Stephen makes some great point here that we should all pay attention
A. The internet. This has changed the business model for all
retailers. Not just jewelry. Why fight a crowd milling about with
double wide strollers, dogs, dust, sticky fingered children, and
sometimes foul weather for a jewelry purchase when you can relax, sit
in front of your computer with a beer or cup of coffee and see
everything on line? Etsey has replaced the craft show.
B. Impulse purchases are down with the economy and disposable
income. Folks are still buying, but they have less to spend and no
credit, so they are thinking things through very carefully.
As Stephen says…“The most noticeable type of sale that is down is
the standard production item pot-boiler designs that are usually the
easiest to make and sell. This is also the category that does best at
shows. Custom work and repairs are holding steady.”
With CAD and China cranking out “pot-boiler” pieces it is up to us,
the craftsmen, to be flexible and able to change and reinvent
ourselves and our products to not compete with them, but to find
another niche that will make us a step above the ordinary.
Have fun and make lots of jewelry.