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Making A Good Living With Clay Work At Shows

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#21 Wyndham


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Posted 12 October 2013 - 09:51 AM

I do about 3 shows a year, mainly because of cost, distance and getting older slower and pots weigh more than they used to. All that aside, here in Seagrove NC we have a fall pottery show and functional pottery sells at a very reasonable price. My coffee mugs are $16.95 and soup mugs $18.95. My work is mid range prices. You can get a $10 coffee mug from many different potters.

When you consider the cost of a show($500 for 2 days), downtime from the shop, travel, cost of making firing and all the other factors of life, a comparative cost of a mug vs the monthly payments on a home in any large city($250k) a mug should sell for $50 or more.

So it goes back to  volume vs eclectic at higher price per lb. Both positions are flawed but there's not many choices. If you have an affluent market, you sell to it and lose the low end. If you are fighting for the low end, do what you can.


#22 JBaymore



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Posted 12 October 2013 - 10:39 AM

.......................pots weigh more than they used to.

I have noticed this fact too, Wyndham.  I've also noticed that when I get on the scale, I weigh more than I used to.  I have come to the conclusion that the Eatth's mass is slowly increasing and so the affect of gravity is also increaseing. ;)

John Baymore
Adjunct Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

Former Guest Professor, Wuxi Institute of Arts and Science, Yixing, China

Former President and Past President; Potters Council



#23 Wyndham


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Posted 14 October 2013 - 09:01 AM

John, we've been watching Too Much "Dr. Who", or not enough.  :P 


#24 Rebekah Krieger

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 08:24 PM

:lol:   that is funny!  


First of all Mark- Your display is gorgeous!!  I think in selling - don't get too creative with the display. Whatever will be a good contrast to display not compete with the work.  I have a background in sales, I love this topic.  


I have seen that if you have a piece that isn't selling, put that up at eye level and it will go.  Everyone can relate to a mug, and everyone relates to the idea of having a "special mug".  I have been obsessed with michael Imes Pinch Pot Teacups lately and hope my husband gets me one for my birthday.   http://www.pinterest...80577741419722/   <3  



I think its important not to lower your prices to be competitive.  

~ Namaste ~


Home studio potter 


Shanel Pottery 






"To me the greatest thing is to live beauty in our daily life and to crowd every moment with things of beauty.  It is then, and then only that  the art of the people as a whole is endowed with it's richest significance.  For it's products are those made by great a many craftsmen for the mass of the people, and the moment this art declines the life of the nation  is removed far away from beauty.  So long as beauty abides in only in a few articles created by a few geniuses, the kingdom of beauty is nowhere near realization."                                                                                 - Bernard Leach 

#25 TJR


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Posted 15 October 2013 - 01:29 PM


I had my mugs priced at $15.00 for years and years. I raised the price to $18.00 each. People still buy them.

I also stopped doing those rinky-dink one day craft fairs. I sell out of my studio twice a year. Two day sales. I am in a group of 10 artists. We hire my sons to put mailers in all the mail boxes in the area.[500, I think].

I don't have to pack for shows. Customers come to me.


I also am getting a bit heavier. I attribute it to global warming.


#26 nancylee


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Posted 07 December 2013 - 08:17 AM


As a newer potter, in a rural area, would you see the benefit of doing a few shows a year? If I put flyers out and had a show, I would probably get about 3 people to my property, two who want to see the chickens!! I am trying to come up with a business plan that includes about 5 shows a year. No, I am not looking forward to the carrying. I will probably have to hire a cabana boy to help, if I can. But I think the exposure is good!

Northern Woods Pottery

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