Sunday, May 24, 2015

Student Work

Thought you might like to see what the students in Wheel 1 have been making. Of the three students I have now, one had classes as a kid that were mostly handbuilding, then she went to college grew up and came back for wheel class.One had no prior experience and the third could throw but wanted to do some fine tuning. Two have been with me 6 months, the other about 3. I'm very proud of them so I had to share. On to the pictures.

3rd teapot ever

4th teapot ever

Learning to trim a bowl

cylinders improving

First Chip/ Dip

Nice big plate

Friday, May 15, 2015

Just Gimme a Second !

Two weeks ago we had Spring Fair. I sold a lot of pots but it did essentially nothing toward clearing out some space in the studio. This left me with a lot of old stuff sitting around filling up my rapidly shrinking shelf space. I know this is a controversial thing in the arts but a seconds sale became more appealing.. Do you really want to sell stuff at a reduced price? Do you really want your "less than best" out there with your name on it? When is something a second instead of landfill? For years I have donated to a seconds sale that our club has in conjunction with our Empty Bowls event. I have had people buy from me at shows to get pieces to go with those they bought at Empty Bowls so I don't think it hurts me in that way. Quality wise the worst stuff I will put out may have a thin spot in the glaze or a handle that is a little crooked. and a big black X on the bottom to show that it is a second. I also include a lot of pots that have just been around too long or do not fit my current body of work I think that when I explain why these pieces that look fine to them are seconds, it enhances the quality of my regular stock.

To cut to the chase, a few of us got together and had a sale last Saturday.It was promoted with handouts at Spring Fair and on social media.There were only half a dozen of us and we really did not draw a big crowd, especially after Facebook started showing the wrong address for some reason. Even so, I put out two tables of stuff, yard sale style. No tent, no racks, just put it on the table.Sitting in the shade with friends is not a bad way to spend the day but when you sell a bunch of pots at the same time it is even better. I sold about half of what I brought including several big jars that were eating up space. Didn't get rich but I had several hundred dollars and it only took a few minutes to pack up at three o'clock. Yup three not five. Very civilized.

I got so inspired that I have been reorganizing the shelves in the studio and boxing up remaining seconds for Empty Bowls. It is not until November but they will store in the other shed all boxed up. I will have more space and not have to rush around in October. Let me know your opinion on selling clearance and seconds. Thanks for stopping.


Sunday, May 3, 2015

Spring Fair

May 2 was Clay Alliance Pottery Fair in Cincinnati. I had been sorting and loading all week and trying hard not to bring everything I own. I arrived at the show site as the sun was coming up and started unloading the van. The nice volunteer lady was amazed at how much stuff was in the van but she dived right in and it only took a few minutes to set it all on the curb and head off to park. I think I took over 3 hours setting up. The first show of the year is always a bit of a puzzle to figure out where everything is going to fit and I take my time with it. I can't see any point in rushing. I like to get it all together then take a walk and say hello to my friends maybe grab a coffee and a nibble too. When I get back to the booth it's time for a quick review and a little reshuffle before patrons start coming. I had several of my pickin' buddies show up, previous customers, new customers, customers who had received my pots as gifts from other customers and lots of pottery friends. I got a good sale and a good order from folks who bought a bunch last year and turned down an order for 150 steins. I like making multiples but I really don't want to turn this into a full time job. I sent that one down to a friend of mine who would appreciate the opportunity.

It was a perfect day for a show, partly cloudy, low 70's, and a light breeze. From about 11:30 to 1:00 I was swamped.. I was wrapping as fast as I could and quickly going through my bubble wrap. The new display box for the cereal bowls worked well and I sold a couple of dozen of them. I sold a set of plates, some individual plates, simple open baking dishes, utensil jars, some pitchers and a general mixed bag of stuff. It was warm out so mugs, casseroles and soup mugs were not really on peoples minds. There were a couple of bursts of activity in the afternoon but overall it was slower. I heard that I-71 had been shut down coming north out of Ky and that may have cut into the crowd a bit. This is usually my best show of the year and if you count the order I accepted for mugs I was about even with last year.

Maybe the nicest part was Tina was available and came down to help me pack, knock down and load. It usually takes me two hours but with her help and some better organized cases, we were off the grounds at 6:10. That was a new personal best and it was great to leave with others still on the street instead of being last !