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Member Since 08 Apr 2010
Online Last Active Today, 11:32 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Wholesale Marketing Materials

17 January 2017 - 08:35 PM

Sounds like six of one, or half a dozen of the other. Getting 50 out per day, while still getting studio hours in every day, or getting the entire mailing done in one or two working days, seems like the same result. Whether your orders come in all at once, or spaced out, doesn't really affect how you schedule your responses or deliveries. So I'd say whatever fits your own needs is the right choice.

In Topic: Wholesale-Know Your Limits

16 January 2017 - 10:48 AM

I Googled ... pottery bisqueware wholesale shows ... and names popped up of places you could probably call to ask what show they go to buy supplies.
It would not be a typical wholesale craft show as that is all finished ceramics ... you are looking at a commercial level wholesale show where you would be competing with factories. A shop near me gets their bisque from France, Italy and China ... so you could also call your local paint your own pottery store to see how they get their supplies.
Unless you can produce huge volumes of bisque ware you might be better off establishing relationships with local stores whose customers might appreciate working with handmade items.

I thought maybe someone on this form post might have known of some shows. It seems kind of like a close nit community. I say this because I make pipes and everyone knows which shows to go to but this industry is different. I make ceramic pipes that it seems few make and I would care to start testing out the waters of selling bisq fired pipes instead of only finished ones. But I do understand production and factories pumping out 10s of thousands of items. I am only at thousands right now but that is still pretty good for a one man operation. So maybe ill do some calling maybe marc or someone knows of some shows, we shall see. Thanks so far though


I think you may be breaking ground on a brand new industry, so I don't know of any channels in the ceramics or craft world yet. I would pose this question to the rapidly-growing legal pot industry as well. I'm sure they have forums too. They might have some better suggestions. Also they probably can provide better guidance on the legal aspects of selling pipes. I think you'll need to target locations where this is legal. A large trade show doesn't quite make sense, because there are still many states where these are not legal.

In Topic: Wholesale-Know Your Limits

12 January 2017 - 10:34 AM

You don't have to turn down any orders, just give out realistic delivery dates. My approach was to have every other Monday as a "delivery date." I had max dollar amount that I felt I could produce in two weeks. As I received orders, they were assigned a delivery date. When delivery dates became full, they were no longer available. Buyers are fine with you telling them their delivery will be in 3 months, or even 6 months. If that is your demand level, buyers understand.

In Topic: Which Model Brent Wheel For School Use?

12 January 2017 - 10:01 AM

The one brand I wouldn't recommend for a classroom is Pacifica. In the place where I used to teach, we had Brents and Pacificas. The problem with Pacificas is that the method for attaching the splashpan involved some instruction and was not intuitive. I frequently saw students trying to manhandle the splashpan into place. And therefore we experienced lots of cracked splashpans. In classes meant for newcomers, a wheel without a splashpan is unusable.

On the other hand, I never saw anyone have any trouble attaching the splashpan on a Brent.

In Topic: Wholesale-Know Your Limits

12 January 2017 - 09:23 AM

I know at least four who are not potting anymore because they took all kinds of orders without serious planning and basically started to hate what they were doing.

I've seen this happen to a few people as well. Not as dramatically as Mark's example, the burnout took years instead of months. Very sad to see someone grow to hate their own work.

I was once on the brink of this situation myself. This is when I had that invaluable conversation with my accountant about employees. He advised me not to let my business grow in an out-of-control fashion. Instead, grow in a selective way, keeping in mind what I can handle by myself. He said I would be happier and richer in the long run. He was right, I am much happier with the current state of things, and my business is far more profitable now. I gather he has seen this happen to a lot of his clients.