This year, our town of Maple Vally decided to have a Farmer's Market (Saturdays only) and see how well it does through the summer. My friend Lara Lutrick and I took the plunge and signed up for four dates to sell our lampwork glass beads and jewelry together at the Maple Valley Creative Arts Council booth. The weekend I got back from my family vacation was our first day and boy, was I a nervous wreck! It's the first time I've put myself into a merchandising mode to sell to the general public, vs. making things for my clients or published work. I didn't have nearly the inventory I had hoped for, but I know I'll eventually get there (assuming my stuff sells well?! ack!) I was scrambling like a crazy person to create more beads and finished jewelry up to the night before—to the point where I even seriously considered tapping into the Rock Star energy drinks I bought "just in case." But I was too scared to see how skitzo they might make me, so I prevailed on my own (and a little help from Starbuck's Mocha Frappacchinos! ;-D)
Here's a quick shot of my table set-up, just before the Market opened up for business. Lara and I had separate tables, and it was really nice to share the booth and have company during the day. Over time, I've collected several sterling plated dishes from our local Goodwill to use around my studio and hold some of my projects while I work. I decided to use them for some of my display pieces on the table and I think they really class up my presentation. Still a few kinks to work out and I need a nicer earring display, but overall, I was pretty happy with how it all turned out in the end!
These are all the earrings I made, using my glass beads and fine silver charms created with Precious Metal Clay (PMC). I also used sterling silver, Swarovski crystals, and pearls in my designs. My faves are the stamped PMC circles and black crystal dangles in the lower row—I think I might have to keep these for myself?! I also made pendants, bracelets, necklaces, wine stoppers, and stationary sets and I tried to offer a variety that would appeal to a wide range of budgets as well. I didn't get a chance to photograph each piece at home, so I'll have to do that later on.
I did better than I had hoped for and we both had a great time talking with people and seeing them admire our work. Naturally, (ooh, I think I just made a pun?! LOL) I had to snag some fresh-baked goodies, Rainier cherries and a bouquet of flowers while I was there too, right? And my head is brimming with tons of new design ideas to offer the next times I'll be there again. (BTW, can you find how I used some of my Groovy Flower beads? ;-D)
Here is my upcoming schedule (from 9 am to 1 pm): August 15, September 12, and October 3.
If you live in the area, I'd love to have you stop by to check out the Market and say "Hi!" to me and Lara. And I'm also going to be listing several things on my Etsy store soon, now that I finally have an inventory building up (yeah!). So stay tuned, folks!