I am not an artist, nor am I a craftsman, but I am surrounded by a talented group of both. Because of Seaglass I meet artists, craftsmen, artisans, builders, and makers every month and I love taking the time to meet them, look at their photos and tell them the ins and outs of the application process at our monthly market. I don’t only take the time to speak to professional artists, I can spend an hour with a stay at home mom looking to do something outside the house or with a Full Time (insert profession here) whose creative side is pulling at them to sell their product. One thing that always makes people stand out to me is confidence. In order to sell your product you must be able to sell yourself, and to do that efficiently you must know your worth.
It is so difficult for some people to put themselves out there, to be critiqued by others, especially in a world that has become so very cynical. I cannot tell you how often I hear, “That’s cool, but I could totally do THAT,” as people walk through the market. I of course think, but never say, “Really, then why don’t you?” Honestly…it is no where near as easy as you think. Being an artist or artisan in today’s #shopsmall world is hard. People are mean. The artist or artisan do not hear the thousands of compliments, but that one negative comment will ring in their head all day. No matter how good you are you will always wonder if you are good enough.
Everyone has different styles and tastes. Find what yours is, find what your good at and don’t hold back. If you do not realize how talented you are, how will others perceive you? How will they value your work? One of the reasons we do not barter at SSM is because our items are priced to sell. Fair for the consumer and fair for the seller. An artist, a craftsman knows how much their products costs and they know how much time the final product entails. They aren’t looking to become rich. but they know their worth. When I overhear people on the phone say, “We’re in Leland at this little Arts & Crafts sale.” (or something to that effect) It makes my stomach hurt. There are Arts and there are Crafts, but I do not see anything made from Popsicle Sticks and Construction Paper. Part of my job, possibly the most important part, is choosing vendors. Of course the product being sold is important, but there is so much more involved. It’s the whole package, yes, the packaging when applicable, but also the WHOLE package. How they carry themselves and view and explain their product is as important as the quality of their product. Their attitude, personality and smile are import to me as what the sell. Part of the reason Seaglass works is because our vendors believe in themselves and each other.
Being an Artist or Artisan and a Small Business owner is not all about making pretty things. Besides creating, which is a job in itself, there is accounting, marketing, purchasing, office management, and shipping. Then of course there is pricing, displaying and keeping up with your inventory…all while smiling when someone asks if you’ll take 50% less that what your item is priced at! After being involved with Seaglass for three years I will tell you, I no longer barter with local vendors. I decide how much I love or need the product and if I am willing to purchase it for the amount listed. If I want it enough I buy it. If not, I smile tell them their product is awesome and move on. Normally, if they have priced their item with room to play they will offer a different price and we can go from there. If not, I know I didn’t leave them with that negative comment that will ring in their head all day.
Seaglass Salvage Market is not a Flea Market or an Arts & Crafts Fair. It is a legitimate business, a shop. We just happen to be open one weekend a month. Although we are only open approximately 34 days a year, I promise you we work year round! Our goal is to live our dream of loving what we do while making you, the consumer, happy! The hard work and dedication of each Seaglass Salvage Market vendor is to keep you coming back, and we do that my pouring our heart and sweat into what we do. We know our worth and we are so grateful for those of you who know it too.
We started sharing Bio’s of the Indoor Vendors, and they have been received so well by everyone! We are excited to continue to share them with you. If there is anything else you are curious about and would like to see on our FB Page or here, on our Blog, let us know! We look forward to seeing you at the January Market 1/19-21!