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Member Since 08 Apr 2010
Online Last Active Today, 11:13 AM

#110483 Skutt or L&L?

Posted by GEP on 24 July 2016 - 01:40 PM

If you think a speech impediment was relevant to your customer service experience, then I find it hard to take your opinion seriously.

#110404 Not So Messy Clay For Beginners?

Posted by GEP on 21 July 2016 - 11:02 AM

When I taught pottery classes, we had three clays available for the students. No matter what clay they used, some potters got really messy and some stayed really neat. I think it has more to do with the potter rather than the clay.


I also think that beginners should use a lot of water. It helps to overcome a lot of hurdles during the beginner phase. It also makes you much messier. As you gain skill, you should use less and less water, which gives you more control. 


When I throw, one of my habitual movements is regularly scrape my hands clean on my splashpan or bucket. And to regularly clean off my batt of excess clay or slop. 

#110365 Chip Card Readers. How Do You Like Yours So Far?

Posted by GEP on 20 July 2016 - 09:31 AM

When everything went chip, the credit card transactions all slowed down too, and the transaction times are nearly identical.

This is true, when I use a chip card in a retailer like Target or Home Depot, it takes longer to process than a swiped card. Maybe I shouldn't blame that on Square.

#110247 How To Mark Your Prices.....

Posted by GEP on 18 July 2016 - 09:27 AM

I did a show this past weekend, using the Sharpie/dry-erase pen combination. It was awesome! I did not have to fix a single price marker, even though customers touched them as much as usual. The few times when I needed to erase and change a price, it was a piece of cake. I am really excited to have this problem solved. Thanks again Giselle!

#110036 Do You Wrap Your Tools To Make Them More Comfortable To Hold?

Posted by GEP on 12 July 2016 - 03:37 PM

Pipe insulation and rubber bands. I have not had any hand pain since. See a photo on my blog:


#109833 How To Mark Your Prices.....

Posted by GEP on 07 July 2016 - 06:38 PM

What I read is that all flammable liquids shouldn't be stored in a hot car. Sometimes my gear stays packed in my car for months.
I might try a combination of Mark's approach and Giselle's idea. Small, clear, removable labels, and a Sharpie. When I need to change the price, I can peel the sticker off.

Coloring over it with a dry erase marker will work too and then you don't have to worry about the flammable liquid. That might work better for you. The reason I discovered how to get rid of Sharpie marks is that I drew out a schedule with permanent marker on a white board thinking I was so clever but then discovered that the dry erase marker made it come right back off!

Holy cow, Giselle ... this works! It's a little time consuming, but I think that will be offset by all the time I save not fixing the erased prices. I will try it at my next show and see how it goes.

#109803 How To Mark Your Prices.....

Posted by GEP on 07 July 2016 - 08:54 AM

Mea, try writing it with a Sharpie instead of dry erase. You can get it back off with nail polish remover, alcohol, or even a dry erase marker but I would definitely try it out on one first before you do all of them. :)

I just tried this and it worked! Could not smudge it with my fingers, but it came right off with nail polish remover. I'm a little wary about travelling with nail polish remover in my gear, but I will try it for my next show and see if it creates any problems. This is exactly the type of solution I was seeking ... something that can withstand customer fingers, but still can be changed by me any time.

Thanks Giselle!!

EDIT: After doing some reading about the potential hazard of keeping nail polish remover in a hot car, now I don't want to risk it. But again, this was the type of idea I'm looking for. Permanent for everybody except the person with a "key" to change it.

#109739 How To Mark Your Prices.....

Posted by GEP on 05 July 2016 - 12:06 PM

I use little ceramic price markers, in two sizes. The small ones are for individual items, with the price written on with a dry-erase pen. The larger ones are for my "staple" items, the things that are displayed in bunches. The item name and price are applied with clear mailing labels.

I made these so they wouldn't move in a windy situation, and it saves time compared to pricing all of the staple items individually. I get lots of compliments on the price markers from customers. So much that I sometimes want to say "but what do you think about the pots?"

The only downside is that the dry-erase pen frequently gets smudged or erased by customers, so I have to keep an eye on them and fix them on a regular basis.

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#109497 Online Marketplaces Vs Your Own Website

Posted by GEP on 27 June 2016 - 05:07 PM

Marcia, yes a link to an informational website is totally fine, as long as it is not accompanied by a "buy this" message. A link to an online store is automatically considered a "buy this" message. And it is OK to have a link to one's website and online store within your PROFILE and SIGNATURE, just not within the body of a post or comment. 

#109481 Online Marketplaces Vs Your Own Website

Posted by GEP on 27 June 2016 - 10:06 AM



Just a reminder, links to one's online store are not allowed in the body of a post. I know it's a fine line, when we are discussing anything related to online stores, but we need to draw a line somewhere in order to maintain our "no advertising" policy. We can have meaningful discussions without having these links. You are also welcome to send a PM to eloiseceramics asking for a link.


This FAQ thread explains the policy in detail:


#108791 How Do You Price Your Work?

Posted by GEP on 15 June 2016 - 02:08 PM

I wrote a blog post about my approach to pricing:


The short answer is "success of the individual piece."

Nice pots!

#108640 Website Development, What Do You Use?

Posted by GEP on 13 June 2016 - 04:56 PM

I just had a warning from Safari when I tried to go to your website. I can bypass it. I like the distress mug.

I'm using Chrome on a Mac and get a warning for Callie's site too. Tried it a few times and got the same warning.
I just tested and I also get this alert.

Callie, I think I figured out the glitch. Your website loads with no error with the prefix "http". The error happens when one clicks the url in your signature, which has the prefix "https". "https" is for SSL secure servers, which I don't think weebly uses. Everyone's browsers are responding "hey that's not a secure server." So just edit the "s" out of your url.

#108442 Startup Cost

Posted by GEP on 08 June 2016 - 06:40 PM

Somebody gave me a free kiln, which I took as a sign that it was time for my own studio. As I recall, I gave myself a $5000 budget for everything else, and I spent most of it. I bought a wheel, slab roller, kiln vent, kiln furniture, tables, lots of shelving. I spent a lot on an electrician to install the kiln circuit, and punch a hole in my wall for the vent. I stocked up on glazemaking tools and raw materials.

Down the road I gave away the small free kiln and bought a larger one. Then later I bought a used pug mill, a second kiln, and a second wheel.

I did this in the basement of my house, so the space was essentially free. If you don't have available space at home, you need to factor in rent too.

Also, when I did this I still had another full-time occupation, so I didn't need the pottery studio to provide a livable income. If your pottery studio is your only income, you also need to have enough capital to live off until your pottery starts to make money, which could take a few years.

#108405 Qotw: What Would Be The Title Of A Clay Book Of Yours?

Posted by GEP on 08 June 2016 - 12:08 PM

The Joy of Working in the Clothes You Slept In

subtitle: Self-Employment for Artists

#108276 Graybeards 1St Sale

Posted by GEP on 06 June 2016 - 06:35 PM

Did you know that seasoned festival artists will have zero days sometimes, even at fancy shows? It's true! You have nothing to be embarrassed about. You had the courage to take this big step. I agree with Joseph that you should sit down and make notes about everything you learned. This will make a big difference for next time. But before you do that, put your feet up and have a drink!