It’s back to school season here. I’m not planning a return to school but I am returning to working in and on Bridgwater Crafts!
I didn’t officially leave but I’ve been inactive for far too long! So much of my life changed a few years ago and in some ways, I never recovered. I finally feel like I have both my creativity and my energy back. I want to create again. I need to create again.
My life will never return to what it was but it can still be wonderful. It can still include old goals and dreams but some may need adjustments.
I’m working on getting back into the habit of thinking and working as a biz owner not just as a crafter. I’m trying to figure out where I want to go from here and how to get there. So much has changed since the last time I figured out goals and plans.
I have a lot to work through. I have a few small goals and plans in mind to start. Now it’s just to recreate habits and gain momentum!
Yesterday I attended my first event as a vendor! It was the annual Christmas Arts & Crafts Fair in my community. I’ve attended as a buyer many times since moving here as a child. Vending this year was a spur of the moment decision made just last month. I wasn’t sure how successful it would be or if I would sell enough to be a profitable endeavour.
I haven’t completed an inventory of my remaining stock yet but I believe it was profitable both financially and from a marketing standpoint. My business was brought to the attention of many new people. I received an email this morning from the coordinator. 2017 may have broken records for attendees!
I didn’t make everything I wanted in time for the fair and third-party products were not allowed so I couldn’t sell dōTERRA products or promote that side of my business. But I learned a lot regarding the local audience; the products they look for; made contacts and gave out business cards to more than my buyers but other attendees as well.
For this first vendor event, I had a mix of crochet and knit products and some products made with dōTERRA essential oils. I inventoried all products brought; had bags ready with a business card in each; had more business cards out on the table; brought a few props; and made notes of requested items and things to do differently next time.
My niece, Mackenzie, helped me with the booth. We worked well together. She expressed interest not only in helping me make new products but also in helping me vend at future events. We brainstormed a little on new products we could make using essential oils. Having both of us at the table brought an overlapping group of acquaintances, family and friends resulting in reaching new customers.
Some of the things I learned were:
– iron or wash my tablecloth (a twin bed flat sheet) prior to use, it was visibly wrinkled!
– have multiples of the same items in the same colours and sizes, I had a few parents and grandparents wanting matching items including one wanting matching hats for her twin granddaughters (she bought two in similar colours instead)
– people want larger bottles of Epson Salt
-sparkly ornaments draw in children which then draws in their parents!
– sitting and standing while wearing winter boots causes foot pain!
– locals will purchase my products!!!
– giving out lots of business cards results in new viewers to the website and sign-ups to the newsletter!
– money earned is not the only indicator of a successful event!
Yesterday was a surprisingly productive day. Surprising because I’m in a flare (fibro) and having almost constant dizzy spells. I haven’t been able to do a lot. But when I look back on the day quite a bit was accomplished.
I woke up early to get my nephew ready for school. Mira and I walked him to school. I made essential oil samples (Lavender and Balance). I packaged up samples for spŌIL Yourself. I’m vending at a local craft fair in a few weeks. I worked on products for the craft fair. I bottled two sizes of bath salts. I made some lip balms. I need to work on that recipe a bit more. The results were creamier than expected and work better in a jar than an applicator. I watched numerous youtube videos while working on other things. I worked on a crochet hat for the fair.
I didn’t read as much as I’d hoped. My focus is decreased by the flare and being dizzy does not help. I have so many books I want to read but no attention. It’s frustrating as reading is a huge part of my life and has been since childhood. I feel wrong when I don’t read. But when I’m flaring and dizzy I just can’t.
I was in contact with someone I’ve known and worked with for years. She is going to join the spŌIL Yourself week. I reached out to a few others but am still waiting to hear back.
I received word that an RN I used to work with was killed in a motorcycle accident in Jamaica. That was hard. I had contact with her both as a co-worker and as a patient. She removed some of my staples after my thyroidectomy. I didn’t know her well but I knew her.