It's been a while since I posted about local craft shows & what I've been doing to get ready for them. I even was working on a big custom job for my awesome customer, Carlee in Winnipeg. So it's silly that I haven't kept anyone updated on what happened with these various projects.
1) Custom Orders
I've recently been getting more custom orders (which is AWEsome!), but has made it difficult to stay on top of everything. However, I've always thought custom orders were the jobs that helped me push my own limits to do things I never thought I would be able to do. :) The most recently custom order that I'm very proud of is a Cuddly Pyro from "Team Fortress 2" made for Carlee.
Pyro ended up being close to 14" tall and 8 inches "wide". I use soft acrylic yarns for his body, a combination on wool & eco felt for his accessories and little muslin bags filled with polybeads to weigh down his feet. I never thought I'd be able to get him to stand on his own, but he does if his feet are massaged into positioning themselves the right way. Isn't that just like a guy!? *laughs* He's not available for sale just yet, as this one was made especially for Carlee, but if there's interest, he should be available in the late Fall 2010.
2) Craft Shows!
My first craft show was Saturday the 26th of June with Market SF, held at The Blue Macaw in the lovely Mission in San Francisco. I did my very best to prepare for this show and learned a lot in the process. I'm hoping to do a blog post just based on "How To Prepare For a Craft Show" so I don't want to give the whole thing away here, but I will share a few things that happened to me:
- One of the first transactions was $100 bill. I didn't listen to books that said bring $50 in change. I brought $200 (since I've been working retail for a while, I know that's the minimum amount I would be comfortable with) and I'm glad I did!
- I got absolutely NO sleep before the show. I was making runs to the 24 HR Walgreens in Westlake to buy posterboard (to paint my show banners on at 6 AM), trail mix (for a quick snack that keeps on giving during the show) and Lo Carb Monster energy drinks (cos there was now way I was gonna pull an all-nighter without my blue lil friends). I would recommend.
- Having a variety of checklists is what saved me from forgetting something crucial to the presentation of the show. I had lists in my Idea book and lists from my favourite craft business books. You can NEVER have too many lists. If you miss one this somewhere, someone else's list may have it covered
- I had an effin' GREAT time! Jenn, Jon & Christina from Market SF were all AMAZING, to say the least. If anyone in San Francisco wanted to do an artists' market, THIS was the place to do it. Great artists, great food & fun times all around. I overheard one customer comment to another as they were shopping, "This show is great! You would think that out of a roomful of artists there would be a few duds, but every single one of these pieces is amazing!" Cheers to Jenn from Romey Designs and Christina from Finch Design SF for putting this show together; a roomful of talent, indeed!
- Traffic on Gay Pride weekend may have been slower than one would have hoped for, but everyone still worked their butts off to make it a successful event. We still had lots of cool individuals come on down (a few of my invites showed up, too!) and show their support. It was more ideal for me since it was my first show. :) My next show will be on Saturday 10th July from noon til 6 PM! Sunshine, $5 mimosas, DJs & radtastic crafts will be abound. So if you didn't get a chance to swing by last time, check out all the new artists that'll be featured THIS week HERE!
- Making friends & trading "Best Practises" tips was something else that was awesome. I learned from Andrew at APlushPlush that I ought to value my time a little more & work on adjusting my prices to reflect the amount of time & effort that goes into my art. He's got an AMAZING shop with fantastic original designs for plush toys. If you're interested in bright colours & squishy objects like I am, check him out!
It doesn't always go the way you think it would when you try to make new items for your shop. I know that I've come up with concepts and names, but when it came to designing prototypes, I was dismayed with the results. Whether it was something the planning stages that went wrong or simply not enough inspiration, there seemed to be something stopping me from making new items.
It's coming to that point again in my career with nerdJERK. I recently applied to be part of the Etsy Plush team and was rejected because I hadn't developed my original work enough yet. They urged me to continue with what I was doing and reapply with my own designs when I was ready.
Well, I like to cater to the geek crowd. I like coming up with designs based on a picture that someone gives me. But it's hard to just do one, two or even three things when I've got a LOT of things I want to do.
So we'll see if those cute Moleskine notebooks start popping up on my virtual shelves or the silly Mr. Sourpuss makes an appearance. I've gotten feedback that people would buy my things no matter what (cos not all peeps are into video games) but I don't even know what I'd create yet.
Any ideas as to what kind of cool amigurumi toys you'd like to see? Are there certain things that aren't video game based that you would still be into geeking out about?