so much to learn, grasshopper

In the lead up to the last market, I discovered a few things. Stuffing woollen toys with polyfill is a linty, linty business and no amount of brushing will remove the film of polyfill from the outside of the toy afterwards. I'm thinking of fillings other than polyfill and also thinking of making a kind of cloth funnel to help with this but in the meantime I googled lint removal and the answer had me going d'oh. Sticky tape. Wide packing tape wound around my fingers. Very effective. The bears went to the market with their ears pressed and lint free. I was very proud of them.
I also discovered that even though I didn't leave everything until the last minute, I was pretty busy the day before and also that I am still capable of a painful, chest tightening panic attack. Even though I knew there was nothing much to worry about, really. It's not really about the market per se. More about my slowness in moving any of my endeavours to a better paying basis. There is just so much to learn and do. The market was not a failure but also not what I would call a success. Although I think I did better than some other stalls but not as well as the stall next to me which was really well thought out and set up. Indeed I spent quite some time watching the lady and her stall. Lots to learn there.
I need to get the paypal thing on my phone working. Or find another one. The PayPal customer service is really pleasant but they tell you different things about how it works. One section says there is a card reader and another says not. They also said it would work way before it actually did. Anyway, it really needs to be working before my next market. I also should design and order sew in tags for all my toys and sewn goods. I don't really like tags in toys myself but you would be surprised the number of people that have asked or commented about this. I have found a tag that I think will be soft and not too obtrusive so maybe it will be good.. Also need to devise a label for the wooden toys, perhaps a brand or a stamp, get proper business cards, design and print a card for the buttons, make/get a box for the buttons, agree on a finish for the buttons, learn all about shopping carts and various components for my website, finish said fecking website, find a way to make a banner for my stall (the computer prints wash out), work out a feasible stall set up and get G to make the props. Then I need to also make things. This is the fun bit but sometimes it gets lost under all the other stuff. I really need to get cracking on our Christmas season stock, replenish the nibbles, lizards and soft jumper toys,  develop a small bear and make some clothes for the big bears.

And I need to vote. Because I'm going to craft camp! Yay!


Stomper Girl said...

I think a break-even on your stall in your 'beginner ' days is really a success. It is pretty big doing your own business and there IS so ugh to think about all the time. You spend your life planning and tweaking, I find. You seem to have a good handle on it.

Hope you all have an excellent time at Craft Camp.

Anonymous said...

Sounds exhausting! But I agree, I think breaking even and identifying areas for improvement is pretty impressive at this stage.

If you can get a stamp for the wooden toys, could you use the same stamp on some petersham ribbon for a tag on the toys?

Looking forward to seeing you at craft camp and hearing all the nitty gritty.

Laura Jane said...

I got some sew-in labels for my bags and things, like you put on the kids school clothes. They come in various sizes, and cost very little for 100s of them.

The stamp idea is a good one, perhaps with a simple swing tag.

The bears look beautiful. I am making Alley Katz for a charity (in my *cough* spare time) I just make em and send them to someone else, but I try to visit them on the stall, and I make sure they all have a portrait sitting before they leave home. They go on my screensaver, so I get to see my kitties for a long time.

That agenda sounds quite enough to be getting on with. Have a wonderful time at crarfcamp <3

The lint is a BAD part. The sticky tape idea is brilliant!!!