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After the Purge

To Stamp or Not To Stamp…That is the question – An Update on Deciding to Sell Cards I Make
By Marion Davis, Artistic Guide

I know Stampers Quest is all about stamping. However, there is a change happening both in my life and in the crafting community.

In the community we are being pleasantly inundated with fabulous die cuts which frequently can stand alone or with a simple sentiment. We have also benefitted by the embossing folders that give such fabulous texture to our cards. Yes, these do enhance our stamping projects but they also can create great cards on their own and in conjunction with the die cuts.

I feel like a radical stating that but that is where the change in my life comes in. Basically I am a very proactive person. When life gives me lemons I make lemonade, lemon glazed chicken AND lemon meringue pie. My muse was on a permanent vacation since I had stopped swapping. Had it not been for my commitment to Stamper’s Quest and the classes I teach I probably would not have been stamping at all. Meanwhile I had so much stuff that I needed to think of a way to use it. You know I could not throw it out. I also wanted some of the new things and could not justify the purchase if I wasn’t sending cards.

As I stated in my previous blog this week, I decided to try to sell my cards at craft fairs and farmers markets. I wanted something very different to sell especially at the fairs since there is always at least one SU demonstrator and sometimes more at the fairs I have attended in my area. I opted to design cards with a minimum of stamping and sometimes none at all.  However, Stampers; do not despair!  Any of these cards could handle a stamp or two!

Finding craft fairs was next to impossible since deadlines for applications are not generally on the Internet and finding out who is in charge this year took several days. There are major vendors, but the fees were more than I was willing to gamble that I could make back. Plus doing shows solo at 68 was really a bit daunting.

I created some cards using 3D decoupage sheets I had in the house, some Geo-Die cut and tuck style pieces and some made with scrapbook papers and my old friends the Peel Off type stickers. Then one day I realized I didn’t know if people liked them or would be willing to pay for them, so I brought them to my exercise class and my computer club to show off. People wanted to buy them then and there. I was totally surprised. Do I have to tell you what a confidence boost that was? One of the women who purchased some cards showed them to a shop in the next town that carries unique handmade gifts. She then told me to contact them.

I met with them yesterday. They are taking at least half of my current stock on consignment and I need to spend the weekend creating seasonal and holiday cards which I had no intention of making. Guess I am going to be in the studio all weekend.

My final decision on the question of stamping or not stamping on my cards is INDECISION. Many of the sentiments should be stamped. This adds an addition step or three since copyright laws and angel policies require that we give credit. Some companies will provide a stamp for the back (no problem there) while others will require creating labels. I am going to need to make multiples of the same card to facilitate that and I really don’t like making a lot of the same card. I guess I will just need to adjust.

Meanwhile I am excited and feel validated in my art and that is A GOOD THING.

Here are a few more examples of the type of cards the shop is carrying.

 

The best part is they have told me what they want. Seasonal cards and projects like Easter baskets, Gift cards, Shape cards and they have lots of request for cats, dogs, butterflies, dragonflies and elephants. At least that will provide  my work focus for the next few weeks.


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6 Responses »

  1. Thanks for the update! I wish you luck in your sales. Keep us posted! I have to agree with every single thing you said, and for that reason, I am severely limiting my stamp buying. I spend money on ribbon, dies, and embossing folders as well as other embellishments instead. I treasure my stamps, but many are unused and just part of a "collection"!

  2. Marion: Your cards are very nice and I would think you would do pretty well at a local craft show. The idea of doing "unique" cards is well thought out. Maybe the idea of a 4-6 set would be profitable also. Good luck with your endeavor in card selling.

  3. I have the same question as Edna, how do you determine what to charge? Your cards are great.

  4. A great idea and my neighbor tried to talk me into doing this at some of our local places. But I have no idea what to charge for this. Any ideas? Have made get well, wedding, sympathy and birthday cards for friends but always give them away. Edna

  5. Fantastic news, well done you! Enjoy your creative weekend. x

  6. Wow, this is fabulous Marion! I'm so happy for you to have found an outlet for your art and talent... and it's great too to be able to recoup money from your craft! I look forward to reading future updates and of your successes!
    Hugs,
    Sharon