing event. I once lost my glasses at sailing camp (and now that I think about it I think I had angels there, making sure I didn’t lose consciousness and fall into the water … I’m glad I didn’t think about that as a kid) and due to familial circumstances I went three days (it may have been shorter but my young brain imprinted THREE WHOLE DAYS) without glasses, really not being able to see a thing. It was awful, and I’m not taking the current situation all that well because of that memory.

And it got me thinking … what would I do if we had a cataclysmic event and I no longer had access to glasses? How would that affect my art (let’s forget that in a cataclysmic event art probably won’t be a priority and I won’t have access to materials)? My first thought was to go completely abstract-big, bold paints on huge canvases-but I also could still arm knit, I could draw with the help of a magnifying glass of some sort, and the same goes for bookbinding. So all would not be lost, and that, funnily enough, was a comforting thought. Along with the remembering that my Nook can increase the letters to a size I can read without glasses …. I am finally calming down a bit.

So! After I go in to the office I start my countdown to new glasses, and I get back to work because even in a post-apocalyptic world with no access to glasses Art goes On.

Wordless Wednesday: A New Look for Older Artwork

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