This year has been a hectic whirl wind of jewelry making and new shows. This is the first year that I have done independent shows and I loved it! It was interesting to see people come to my booth and oooohh an aaaaah over pieces that I've spent hours and hours making! It was good to get out there to a wider audience and see that yep, these pieces catch attention and inspire people.
This new year of out there in the world of jewelry makers and competing for customers and dollars in hard economic times and still succeeding has also taught me a few things. Give quality and art at reasonable prices. Striking a balance between material costs, labor costs, transportation, etc. cost and matching that with a fair price and a price that customers can afford is a difficult balancing act. As artists we have to get a reasonable return. Yet, we have to offer items to customers at various price points in order to make a living from our artistic skills. Setting up at the shows and talking with customers, seeing what they like and don't, etc. was a huge help in marketing and creative inspiration.
This too, was a new exciting piece of the artist as seller experience! It was good to see that my particularbent on jewelry excited people. It was also excellent to expand my own realms. For example, I LOVE LOVE LOVE making large pieces. Therefore most of my creations followed that line. I also liked to make sets. However, I discovered that the majority of my sales were earrings or bracelets. This helped to push me to make more bracelet designs which I did not do so much of.
Over all this whole year of jewelry making and setting up my official business has been a wonderful learning experience! I can't wait to see what 2009 holds!!!
I want to say a tremendous thank you to all of the people who purchased pieces from me and to all of those who helped with marketing- my mother and here excellent display abilities and my sister and her excellent saleswoman abilities!