Tuesday, March 17, 2009

the market, and a rant

Well, I have to say that I'm a little disappointed about my market stall on Sunday. I don't really understand what it is about people that makes them not appreciate your hardwork and feel you should be paid reasonably for it. To me it seems that we have become such a throw away society and are used to purchasing low quality, cheap items imported from countries where they are paid an absolute pittance for their hardwork, that we no longer are able to recognise the value of people's creativity and craftsmanship.

I don't know if it was just the wrong venue for me, or if people just really don't have the money to spend. I found everyone to be friendly, and seemed to love my products, but when they saw what I was asking for them, they turned and walked away. Only one person commented on just how much work she could see had gone into some of my things.

It can be very disheartening. And also a little humiliating. For those of you that have very successful market stalls, could you share some advice? I would love to hear your tips on a successful stall.

I hope everyones weekend was a little better than mine!


bubbachenille said...

Oh you poor thing, I too have been there in the beginning and eventually all will be good, That's not to say all markets are going to be financially great, everyone has there ups and down days, go to a different market, see what happens. If the same thing happens then look at your prices, but dont drop them after just one market. We made up these flyers to hand out, it gets people thinking about handmade. Hope you have better fortune nextime.


Why buy handmade?

Buying Handmade makes for better gift-giving.
The giver of a handmade gift has avoided the parking lots and long lines of the big chain stores in favour of something more meaningful. If the giver has purchased the gift, s/he feels the satisfaction of supporting an artist or crafter directly. The recipient of the handmade gift receives something that is one-of-a-kind, and made with care and attention that can be seen and touched. It is the result of skill and craftsmanship that is absent in the world of large-scale manufacturing.

Buying handmade is better for people.
The ascendancy of chain store culture and global manufacturing has left us dressing, furnishing, and decorating alike. We are encouraged to be consumers, not producers, of our own culture. Our ties to the local and human sources of our goods have been lost. Buying handmade helps us reconnect.

Buying handmade is better for the environment.
The accumulating environmental effects of mass production are a major cause of global warming and the poisoning of our air, water and soil.
Every item you make or purchase from a small-scale independent artist or crafter strikes a small blow to the forces of mass production.

Sienna Starfish said...

I dont have any suggestions I just want to let you know I empathise with you!

I think your things are lovely, and agree with your comment about people perhaps not realising the time and cost of real craft-personship. In our mass produced society I think people are used to buying low quality throw away items too. I would rather have something vintage and gorgeous that will last for many years to come but cost me a little more and was made with love than rubbish any day!

I think there are many people like me out there - perhaps they just werent at that market on the weekend.

Try again. I love the idea of pointing out the benefits of handmade with a sign. Thats really powerful.

Selina said...

Thanks for the good ideas. I really like the idea of a sign, that could be quite effective. Thanks for the handmade love!!!

Jodie said...

Markets can be hard. I guess it would be a good idea to have some things at a variety of prices...so when they love somthing but can't afford it they can buy something smaller. Then when they get it home and see how well made and beautiful it is , they may come back for the larger items.
Also , the first one is hard, people want to check you out and make sure your sticking around, people will come back .
I hope the next one is an outstanding success.

Gillian said...

Hi Selina,
I find that markets are hit and miss so you have to be persistent. Some veteran market go-ers gave me a tip re pricing - whatever it costs to make x 3. I don't really factor in the time that goes into making it because it doesn't feel like work to me! Also, if you find that people are picking things up and looking at them but then putting them down and walking away it could be that your prices are too high. Altough I just checked your etsy shop and they look reasonable. Different markets have different crowds so you might need to try a few before you find the perfect one for you. Good luck!
XX Gillian

Christie said...

that is very upsetting

i was invited to do a market recently & now I think i will say no!