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Old 02-25-2019, 12:12 PM
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Pete VanderLaan Pete VanderLaan is offline
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So, who actually did the shows? How was it?

This maybe the first year I can recall absolutely zero fanfare about the show season. I actually no longer know which ones still exist and when they are pitted against each other.

So who did what? What were sales like?
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Old 02-25-2019, 06:34 PM
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I did the Philly show.... picked up a few nice new accounts. Total sales down 20%. Buyers are disappearing faster than ever and it seems that the younger store owners, if there are any, are not shopping the traditional shows. The trade show model is not the only avenue to use anymore. You have to use scatter-shot instead of the silver bullet of the 80s....
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Old 02-25-2019, 06:45 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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I put a rubber turd in everyoneís booths... it was the highlight of the show 😂😂
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Old 02-25-2019, 08:02 PM
Art Freas Art Freas is offline
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Need photographic proof on that
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Old 02-26-2019, 05:30 PM
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Well, OK what are the alternatives?

When I was doing shows, I wanted to keep my show costs at about 12% and no more, so a show needed to cost under about 14K including entry fees and time away from the studios. That went all to hell about fifteen years back as the gross sales collapsed and the shows would pull maybe 25K as opposed to 100K+ in the 80's-90's and then there were all these shows competing with each other for your money, your time and the buyers time. Some survived, some didn't but the bottom line was less for everyone.

Costs in shop didn't follow those numbers, so, how is it that people have made it work? Meanwhile the number of shops went up. What do people do?
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Old 02-26-2019, 07:11 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art Freas View Post
Need photographic proof on that
Ta-dah....

https://youtu.be/y1s2dFDUFPw
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Old 02-26-2019, 08:42 PM
Rick Kellner Rick Kellner is online now
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OMG, I'm dying over here! That was hilarious!
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Old 02-27-2019, 11:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
Well, OK what are the alternatives?

When I was doing shows, I wanted to keep my show costs at about 12% and no more, so a show needed to cost under about 14K including entry fees and time away from the studios. That went all to hell about fifteen years back as the gross sales collapsed and the shows would pull maybe 25K as opposed to 100K+ in the 80's-90's and then there were all these shows competing with each other for your money, your time and the buyers time. Some survived, some didn't but the bottom line was less for everyone.

Costs in shop didn't follow those numbers, so, how is it that people have made it work? Meanwhile the number of shops went up. What do people do?
You make it work by diversifying..... the wholesale show model does not work anymore as the only source of income. There really are not the big three that used to dominate the market. They are still here, but do not draw the numbers needed to survive. Times change, buying habits change, demographics change. I'm swimming as fast as I can....
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Old 02-27-2019, 11:42 AM
Art Freas Art Freas is offline
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Awesome! Were there any notable reactions?
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Old 02-27-2019, 12:42 PM
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I'm just surprised at how fast this can change Mark. Between 50% wholesale discounts, upwards of 20% costs on doing shows or fees plus rising studio costs like gas, electricity, blah blah blah..or from such outlets as those things similar to Artful Home, it looks really ugly as something to try to do.

When I was actively working fifteen years back , I needed to make a minimum of 1,000 per day wholesale to make it work and I needed a market for that as well. So, we had the Santa Fe gallery on Canyon Road with a retail outlet. That was lucrative but it took an exhaustive amount of work to pull that off. There were seven employees. I'm having trouble seeing how the nut gets cracked each month.
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Old 02-27-2019, 03:12 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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Awesome! Were there any notable reactions?
Oh yes. .....
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Old 02-27-2019, 03:14 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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Originally Posted by Mark Rosenbaum View Post
You make it work by diversifying..... the wholesale show model does not work anymore as the only source of income. There really are not the big three that used to dominate the market. They are still here, but do not draw the numbers needed to survive. Times change, buying habits change, demographics change. I'm swimming as fast as I can....
Couldnít agree more.

To succeed you have to wear multiple hats. Itís making me very tired and a little pissed off but you know what they say... I donít care. I just want to blow glass.
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Old 02-27-2019, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete VanderLaan View Post
I'm just surprised at how fast this can change Mark. Between 50% wholesale discounts, upwards of 20% costs on doing shows or fees plus rising studio costs like gas, electricity, blah blah blah..or from such outlets as those things similar to Artful Home, it looks really ugly as something to try to do.

When I was actively working fifteen years back , I needed to make a minimum of 1,000 per day wholesale to make it work and I needed a market for that as well. So, we had the Santa Fe gallery on Canyon Road with a retail outlet. That was lucrative but it took an exhaustive amount of work to pull that off. There were seven employees. I'm having trouble seeing how the nut gets cracked each month.
It started to really go downhill 5 years ago when Wendy pulled out of Philly and Nancy filled that void with ACRE. That split the strongest of the wholesale outlets. ACC has been going downhill for a few years and cut back to 1 wholesale day. FWIH, the wholesale was weak this year, but the retail was strong. Each large Gift show also is trying to move in by adding a Handmade section which further cuts in to the buyer pie. With Amazon siphoning off buyers and retail customers, the future looks bleak..... and don't even get me started about free shipping!!!!
I am so glad that I am not starting out trying to build a business now.....
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Old 02-27-2019, 04:09 PM
Eben Horton Eben Horton is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Rosenbaum View Post
It started to really go downhill 5 years ago when Wendy pulled out of Philly and Nancy filled that void with ACRE. That split the strongest of the wholesale outlets. ACC has been going downhill for a few years and cut back to 1 wholesale day. FWIH, the wholesale was weak this year, but the retail was strong. Each large Gift show also is trying to move in by adding a Handmade section which further cuts in to the buyer pie. With Amazon siphoning off buyers and retail customers, the future looks bleak..... and don't even get me started about free shipping!!!!
I am so glad that I am not starting out trying to build a business now.....
Free shipping you say?
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Old 02-27-2019, 05:19 PM
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Pete VanderLaan Pete VanderLaan is offline
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Every percent comes off of your bottom line. I've given the basic raw cuts if they still hold. The question is what is left and then, is the volume sufficient enough to justify the discounting?

Again, I'm 68-69 now and most of my work involved work that sold for a minimum of $200.00 max with the bulk being about $500.00 max- wholesale. It was not hacked out. The competition was very real in that price range.

For the most part, we were friends since the pool was large.

Now, I sense the pool is getting really small and the price points have just collapsed. In my own stuff, here in the New Hampshire League, the retail point that sells is around $90 bucks. It's not the stuff of growing a family, it's the stuff of doing the entire opposite.

Right now? I'm chunking out these small pieces around $140 retail or less all consigned. I don't make a lot but I can tell you I don't think they pay the propane bill and that doesn't cover terrible electric rates or fundamentals. I consider shutting it off but both of us love the rhythm of having a studio. The sound of a furnace is a living breathing thing. I don't want to let it go but I would have to if I hadn't put money away. .Teaching dumb stuff is nothing more than training your future competition.
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Old 02-27-2019, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eben Horton View Post
Couldnít agree more.

To succeed you have to wear multiple hats. Itís making me very tired and a little pissed off but you know what they say... I donít care. I just want to blow glass.
******
You are involved in vertical integration which is what we did. Buy your building as soon as you can or it will swamp you.
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Old 02-27-2019, 07:47 PM
Art Freas Art Freas is offline
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It really helps our shop to have a mixed business model. We do teaching, commissions, teaching, events, and production. There is a rhythm to it for us in that we generally do only two of these concurrently. As people are moving from merchandise to experience our events have become more popular and in store sales less. But is evens out. There are compromises to this but in general we have been OK with it. Also our physical location rewards this mixed model. If I was out isolated somewhere the model would be way less mixed and I would be far more dependent on production. In many ways I look at some aspects of the model as hedging risk of other aspects. As for training future competition I haven't seen that. Only one person that has taken classes has developed in to anything approaching competition but they are pretty far away and developing their own local market.

My only wishes for the shop would be:
More space
More vertical space
Dedicated building for more equipment (color pots, furnace for making color)
UPS and Generator
Rollup doors for walls in the hot shop.
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Old 02-27-2019, 08:23 PM
Ron Mynatt Ron Mynatt is offline
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Sales were down, but a lot of our current buyers had already placed orders on the Indieme website, so it might not be as bad as I first thought.The website has been good .We have picked up about 7 new galleries from the west coast since Dec.They don't make back east, they say it cost too much. Keeping cost low is what I do to make up for fewer orders.I did see the Eben's rubber dog crap so it was there.
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Old 02-28-2019, 07:33 AM
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Pete VanderLaan Pete VanderLaan is offline
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So, sales never seem to really be up. What are the costs of doing a show now compared to 2005 or so. It used to be that a space cost about $1,200-1500 bucks , the hotel around $1000 for a week. Shipping- $750 and up.

In my hayday doing that, it grossed $100K but could do only $65K. By the time I stopped looking at shows, it was down to around $22-25 which I viewed as awful. Is my recollection typical?
We went to having our own gallery in 1995 and that saved the shop in the end game. I imagine that if we had kept the shop as late as the downturn in 2007-8, that the thing would have collapsed.

It's odd because it feels like the original show structure allowed you access to a market, particularly if you had a rural location which we clearly did in Santa Fe in 1970. Rhinebeck and Baltimore opened up worlds and made it easy but there were only 350 of us making and selling glass in the mid seventies. Now, what I think I'm hearing is that the model is reversed and that creating a local scene is the only way you would survive. The show doesn't have the same impact , or if it does, it's because you spend your life on the road doing small venues. Is that accurate?
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Old 02-28-2019, 05:18 PM
Chris Lowry Chris Lowry is offline
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Just a thought... are sales going down or are the numbers of shows and glass artist just thinning the numbers?
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