Monthly Archives: March 2016

The Cost of Being Creative – Part 2

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The Cost of Being Creative – Part 2

So, I tried to get to this second part of the series on being creative and getting paid for it, but time flew, away and I find I’m a week late. Shame, shame, I know! I’m here now so let’s get going on the way to find markets for your creativity, if that’s what you seek.

There are many options to consider and things that must be figured out when searching for the right venue for your particular artwork/craft. I covered the craft show in part one, so let’s take a look at where else you can display and sell your work. There aren’t that many shops in my area that will take handcrafted items on consignment, but those that do usually pay 60/40 or 70/30. This means the artist receives 60% or 70% of the sale price and the shop is earning the remainder. Remember, you are giving up money to show and display your work, so price it accordingly. Don’t undersell yourself just because you’ve researched what others are getting for work similar to yours, be competitive and consider what you and your work is worth. I’m not being mean or bossy, I simply want you to make enough money to cover your costs, time, and make a profit in the end.

There are online shops that don’t charge much for displaying your work, and they have good reputations. http://www.artfire.com; http://www.etsy.com; and even http://www.ebay.com are a few. These places charge a percentage of sales or they charge a fee for having a shop. Make sure to read the FAQs before jumping in with both feet.

If you have a website, post your work there as well, add PayPal checkout to it, and then post those designs to Pinterest with the link to your website or online shop. Load photos onto Facebook and add your links to the post, then do the same with Twitter. There are a number of great ways to promote your work and generate sales. Be thorough, take good photos, and always follow-up with customers right away. Don’t leave them hanging for days, it’s bad business and shouts “unprofessional”.

I have a Storenvy shop, but haven’t done much with it yet. When I get it up and running, I’ll be sure to let you know how it’s going. No matter what, there is no free cost of doing business. There’s always money to be made, your brand to consider, and expenses that can be written off on your taxes at the end of the year. I consider my costs and travel as good write-offs.

This is it for this time. Next time round, I’ll talk about other avenues of getting your work out to the public. Good luck in your pursuits, and if I can help you in any way, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Happy Easter!!

The Cost of Being Creative – Part 1

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Having done craft shows for many years, I’ve found success in some and not-so-much success in others. I consider it part of the cost of being creative. First off, artisans never know what will strike a chord with consumers. It’s a serious guessing game, trending crafts tend to flood the market very quickly, and while we like to think our work is just that much more unique than the next artist’s on the block, it’s always a crap shoot.

As if I don’t have enough on my plate with writing, designing, and all that entails, I’m registered to do ten craft shows this year, beginning in June. This offers time enough for me to create merchandise that will “WOW” the public, so much so, that consumers will buy every piece of work in my booth. I know, you’re grinning, right? One can only hope that will be the case and work toward that goal by offering something different and being a good salesperson who can make the goal a reality.

In between time, I have plans to sell on Pinterest and might even get an Etsy shop going. I have a Storenvy shop that I haven’t completed setting up yet, and have heard some negative grumbling about that particular enterprise. Not sure how true the grumbling is, I won’t mention what I’ve heard.

Back to craft shows. . . If you do craft shows and fairs, then you know what I mean when I say selection of venue is paramount. I’ve done juried shows that appeared to be a great venue, yet once I got there, the show looked like a flea market which meant every consumer thought they could offer a mere fraction of the asking price.When reminded of the amount of work that went into the piece, the consumer didn’t consider it important. It’s the cost of being creative. But really? I refuse to reduce my price to make a sale, though there are lots of things I do offer to engage the customer. This new venue I’ve decided to participate with is a great spot, has talented vendors, and I look forward to being there to sell my work once or twice per month from June through December. Let’s hope I meet with success, for it won’t be due to lack of trying!

Let me know if you do shows and what makes them successful for you. I’d love to hear about that. Next week I’ll talk about the second part of The Cost of Being Creative, so join me won’t you?