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Selling through Parties

Hi, everyone

Most of my career in metals has been more concerned with teaching
and some repair, not so much with selling. My emphasis lately has
taken a sharp bend towards selling my work (kids are grown and off to
college) and next month I hopefully move into a new studio (connected
to a new house, you can see where my priorities lie). One of my
students brought up selling by having someone host a party. I’m not
familiar with this but it sounds interesting. Does anyone use this
technique? It sounds more immediate than ramping up to do trade shows
which I’m not against doing either, just not yet ready for that. Can
anybody give me any advice on that? Thanks!

Robin C. McGee

My two main methods of selling are my Web site and trunk shows
hosted by friends.

I don’t think there’s anything in particular to do. I usually ask a
friend who has a really great house to host the show. I usually pay
for the refreshments, which are all tax-deductible, and get edibles
that are inexpensive but interesting enough that people know the
food will be good. I usually serve wine in addition to non-alcoholic

Sometimes my items are all over the house (with someone in each room
to keep an eye on things), sometimes they are limited to one room.
Sometimes I’m the only artist, sometimes I’m the only person selling
jewelry. (I don’t want to compete for jewelry dollars, and I prefer
not to compete at all.)

The advantage to having someone host it is that they invite their
friends and neighbors you didn’t previously know who then become
your customers.

I usually bring items in a wide range of prices so that people can
buy little gifts, or splurge on something for themselves.

I always allow the hostess to choose something for herself as payment
for her efforts.

If you don’t want to do it on your own, I googled "jewelry parties"
and found quite a few. Some sell finished jewelry, some offer to
teach the guests to make an item like a simple bracelet, some are
multi-level marketing programs, some involved the guests choosing
the materials for the jewelry, which is then produced somewhere else
and delivered to them.


HI Robin

I do this and I can tell you it’s still a lot of work getting there
and setting up, but the wide circle of customers keeps growing as you
expose your jewelry to different circles of friends in "the buying"
mood! Wine & cheese events or dessert and coffee, it’s a fun way for
people (groups of friends) to get together for a “girls” night out.
They love it. There’s a great web site

that offers all kinds of tips for doing this and many other things…
good luck, I’ve never had it NOT be worth the preparation… just
encourage your hostess to invite twice as many people as she hopes
will show up, there’ll always be no shows… offer incentives… etc,
you’ll find lots of ideas on the website I mentioned.

Good luck and have fun with it.