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Bring it on

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The Christmas stress begins…….only 4 weeks until my first of two christmas jewellery stalls.  Lots to do, no time to talk!!

I’ve got two days off work this week to dedicate to jewellery prep so no time to waste…..hopefully I’ll have good things to report by the end of the week.

 

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Taking stock

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Self Raising flower workbench

Sorting out my jewellery stock.

I had a minor panic the last time I was putting together an online order when I couldn’t find the right pair of earrings straight away.  They were there, just well hidden and it made me realise that I really need to get organised if I stand a chance of being able to run a small business on my own.  I’ve made a good start, printed off the inventory list from both my Self Raising Flower online stores (on etsy.com and on Facebook) and have started to check off stock items and re-home them into labelled boxes.  If I can get my stock in order it should be a pretty slick operation the next time I get an online sale.

And when I’ve organised the online stock I’m going to turn my attention to the boxes of stock that I have saved for my market stalls.  I’m hoping that if I get chance to make some new pieces of jewellery before Christmas then some of the new stock can come to the markets with me and some of the summer market stock can be listed online to freshen up the online stores a bit…..juts have to find time to do the photography.  Never enough hours!

 

comMission Complete.

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So here we are, finally I can reveal the finished commission pieces I’ve been working on day and night for 5 weeks.  My cousin Hattie asked me to make three unique gifts for her bridesmaids……of course I was happy to do so.  But when she also asked for cufflinks for the groom, it became a whole different ball […]

My July workbench

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my workbench covered in clay

looks like chaos, but it’s not

So I have 5 different clay canes on the go at once, all destined for a set of very special commission pieces for one customer.  I quite like the messy look.  I like that I can still lay my fingertips on exactly what I need, I can see beautiful colours and glimmers of ideas jumping out at me from amongst the piles of scrap clay and failed attempts.  At least if I’ve caused this much mess I must have been doing something!

At this point in the project I can say 4 our of 4 of the pieces have had to be started all over again due to some reason so while I’ve probably worked nearly 20 hours, I’d say about a third of that time has been put down to ‘a learning exercise’.

On to the next lesson…..

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I was so impressed with myself, pretty proud of what I’d achieved, it had been 2 and half hours sitting at the table, following all the design sketched I’d done over the previous days and the ens result was fab.  I was bouncing round the kitchen with glee at what I’d produced.  A commissioned pair of cufflinks with a very special personal touch.

I went to bed happy.

But when I took another look at my creation the next morning…………………I realised I’d made a technical error in the design.  I debated for a while if it really mattered, was it really worth wasting all that time and effort for something that most people probably wouldn’t even notice.  But I had noticed and that was all that mattered, I couldn’t live with it, I couldn’t give these cufflinks knowing I wasnt 100% happy with them.

So I started again.

“do you do commission pieces?”…..ermmm??

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I’ve always said “no, sorry” in the past.

But this time I said “yeah, sure”.

Aaaaaagggghhhhh!

I’m honoured to be asked, proud that I was brave enough to say say yes and excited at the prospect of delivering something amazing to an eagerly waiting customer.

But I’m also terrified I’ve taken on too much, its not an easy job, 4 individual pieces for a wedding and only 4 weeks notice.  I can’t bring my self to charge as it’s for family but if I pull it off I’ll get quite a lot of exposure from it which is exactly what I need right now.  The thing is, I’ve always said no in th epast to commission work for a very good reason.  I prefer to work on a random, “let’s see what today brings” kind of free spiritted way, and never produce my best work when under pressure of trying too hard to conform to a pre destined design.

But never the less, I have done lots of sketching and plans for this and am ready to go it a go.  But the knot in the pit of my stomach tells me I am nervous that I won’t deliver the high standard of design and craftmanship that everyone, including myself, is expecting.  I can’t afford to mess this up, the opportunity is great and I don’t think my confidence could take a bashing like failing to deliver for a family wedding.

Everything to lose so got to go for it 100%.

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