Jump to content


Photo

I Know This Has Been Asked Before, But Maybe More Specific Answers? - Shows


  • Please log in to reply
24 replies to this topic

#1 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 07 April 2014 - 08:30 AM

I have 2 juried craft shows in september (my first ones)  they are known to be HUGE but only 1 day events.  I fire about 1 load (7cf kiln) per month. How many loads would you bring to a show like that? I am nervous about running out and having nothing for the second show. The shows are 1 week apart so I will not have time to stock up in between.  

 

 

 

 


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#2 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 830 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 07 April 2014 - 08:40 AM

Depending on how tightly you pack your kiln, I think 3 to 5 kiln loads should do. If these are your first shows, the more the better. It'll be some time before you get a good sense of your actual inventory needs, so just bring as much as you can for now.

I'm getting ready for three shows in May, on consecutive weekends. 6 days of selling total. My inventory for these shows was ten 7ft3 glaze firings.


Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#3 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 07 April 2014 - 08:47 AM

Thanks Mea! I do a small amount of stacking, but mostly side by side because I want to be able to glaze and fire most of without too many leftovers waiting for another glaze fire.  I have 1 level usually of 3-4 large bowls and some vases, the rest is mid sized stuff like breakfast bowls, small mugs, oil warmers, etc.  


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#4 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 07 April 2014 - 08:50 AM

the only thing that could cause the show to sell out faster is that my mugs are more in the 15-$18 dollar quality range.  My prices are slightly lower than seasoned potters because I have only been throwing for 2 years/  


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#5 JBaymore

JBaymore

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 2,962 posts
  • LocationWilton, NH USA

Posted 07 April 2014 - 08:56 AM

One of the "milestones" in really developing as a "selling" artist is getting a decent amount of backstock ahead.  So that at any given time you are not making for the next coming show / opportunity......... but are well ahead of that curve.  This of course requires the ability to invest the money in materials and time necessary to get that work accumulated... and also the storage area to backstock the pieces.

 

So rather than think about precisely how much to get together for those 2 shows... just start producing (today! ;)) as much as you can between now and then.  And keep producing even if you think you have "enough".  Get ahead of the demand... and try to stay there.

 

Then when you get an opportunity... you can jump on it....... instead of worrying about producing new work for the show / sale / client / etc. .

 

best,

 

.................john


John Baymore
Immediate Past President; Potters Council
Professor of Ceramics; New Hampshire Insitute of Art

http://www.JohnBaymore.com

#6 GEP

GEP

    Moderator / full time potter ^6 stoneware

  • Moderators
  • 830 posts
  • LocationSilver Spring, MD

Posted 07 April 2014 - 09:45 AM

the only thing that could cause the show to sell out faster is that my mugs are more in the 15-$18 dollar quality range.  My prices are slightly lower than seasoned potters because I have only been throwing for 2 years/


People will not choose your mugs over another potter's mugs because yours are cheaper. But they might if yours are a better value. Also, they will choose your mugs if they are more appealing than the next potter's, or if you are more appealing than the next potter.


Mea Rhee
Good Elephant Pottery
http://www.goodelephant.com

#7 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,637 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 07 April 2014 - 09:47 AM

It all depends on what type of work you are selling. If you're making functional pots that sell for reasonable prices, then you're going to need more pots than someone who sells decorative, higher priced items. Have enough to fill your booth, plus whatever else you can comfortably haul. I can fit $6000 worth of pots in my booth, but I rarely have overstock of anything other than very small items that sell quickly.


Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#8 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,851 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 07 April 2014 - 09:52 AM

One thing I have noticed is when you take a lot extra it never goes bad and makes the next show easier as well as never running low on forms.

This always makes for more sales. 

I'll use my spoonrests as an example-when the selection is stuffed folks plow thru them and buy in multiples. When the display is picked over and  sales slow on them. This can be said about all forms as well. Unless your work is high end one og a kind -then the limited forms are a different deal.

I'm with John just make as much as you can and do not over think this.

Mark


Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com

#9 neilestrick

neilestrick

    Neil Estrick

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,637 posts
  • LocationGrayslake, IL

Posted 07 April 2014 - 09:53 AM

 

the only thing that could cause the show to sell out faster is that my mugs are more in the 15-$18 dollar quality range.  My prices are slightly lower than seasoned potters because I have only been throwing for 2 years/


People will not choose your mugs over another potter's mugs because yours are cheaper. But they might if yours are a better value. Also, they will choose your mugs if they are more appealing than the next potter's, or if you are more appealing than the next potter.

 

 

Percieved Value! If your pots are a lot cheaper, people will think they are not as good. You have to price your work to be comparable to everyone else's. They can be on the lower end of the spectrum, but not a lot less expensive. No mug at an art fair should ever be under $16 at a small local fair, $20 at a big fair. Anything less is doing a disservice to you and the artist community. I once convinced a friend of mine to increase her mug prices from $12 to $18 and she sold twice as many. I did the same for another potter friend and he found he could increase his prices 30%, make fewer pieces and bring in more money. I convinced a photographer friend to increase her prices by at least 25%, which increased her sales by 25% as well.

 

I have my first show of the year in 3 weeks and have a total of 6 pots in inventory right now. Time to fill the booth!


Neil Estrick
Kiln Repair Tech
L&L Distributor
Owner, Neil Estrick Gallery, LLC
www.neilestrickgallery.com

neil@neilestrickgallery.com

#10 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,851 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 07 April 2014 - 10:07 AM

I will add I just finished my best spring show ever last weekend in March-I had been doing this show for over 20 years twice a year. This spring was packed with polar vortex avoiders (cold winter retreaters) Many from your state (show was in Az)

My pots are not as cheap as some and not as high as others-I really have no idea really on that exactly as thats what my customers say-I stopped looking at others prices long ago.

I did raise all mug prices a few bucks and heard not one comment-I had 665 customers spread over 3 days. The show was on fire at least fo me.

Now got home after a two day drive and went to wheel like a zombie and threw more pots as I have a show when I reurn for my mid pacific workshops and salt kiln conversion trip next month. Just stay focused and make work fly off the wheel.

Mark


Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com

#11 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 07 April 2014 - 10:26 AM

I wasn't thinking of my pricing as under cutting myself or the next guy.  That's the last thing I want to do. I crochet and get upset when I see people price work too low when I know took them months to complete. 


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#12 schmism

schmism

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 141 posts
  • LocationPeoria IL

Posted 08 April 2014 - 01:01 PM

Perhaps think of it in terms of dollars worth of inventory and what can you expect to sell at any given show.

 

My dad makes hand made wooden spoons, been doing it for years.  He does several smaller shows but really makes product all year long for one show in late sept.   its a 3 day show and he sells ~$5000.   at an avg of $20/spoon he has to have over 250 pieces.  Reality is he sells out of some items and others are picked thin.

 

Perhaps think of it in terms of dollars of product you expect to sell.   What if you expect to sell $2000 of goods?  If you are going to sell $8 spoon holders,  better bring about 300 of them vs those $400 bowls which you may need only 5 of.



#13 clay lover

clay lover

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 867 posts
  • LocationSoutheast

Posted 09 April 2014 - 06:54 AM

Another thought, you want your booth to look well stocked in the afternoon of the 2nd show, not picked over.   I want to finish a show with it looking good, even if lots of inventory has been sold.  I take double what I think I will sell and usually sell half of whatever is in the booth.  

What John says, don't think in terms of these 2 days, just make inventory as if it was your daily job.  Then you are not only prepared for these 2 shows, but can take advantage of other opportunities before fall.

You don't  want to turn down sales this spring and summer because you are 'saving inventory ' for the fall, that does not make good business sense.



#14 Chantay

Chantay

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 210 posts
  • LocationVirginia, USA

Posted 09 April 2014 - 09:18 PM

Great advice everyone.


- chantay

#15 Babs

Babs

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 995 posts

Posted 10 April 2014 - 08:06 PM

Are mugs the only item you don't get the "what would you use this for?" I find mugs sell less well than the multi use bowl, with the advantage of not having to attach a handle, even though I love making and using mugs.

#16 clay lover

clay lover

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 867 posts
  • LocationSoutheast

Posted 11 April 2014 - 07:11 AM

I can't sell a small bowl, no matter the price, but if I put a handle on it, it will sell for double the bowl price.  ?????



#17 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 13 April 2014 - 07:53 AM

I actually made a piece, a small bowl with a low and wide handle for the thumb.  It's for holding the bowl in your palm.  After it cools out of the kiln I will know if it's an item worthy of repeating. 


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#18 Stephen

Stephen

    novice

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 239 posts

Posted 27 June 2014 - 01:38 PM

so Rebekah, how's it going getting ready for these shows? Have you been able to fire the first 3-4 kiln loads in preparation mentioned here?



#19 Rebekah Krieger

Rebekah Krieger

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 551 posts
  • LocationWisconsin

Posted 03 July 2014 - 06:30 PM

Hi stephen- The one show I ended up not getting in to. The letter stated that there were  too many people with the same kind of craft as I did. (but of course if mine was great, mine wouldn't be the one getting booted so it sucks, big ego hit for sure!)  The other one I will have plenty to sell. I Have it at the end of september and have enough to fill the kiln again. (it's been 2-3 kiln loads but I don't like some stuff enough to sell it)


Learning On my Kick wheel with my vintage Paragon (from the late 1960's)

#20 Mark C.

Mark C.

    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,851 posts
  • LocationNear Arcata Ca-redwood rain forest

Posted 03 July 2014 - 06:49 PM

The letter stated that there were  too many people with the same kind of craft as I did. (but of course if mine was great, mine wouldn't be the one getting booted so it sucks, big ego hit for sure!) 

 

Get used to rejection-it may have nothing to do with your stuff-sometime its just who is in that jury that day and what they like -other times its politics and sometimes it just the luck of the draw.

Years ago when I was trying to get a foot in the door-I used to apply to 20 shows hoping to get into 10.

Now the one giving the rejections is me as I downsize.

Mark


Mark Cortright
www.liscomhillpottery.com




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users