I started this 'business' 1 year ago. In that time I have made hardly any sales. I've spent a ton of money. And I'm not sure how I'm going to pay off all the bills. So it's time for a little whining.
Earlier this year I decided that the only way to make money was to get myself out there and do shows. I waited till mostly the holiday season because I thought that would be the best time to sell. So between November and December I scheduled myself for 5 shows. The first 3 were not horrible. They definitely could have been better, but they were not horrible. Last night was number 4. Tempe Night Market. This event was from 5 - 10pm. It was in downtown Tempe with all the lights and restaurants. It was also the night of the lighted boat parade and fireworks. I thought, this will be good. I need to stop f*cking thinking. It was the absolute worst of all. It was cold and windy and hell. Our booth was located so that we got this really nice wind accelerating between two buildings then coming around the corner and slamming us. That was awesome. I made these amazing stands for my artwork that made them easy to see and looked really good. Well, with that wind we couldn't use them. My laser never got used. NEVER. I think I sold 3 things. I did not even make back the booth fee and we spend more than we made. Freaking awesome. On top of that we were completely miserable the entire time. It was so cold. Thankfully some friends came by and entertained us for an hour or so. But after they left, we began the slow process of packing up. These events make a big deal about not packing up early. They say you will never be invited back if you pack up early, thankfully that didn't matter to me, I'm not coming back. So about 8:30pm we started packing up. We would do a little and then stop. Then do a little more and stop. Finally, around 9:30 we started seeing people really packing up and we just went for it. The event ended at 10pm and by 10:03 I was heading to get the car. We got that packed up and were on the road by 10:18. Thankfully we have the car packing down pretty well and can do it quickly.
This is really making me think, can I do this? I mean I know that I'm making mistakes. I know that I'm doing things wrong. I realize now I'm focusing on the wrong aspects of this. I also realize that I do not devote enough time to this endeavor. And most importantly, I realize that I have no freaking idea what I'm doing running a business. Okay, so I joined Bloom Accelerator which is a course/group/whatever devoted just to makers and marketing. In January she will be doing a year long planning session, she's even sending up a planner. So I'm going to give it one more year. I'm going to follow her methods exactly. I'm going to devote time to doing the things that are proven to work. I'm also going to learn how to create my own designs. I can start with existing designs and alter them and eventually lead to creating my own designs. I'm also going to improve my craft. I saw a person last night who did laser ornaments and they were amazing. Time to up my game. Then, one year from now, I will reevaluate the whole situation.
It was very easy to let last night get me down. But I think I just need to look to the future. I think I may need to rethink some of my setup too. But those are thoughts for another post.