On the Other Hand

"Pricey.", the comment hit me like a slap across the face. "Well, everything's individually hand made", I defended. She had been referring to a pair of $25 custom caned hoop earrings with sterling silver findings and a keychain with a focal bead of an intricate Celtic Knot cane for the same amount. "Hmfff," was her reply as she bid me farewell and was on her way. Granted the Harvest Fair was more about family fun on an autumn day than it was about vendors selling high quality handcrafted items – but that remark was uncalled for. Didn't she realize that each cane is custom made – the more complex ones taking days of work? Didn't she know that once the cane is made then the bead is built — which once baked, I prefer to sand with three different grits of sandpaper and then buff to a high sheen? Was she getting the fact that at that point the bead still had to be carefully assembled with the highest quality findings to create the finished product? Did she realize that there are other costs involved like show fees and tables and tents and gas and credit card machine leases and... Why bother? Although I know how much work goes into each piece – not to mention the hidden costs associated with running a small business – it's quite clear she didn't. Then again that's why there are juried craft shows. The clientele expects high standards of work and is willing to pay the price for it. 

But let me just say for that one sour apple there were plenty of others who had great things to say. Isn't funny how those comments can get stuck in your craw. What is a craw anyway? Pin It


Roberta said...

Most people do not realize how much work, thought, imagination, creativity etc goes into an artists work.

Even my own husband is sometimes guilty of it. Recently at the MFA there was a piece by Anne Truit that was simple yet beautiful. My husband said "I could do that!" I couldn't believe it. I just said, "but you didn't" and left it at that.

Sigh, how we suffer for our art.......

Boston Baked Beads said...

That's funny Roberta - Your own husband! When doing things by hand even making a round ball of clay is an art. Ever try and do that - and make it absolutely perfect - with no tools? It's near impossible.