explainin loooosy

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You can see by my blog that I have many interests, including sewing, drawing and writing about various crafty art related things.
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Friday, 14 October 2011

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it's off to business registers and tax invoices and...eh...

It's funny to look back now and imagine the ideas I had of nurturing this craft, my notions of tenderly encouraging it along to one day grow up to be a fully fledged hobby.
Not to complain, but I just wasn't ready for the things that crop up along the way.What started as a happily lumbering, moss covered stone, has since been picked up and hurtled into the near future and now it is my job to run after behind it, arms flailing - paperwork and calculators falling from pockets.
I have learnt that with every silver lining, comes a cloud that needs to be tended to rather swiftly.
Being wonderfully inundated with orders and watching my items sell is seriously satisfying and heartwarming stuff. But with each sale comes a quarry of questions and conundrums.
First off: design the product.
If it is a custom order, then I need to conceptualize the shape and materials used.
Second: time frame. Does this need to have precedence over other creations? Do I need to stay up a few nights to complete this? Will the cranky tired factor vs the getting things done value equal out?
Thirdly: pricing. I have read so much material on this and taken equal amounts of advice. But ultimately it is my call, and I must do disgusting maths (eh) to work out how much I will be making an hour on a project and if it is going to be comparable to a real job (eh) or if I will be making someone's day and eating green potatoes and home made baked beans for the week.

All well and good. We're coasting along now and have some sort of formula to work these things out. But wait, another amazing opportunity arises - time to get the umbrella out.
A large order for a shop "send me the invoice". Brilliant, I am doing my happy dance and feel all smug and cushy inside.
However, firstly: I need to work out rate of cost. How do I do this? how do I work out what will be worth my time and materials vs marking down for an amazing opportunity?
Secondly: I need an ABN to create a tax invoice properly. How do I create a tax invoice? What about Me? What happened to my TAB- no time for that now*

Ok, working all these things out, I am approached by a couple of retail /gallery owners who sell based on commission.
Woot! Happy joy joy, get out the bucket though - because now the roof is leaking.
Firstly: How much commission?! is it worth having my items in your space for exposure vs what you will be taking from all my hard work?
Secondly: exclusivity. Now the tricky problem of who has what in which shop and where? Also Who Hung Woo Where What Why When? Keep it together, more problems that need addressing yet.
Thirdly: Wholesaling. Do I still offer these items online? I must make sure that I am not undercutting these people by having customers come to me and bypassing the shops all together.

So I have learnt that I must be aware that for every positive there seems to be a tangled knot that needs working out.

I know that people have been doing this for centuries, but I can understand why for many people it is just so much easier to put on a uniform, clock on to work, catch those chickens, crunch those numbers, sell those ice-creams and come home and do it all over again again again...

Eh. Think I'll just get out my calculator thanks.

*wild Simpson's reference.

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