Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Looking at the positive side

Chessie likes to help me cut fabric and redraft patterns. Muffin hasn't discovered sewing yet, she's too busy climbing oak trees and kissing deer.

Why do I get into these things? I committed to make things for a local Christmas bazaar and then to sell them. I want to make things for fun and for the pure pleasure of working with colors, working with fabric, and trying out all kinds of techniques. But this is business, I'm making things to sell. I'm new here, I don't know the customers and am guessing based on who I saw last year. I popped into the show and noticed only retirees milling around. That's not a cross-section of who lives in this community, but I know the advertising didn't reach the others. Then I heard from others in shows on both coasts. So far no one is selling. It's not even that people walk around and look and don't buy. Now they're not even coming to the event. So mom is preparing me for disappointment.

I say even if my show is no better than the others, all is not lost. First, I'm spending a lot of time at the sewing machine getting downright comfy with it and with my new studio. Second, my skills are improving once again. The tote bags I made first came out "loving hands at home" quality, but so far the aprons are looking pretty good. I have fleece baby jackets on tap, Christmas stockings from last year, and then any time left over is for fun with little purses. That's what I've wanted to do all along but I was trying to be practical. So now comes the age-old question, "how much do I charge?" Last time I checked the formula was something like twice the cost of materials, what you want to charge for your time, and then what you think the market will bear. People here keep telling me people are willing to pay only "Walmart prices." Stay tuned! I checked prices online for starters...

Bird note: It took a week of intensive TLC but my little boy Stashi is back to being his old self. Thank goodness for helpful hints online--they told me birds with concussions can't handle the light so I kept him quiet and in the dark and a week later he seems back to normal. He's not singing quite as much as he used to but I'll give him time.

If word hasn't gotten to you yet, the Bernina fashion show is no more. They will put on one more show in Chicago but not in Long Beach. Karey Bresenhan is promising to find another showcase for wearable art, and for that I'm grateful. She's come through for us time and time again so I'm looking forward to hearing what's next. Bye till next time.

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