I was talking to a vendor that I had not yet had the opportunity to meet at a show this past weekend. She is a jeweler and I’ve always been fascinated with the process of making jewelry – particularly rings. I wonder how they get a seamless joint in a ring like that.
I was admiring some rings that she has. They were simple, yet elegant and a popular item in her booth. She was telling me how she gets bored making the same thing over and over and wants to work on something more exciting and creative.
I think we all have that problem. We make something that is popular so we have to make it over and over. After a while it becomes repetitive to make but we want to show our creativity and make something more elegant or elaborate. This means that we have to charge more for the more elegant item since it took longer to make which means that it won’t sell as quickly. It’s a trap!
In a way, we become victims of our own success. We find ourselves back in a rut of “working for the man” and find out that “the man” is actually us in this case.
When this happens, what I have found works best is to set aside one day a week to work on the new stuff. I design and make something new – generally on Monday – and try to introduce one or two of these new things to a future market. Some of these things are a total bust that doesn’t get any attention, while others help me to fill out my inventory to fill my shelves at a market.
Over time, I can figure out what will be popular and what won’t. The ironic thing is that something that may have been exciting to make and create becomes boring as it’s popularity and demand increases. It’s a catch-22. We get bored making the same old stuff, but it is what sells. If it didn’t sell, we wouldn’t have to make it.
Remember. Boring can be good. Boring is what sells and keeps you in business!
In the meantime, I may ask the jeweler to show me how she gets such seamless joints. Then again, if I did, the mystery would be gone.
See you at market!