Closely followed by spoon rests.
Third runner up are (oddly specific )mugs with trees on them. Any kind of mug. Any kind of tree. People around here have been losing their minds for all three of these items lately.
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Posted by Mesi on 12 November 2014 - 03:03 AM
Posted by Mesi on 01 May 2014 - 01:40 PM
I've tried a LOT of mops and I find that the replaceable sponge mops are the best. They hold up well and clean out easily. The rope mop was a clay-caked disaster. I got the floor squeegee from Home Depot or Lowes. 18 inch squeegee head on like a mop handle.
Posted by Mesi on 28 April 2014 - 09:55 AM
1. What type of utility sink will be sufficient-will "plastic" hold up?
Mine's plastic and it holds up fine. I've got a trap in there as well to catch all the clay goobers.
3. About how much room should I leave around the kiln in a separate room for stacking, maintenance, etc.
18 inches I think is what most manufacturers recommend. Due to space constraints my kiln is in the same room as the studio itself, i just close the door and stay out when firing.
4. I'm building a 4x8 studio table. Any suggestion as to a material for the top? I am considering hardboard. But would a Formica-like product be better. I am concerned about moisture and warping.
hardboard is probably going to absorb water and deteriorate. I've got an ancient formica-top dining table right now, and its fabulously easy to clean. I took and covered 4x4 drywall sheets in canvas duck for when we're doing clay work (take them off and lean them against the wall when we're glazing so we can just wipe off the formica).
5. Cleaning floors: I know damp mopping is best but should I vacuum up the dust first with a shop vac? If not, wouldn't I just be pushing around mud even if I rinse frequently?
You'll regret shop vac-ing. Sooo much dust in the air. We throw water on the floor (concrete with epoxy over) and scrub with a mop, squeegie it into a puddle and soak up the puddle. Our studio gets FILTHY (My business partner says my carving has a "blast radius") and even at its worst 2 or 3 rinse and squeegie sessions get it sparkling.
6. I plan on painting the concrete floor with appropriate paint. Should I leave the kiln area unpainted?
Ours is painted and it's been fine.
Posted by Mesi on 20 May 2013 - 07:35 PM
Posted by Mesi on 10 May 2013 - 09:26 AM
Don't put all of any one price level out front put an assortment of items so people looking for inexpensive items can see something to interest them and someone looking for a special item can see something to draw them in you don't want anyone assuming you only have one type of item. As for standing out front that is a good way to engage people BUT you might scare away some people afraid of getting "grabbed" by you and made to feel like they have to purchase something. So be there but kind of look like you are busy but friendly rather than waiting to pounce. It's kind of hard to explain but you'll get the hang of being friendly but not intimidating or pushy as you do more shows.
I would also bring your table forward a bit and like others have said give yourself space to store packaging, bags, extra stock etc since a lot of shows don't allow you to go outside your 10x10 space. Im not sure on the width of your tables but you you might even consider a T-shaped layout with the table going up the center of the both thereby giving you 2 sides to display from and allowing people to see more ware up close and not having to reach over other pieces to see the ones further back on the table. I did art festivals for 15 years, not with pottery, high end fine art instead, and you learn to put yourself out there every time you set up your tent and you also learn not every venue is alike you will learn to read the crowd and know what type salesmanship will work with each kind.
Pricing is ALWAYS hard but don't under price your stuff either if people perceive it as too cheap they might think its not worth buying if they feel that you don't feel it's worth pricing higher. Not sure I am explaining that well. Basically when I started out many eons ago my lowest priced item was $20 sold okay but not great, raised my lowest price to $40 and suddenly people started paying attention to what now because of the price they perceived as worthy art. Pricing also will vary according to venue somewhat as well, something thought of as too expensive at a farmers market will be dirt cheap at a formal art festival so you kind of have to decide where and how you plan to sell and price accordingly so clients will get to know you, your product and your prices and what to expect if they see you at a variety of locations. Don't shock them by selling something for $10 one weekend and the next weekend asking $30 for the same item, that will shock and possibly insult them sending them away feeling like they can't trust the prices in your tent. You want to develop repeat buyers, especially locally that is where your money is at, someone that buys a small item the first time they see you but decides they like it so much that the next time they add to their collection another piece and then another and another and you'll have a following. I had people buy stuff every year at a festival they knew I would be at for 15 years. Another good idea is to have a sheet for people to put their email address down so as you do more you can send them an email letting them know where you will be. Depending on the show I would even have a line in the SIMPLE email about if they brought the email to the show with them they would get something like 10 percent off their purchase. Some venues don't allow "coupons" but I found it a good way to see if anyone out there was reading the emails and always got a goodly amount of them used when I offered them.
There's tons more but you have time to figure it out just be kind to yourself. Schlepping a ton of equipment around every weekend for 15 years can take a toll on your body. I had to stop festivals when I fractured my back and had 2 back surgeries to try and stabilize it, now can't lift, carry, stand all day etc. that was kind of a down note so I'll end with.... Have fun it's exciting to have people look at your art and want to talk to you about your work and to know your creations are going out into the world to live the life they were meant to.
Posted by Mesi on 06 May 2013 - 11:08 AM
Good for you! No need to apologize for the thread as summer is coming up and many will be heading off to their first shows and could use input.
Yes to opening up your entryway so people can wander in .... Yes to rotating your stock to discover best placement each week.
You being outside of the booth will also help with people coming in so buy a hat and sunblock! The only reason to be in there is to take payment and wrap things.
Posted by Mesi on 06 May 2013 - 09:43 AM
Posted by Mesi on 26 April 2013 - 08:48 AM
Posted by Mesi on 26 March 2013 - 08:15 AM
I have lots of pottery books but none of them really talk about the firing process in any detail so I got most of what I know from the manual with my kiln. I have been following this schedule for over 10 years and have never had a problem.
Posted by Mesi on 30 January 2013 - 02:47 PM
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