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Member Since 21 May 2011
Offline Last Active Feb 25 2017 08:30 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Business Advice Aka How Not To Eat Cat Food For Dinner

25 February 2017 - 08:30 AM

nancy, thank you for bringing this up again.  i had not finished the entire thing when it first appeared and today i read it all.
can you tell us what you have been doing lately?  the pet urn idea seems like a winner, something you like to do and a business that can work anywhere you might choose to live.  there are pets everywhere and veterinarians all over so the possibilities seem unlimited.
i had an idea last fall but did nothing about it because of timing and fear of success.  there are many specialty magazines catering to people who do all kinds of things.  one i checked out was for chicken owners.  the potential market was the 70,000 subscribers to the magazine.  the item would be a gift with a chicken featured somehow.  if i remember correctly, the percentage of responses to a random advertising mailing was considered good if 1% responded.  so i thought if i could reach that 1% with an advertisement cost of $175 for december, i might sell 700 small items that way.  it was too scary for right then so i filed it away with the rest of the get-rich-quick schemes stored way back in my head.
what if you took out an ad for your urns in a pet magazine after building up a pile of stock to supply the buyers?  there are tons of them, dogs only, cats only, etc.

Good morning,
I am kind of in the same boat as you are - i have a crazy busy vet near me they said I could hang a flyer with my urns, or I could do a Facebook ad like someone here told me, but what if I get a ton or orders? I still have trouble throwing over 3 pounds, plus I still work full time. So i haven't done anything but add a shopify stand along site to etsy.
I am tying my work into my spiritual practice, which is shamanism. Lots of power animals, etc. i have been handbuilding a lot more, took an animal sculpture lesson. I just never have time. It is the one thing i wish i had more of. I did apply to, and got into, a pretty big show near me, so i have to make stuff for that. I'm making Keepsake Urns, colorful, for all occasions: births, marriage, graduations, deaths. I can sell them at a show as is. I have been making medicine bags to go with some of these urns if they want it. So I am slowly puloing all of my passions together.
The chicken idea is good. Find a niche. My friends rescues ferrets, and tells me she know hundreds of ferret owners who would love a handbuilt ferret bath house! I just can't even explore that right now. Another woman on etsy wanted to give up her niche of making discs for canning - she did 3 or 4 thiusand a year in just that. I still make some jewelry, too, so I am working on incorporating that into the pottery, too.
The amazing thing is that I was really liking silversmithing more, but I fell back in love with clay - i think it is the connection with Mother Earth that gets me. I just have to be able to center again. :)
I have you phone number still - would you still want to talk!


In Topic: Business Advice Aka How Not To Eat Cat Food For Dinner

24 February 2017 - 07:28 AM

Hi all,
Just rereading this thread and wanted to comment and thank you all for the amazing advice found here!! You are all very generous!

In Topic: Do You Have Seasonal Lines?

12 February 2017 - 11:34 AM

Closest I come is Summer Chawan and Winter Chawan.  And ones good for either.  And I make any/all of them at any time of the year .


As an artist, I've always taken the approach of "Make what you love... and find the market for it."





That is interesting that you say that about making what you love. In this video I've watched several times, the woman said that making just what we love is a surefire way to fail. And I do get that in a way. But I have been making urn after urn, and it made me not want to do pottery at all any more. So I think there needs to be a happy medium, maybe? Having said that, I could be 100% wrong, cause I know nothing about making a living from pottery!! 


In Topic: Do You Have Seasonal Lines?

09 February 2017 - 11:09 AM

Might I ask where you did the research that said you, a potter, needed seasonal lines?

It's a handmade product line video and blog. Setting up product lines and marketing them.


It's not just for potters. It's for any handmade products. I'm asking, because I'm not sure if all the seasons would apply. I can see Winter (Christmas) and Summer/Spring, but like I said, I am flummoxed over 4 seasons! 

In Topic: You Break It You Buy It Rule?

09 February 2017 - 10:53 AM


Sorry. This is the gallery's problem, not yours. You have entrusted your pieces to them. They should pay you the same net amount they would have paid you if the pieces had sold.
They can charge or not charge the customer. That has nothing to do with you.
If I were the gallery, I'd just eat the cost, pay you and call it a cost of doing business. How much are we talking about? $100 -$200?

I agree not your problem, that said be careful how you handle as this could make or break your relationship with the gallery and piss off a future customer.. IMHO I would just eat the cost all the way around, that way the Gallery owner wont hold it against you ( not that its your fault)  and the customer will most likely still shop at that gallery and potentially buy more then they normally would because they want to support the gallery.  Lets not forget word of mouth of the customer telling other potential customer not to shop their because they will have to pay is an accident happens.  my2c


I agree with this. I don't yet make my living doing this, but sometimes good will is a lot more than $100 or even a couple of hundred dollars. I'd go for the good will. YOu will surprise and delight the gallery owner and the customer. They will make it up to you.