Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Stretching Myself Too Thin... How Much Is Enough???

I started selling my handmade items on Etsy over 18 months ago and at the end of 2008, I branched out (slightly) to 1000 Markets and Art Fire. I also have high hopes of having some of my sea glass jewelry creations in a few B & M boutiques for this spring/summer. Recently, I also received an application to be a vendor at the 2009 North American Sea Glass Festival. That two day event will probably have more than 5,000 paying customers in attendance (last year's festival in Delaware, attracted nearly 4,000 on opening day)

Unfortunately, sea glass is a commodity that is in high demand and the quantities are diminishing quickly. The amount of people looking for sea glass on the local beach in NJ has more than quadrupled each of the last 2 years and with two young school-aged boys, I don't have the opportunities to travel abroad to more exotic locations that are known to turn up jewelry-quality sea glass from time to time.

It's quite a conundrum... I'd love to be behind the displays at the Sea Glass Festival, but I really don't think my inventory could withstand the 2 day event. Certainly, having sea glass in 3 online shops (though limited to 4 pieces ea in 2 of the shops) is beginning to stretch my inventory and adding future inventory to place in a few local B & Ms, will really thin out my dwindling supplies.

But...ohhh, to have the opportunity to sell my jewelry at THE prime show, what handmade artist could ever ask for anything more? It may be awhile before the Festival is back on the east coast again... what to do, what to do....

Highly sought after authentic component, dwindling supplies vs the chance at selling at a show geared entirely for your specific niche creations... what would you do?

'til next time....

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