Monday, December 28, 2015

Minor Reflections

Y'all know I love the week between Christmas and New Year's. It feel like a time out of time, a chance to catch your breath. I have taken to calling it the Week of Reflection, and I use it to consider the events of the past year, and how I hope the New Year will be different, or the same.

This year, though, I don't have a lot to reflect about. I plan to continue the pots-by-the-pound pricing, because that's working, so why mess with it? My revised time distribution has me spending the majority of my time on my two highest priority tasks: making pots, and seeking accounts which can support higher prices. I am still selling pretty much everything I can make, and while I am doing far better than past years, I'm still struggling by most people's standards. So I need to either A) make more stuff or B) get more money for the stuff I make. I've made a lot of progress, so I think the plan for 2016 is to stay the course.

Looming large in the road ahead, of course, is NCECA, and my process-room demo! Funnily enough, that will be a bunch of time spent that is neither making pots or seeking accounts. Don't care, doing it anyway.

I am also opening an Etsy shop for my soaps & other body products. I don't make quite enough of them to sell wholesale or consignment, but I make more than I can use, or sell within my circle of acquaintances. I haven't loved Etsy in the past (well, I have loved shopping Etsy! Just not being an Etsy seller) but I think soap will be a little different; it's not like each bar needs its own listing. I can create a single listing for each variety and they just keep renewing it when I make a new batch.

I've been meaning, also, to create a quarterly e-newsletter, to reach former customers and students, remind them I exist every once in a while. Maybe 2016 will be the year that happens.

I do want to work on discipline in the coming year. I'm not entirely sure how to address it, the past I haven't stuck well to strict schedules. I'm open to suggestions! Anybody else have a problem getting themselves into the studio as much as they need to be? How did you address it?

I have a firing coming up in the January 8th; once that's done I can repopulate the online Pottery Shop. I sold much of the inventory, and it needed refreshing anyway.


Gina said...

I have been selling hand painted ceramics on Etsy for several years. I love Etsy. I think that you will also once you give it a try.
The only negative is that ceramics are heavy and therefore, shipping is costly, but that can't be helped.
Wishing you lots of success in the coming year. ox Gina

Lori Watts said...

Thanks for your comment! Believe me, I did give Etsy a more than fair chance, for several years;I gave it up because the only way to get anything out of it as a studio potter was to spend more time promoting than I actually spent making! I found that real-world sales were time better spent.

Soap, I am hoping, will be different, in part because I don't need to sell it, and in part because I don't have to make a separate listing for each item. I also won't be promoting, apart from a link here and the occasional tweet. If I have sales, great, if not, no big.

Happy New Year to you as well!