WE DID IT!
We lived, we survived...
We made it through our first Street Fair as "Mostly Monsters CV".
So, now the "after party" style clean-up begins.
Fortunately, rather than sweeping, mopping, and picking up trash, this clean-up involves cheerfully digging through boxes and repacking goods while determining exactly which items sold well (Ka-CHING $$$), sorting through tickets from the items you sold to figure out which ones to make for next time (Ka-CHING $$$), and of course, tallying up all the receipts and Square payments logged to see what's making it to the bank. (KA-CHING!!!!!! $$$).
Okay, so we're not talking big bucks, but hey, that's a lot more fun than playing with a bucket and mop! And all the hard labor was done yesterday, packing up the goods, breaking down the canopy, and loading the car when the show was over. (Followed by many hours of hard snoring.)
We wanted to share just how AWESOME our day was...not CUTE (see yesterday's rant), but AWESOME!!! Yes, the new phrase typically used to describe our stuff. Should we say it again? AWESOME!
Started our morning with a crazy run-around before, during, and after set-up, because we were specially invited to be part of a TV Spot for the event! YAY TELEVISION! We had been told we'd be on a particular station, so we posted that info on our FB page and told all our friends the night before (we ourselves only had about 20 hours notice), and when we got there...oh, wait, change your DVR! We were on a DIFFERENT Station! Being lifelong Girl Scouts, we were PREPARED! And we not only got "Camera flashed" on TV, we got a talking part! Taylor may actually be a member of the Screen Extras Guild, but Sabrina got an actual mini-interview on camera! So Brad Perry from KUSI News is actually now one of our staunchest supporters! (More on that as the story develops.) No, seriously, Brad is crazy about our stuff, and gave our Monsters some awesome airtime! Soon as we can get the link to the footage, we'll get that posted. And if you find yourself lying in bed on the weekends, tune to San Diego's KUSI and watch for BRAD PERRY...he's awesome!
So the rest of the day was awesome (why do we feel we should do a Pee Wee's Playhouse SCREAM when we hear the word of the day?)
Busy, busy, busy.
And TOTALLY unpredictable.
We've usually been pretty adept at knowing which items well sell best at particular venues (call it "Crafter's Radar"- a type of 6th sense you develop after years and years of hanging out at shows), but this was unlike anything we expected. We had plotted and planned for lots of dollar items and pocket-sized goods to sell, and we did sell quite a few of those. And we "knew" that when the weather's hot, people don't handle FUR, so we assumed (you know what they say about assuming!) that the furry hats would have them looking, but wouldn't be the money maker.
As the thermometer rose with the sun during set-up, we quickly lowered our expectations and consoled ourselves with the thought that we had lots of mini-items to recoup the entry fee.
WE WERE WRONG! Fur, fur, and more fur!
Popular sale of the day: FURRY HATS!
And Cuddle Monsters.
THANK YOU Brad Perry!
We know our stuff is unique and adorable, but it was awesome (YAY!) to hear over and over
"Hey, I saw you on TV this morning!"
and "Hey, weren't you on TV?" as they stopped dead in their tracks and dashed to our booth.
Many times during the day, 1 of us had to stand OUTSIDE the booth to make sure there was room for customers, while the other was trapped in the corner cashiering!
So to sum it up...the day was AWESOME!!! (Yay!)
And we also have to thank a bunch of people
(Oscar Speech List of the day):
SCOTT for being our driver of "The Scary Van of STUFF"
"The North Park Craft Mafia" for letting us be a part of the club,
KATIE for agreeing to be our MODEL for the afternoon Fashion Show
JEAN (her mom) for driving the lovely Katie all the way from Alpine for us
SAM for coming down and visiting us and acting as "back-up model"
THE BLUE FLASH MOB for entertaining us in front of our booth
NOHELY for being a willing workhorse and helping to load the van
BRAD PERRY for making us minor celebrities for the day
and anyone and everyone else who helped blast info about our shop!
Oh...one last word: AWESOME!!! (YAY!!!)
What will tomorrow's word of the day be?
So, here we are.
Back in the craft biz after a LONG time away.
But we've got a new style, a new look, and some KILLER cute stuff! Most Crafters we've met have either been doing this for a loooooooooooooong time, or they are NEW to the Crafting World.
Our old crafting buddies friends who've been somewhere in the middle have either moved on to other things, or they've gone on to make it in the BIG TIME!
So, since we've re-entered the crazy world of sewing machines, paints, canopies, and cash, we figured we'd better see what lessons we could take from the LAST go-round. Those who don't learn from the past are doomed to repeat it, right?
So for my other craft friends who will probably be the only ones who ever read these rantings and ravings, let's review the two phrases heard by every last crafter on the planet....over and over and over again!
And dear Lord, please help me to remember to nod and smile every time I hear these phrases during the next 10 years, so I don't lose my sanity!
(She says on bended knee- yes, seriously and in all sincerity.)
"THAT'S SO CUTE"!
What a heartwarming phrase! Makes a crafter giddy to hear it.
The first 5,000 times. And of course, it's quite flattering!
SOMEBODY likes my stuff I worked so hard to create! But unfortunately, it doesn't pay the bills. So although I will sincerely WISH to have a nickel (or hey, even a PENNY!) for each time I will hear this (again) during the remainder of my Crafting career, I ask for the strength to continue to SMILE every time I hear this! And I hope my friends will remind me to be HAPPY the customers are still saying this 10 or 20 years from now! No matter how hard it begins to grate on my nerves. Whew.
"I CAN MAKE THIS."
Which is often modified to
"I should buy this and copy this!" or
"I could make one of these for ___(insert name of celebration here, i.e. Jenny's birthday, Aunt Hilda's party, etc.)"
or the dreaded
"That's so simple, I can totally copy this." which often concludes with...(dun dun duh....)"AND SELL THEM!!!"
This is the face-to-face version of the dreaded Pinterest re-pin of your item (which by the way is CLEARLY marked with a price and hyperlinked to your online shop) to the "I can make this" board.
In any case, here's our short response:
"Yes, you probably could. But WOULD you?"
The real response that goes on behind the scenes in my swirling brain:
"OUCH! Hello? Are you serious? You are going to say this in FRONT of me?
I wish you would realize that I am NOT doing this just for FUN- this is my JOB. And I don't put in 40 hours a week...it's more like 140. Plus."
I hope that you, the darling customer, won't notice that I am trying very hard to keep it to myself that I would prefer not to tell you where I bought that specialty fabric, how to sew it together, what machine I use, how I hand-stitched it so carefully, how many hours I spent creating it, and what the pattern should look like. This is a REAL job, as well as a labor of love.
I wouldn't ask Betsy Johnson where to buy that particular fabric so I could copy her dress, although I've often been told that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Flattery doesn't pay for college tuition.
(BREATHE IN-BREATHE OUT. Shake it off.)
All I ask is a little courtesy. Plagiarism stinks. Sigh.
So, if you are a crafter reading this, know we are all in the same boat, and have ALL heard this, and I sympathize with you, fellow crafter who finds themselves trapped at their worktable at 2:00 AM.
And if you are a potential CUSTOMER reading this, please take a moment, and realize that crafters are real people working for a living, and please...
BE NICE to us too! We're artisans, and we work very, very hard to create our goods that we offer to you.
Okay, enough ranting. Time to pack up the van for a VERRRRRRY long day at tomorrow's Street Fair, and time to arm ourselves for the
"CUTE" & "COPY" speeches about to come our way...we love our customers, but this job is not an easy one. Good thing we LOVE it!!!
Thoughts from the Monsters...
Sabrina & Taylor are the sole employees at "Mostly Monsters", so we :