Sunday, July 22, 2018

TTFN, Pottery Stairs!

Just checking in with my pottery peeps! It's been a month or so since I posted, and in that time I have been busily making. Wholesale is all delivered for the season, and my next event is not until the end of August, but I am (for once!) not waiting until the last possible second.

And of course there are also consignment outlets to keep full.

Usually in the summer I would have a steady drip of income from the Pottery Stairs, but things have gone awry this year. While theft has always been factored in to the cost of my honor-system stand - occasionally someone would take an envelope & not send the money, or even every once in a while an outright theft of a piece or two - this year it's crazy. Like, every day a couple of pieces just disappear. Even when people took envelopes, which I take as meaning they intend to pay, only one of four envelopes returned to me with payment.
The Pottery Stairs in better days

While it's tempting to see this as further evidence that the world is getting shittier, I think two things account for the change. The outright thefts - someone just seeing something they like & taking it - are probably one person, or maybe two, together. The payments that never arrive are probably due to economic strains: people intend to pay, but every pay period, that pottery envelope is the least important thing, until it falls behind the radiator and is forgotten. Gas, oil, power, and food costs have all risen. Augusta's not a wealthy city, and real wages have fallen particularly hard in rural areas since last summer. People are hurting.

Whatever the cause, for now there's a moratorium on the Pottery Stairs. It's not just the loss of product - these are seconds, so any cash that comes in from them is essentially found money - but it bums me out. And with only one of four envelopes coming back with payment, it's not worth the hit my mood takes when the thefts occur; no one like to be stolen from, however minor the loss. So it's Ta-Ta For Now, Pottery Stairs.

Was that a bummer? Could you use a cute cat pic to cheer you up? If so, here is a cute cat pic:
Jack (orange), Petey (grey), Noodle (white w/ black) & Finn (black w white)


Mimi said...

Man, that is sad. I bought a pot from your pottery stairs myselfonce and wondered that something so nice could still exist today. Kudos to you for trying to see that honesty still exists. I wonder if the person(s) taking things will pay it back sometime. I imagine someone needing some things and having no money but someday doing something nice for you because you "gave" them something they could really use. Either way, go you. And...beautiful kitties.

Lori Watts said...

I do occasionally have envelops arrive in the middle of the winter, months after the stairs have been put away for the season.

I'll try again next summer.

Anonymous said...

Lori, I guess it shouldn't come as a surprise these days that the honor system isn't being honored - but it is really disappointing to hear your experience.

Keep an eye on press releases to see if any of it shows up at the White House . . .

Lori Watts said...


smartcat said...

You have come up with some good excuses, but face it some people just don’t care.
I’m not sure why but it reminds me of a favorite quote by Colette, “Bad manners have ruined many a family.

Lori Watts said...

Oh, I know there are some jerks in the world. It's just, it worked for 14 years. Why is this summer different? There have always been jerks, that isn't new.

Michèle Hastings said...

How disappointing. As I was reading I too wondered if it was the same person/people doing the taking.Perhaps if you give it a break for the rest of the year, next year they will have moved on to some other nefarious behavior by next summer. We had a very large wood fired pot stolen from our yard while we were at a show. It just seems so shitty to steal from artists.

Lori Watts said...

The increase in theft is so sudden that it very well might be just one person or group of people. Sketchy people move around a lot, so I will try it again next summer, for sure. I feel bad because I've had so many good, honest customers over the years, and they have let me know they will miss the pottery stairs.

Upside: it will mean a HUGE Pots By The Pound sale in October.