Projects countdown - July

Hi everyone!

I hope you are enjoying your week! Here in Montreal we are having a second heat wave and let me tell you that it is abnormally hot at Kirameku headquarters.

Last weekend though we escaped the heat and went picking up raspberries and blueberries in a field. And like an idiot I forgot to bring my phone with me and take pictures of the lovely scenery... My apologies everyone, I'm working hard to always think about my smart phone and sending you news on the spot. But let me tell you the freezer is full of yummy berries to keep me inspired and healthy until next summer.

That being said, I promised you a final picture of the geisha artwork and I think you guys have waited long enough! So here she is! Isn't she beautiful? I'm really happy to see how she turned out even with the minimum of colors involved in that artwork.

That else does Kirameku has on it's plate? An actual lot! I've ordered some paper samples as I want to find a special way to make unique gift tags for all my Christmas orders. I've also been translating - slowly but surely - my entire Etsy shop in French. Between working full time, making new items and working on my future craft shows I hope to have translated all 75 items by November, as the shop policies and about page are finally finished.

I'm also working on special items for my craft shows and I'm currently shopping for some new colors. This part is always tricky since there's always soooo many lovely colors and shades but I really must narrow down my choices otherwise I would end up buying way too much. If ever you'd like to see something added at Kirameku, now is the time to make your special requests! :)

I'll leave you on this new idea I had at the end of last year. Kirameku wants to support small businesses as well and has added a supplier that handmades all her glass drops. Can you guess which berries in our limited editions are made with her drops? :)

On this everyone, I have to run. I hope you'll all have a lovely night and weekend! :)



Ok, lets talk about prices

Hi everyone! :)

I don't know if you have heard but Etsy is launching a big event in Canada for September yay! I'm so excited about this event and I find the concept absolutely awesome!! Quickly for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about : Etsy Canada is having a massive event on September 27. There will be Etsy craft show hosted throughout Canada. I'm so glad Etsy Canada is making more events I think it is time that we get to know more about Etsy up here. As you can imagine I applied to the fair and I'm anxiously waiting for the answer as my application is getting reviewed. After 5 years on Etsy I just couldn't wait to be part of their event...!

It will be a bit weird for me as usually none of my customers in craft shows have heard from Kirameku before, and not a lot of them know about Etsy. I was super lucky and once met another crafter that had already purchased from my online store. I was so happy to meet her in person and get to know her! Unfortunately, that was a one time thing over the 3 years I've been attending craft shows.

Here's my latest addition! The Canary Berry Ring

I know this is a big intro for this post but I believe it gives you the right context. Bottom line is : now with the Etsy fair I hope it will be the opposite situation and that the people who will attend will have heard from my shop at least a little bit. And if you know my products from my online shop you might be surprised about the difference in prices. I really wanted to take a minute and elaborate on that part, after all it is the same product. For example the rainbow berry ring is sold online for 13.75USD$ (about 15CAN$) and it so sold at a fair for 11USD$ (12CAN$). The difference in USD$ isn't much but it is in CAN$ - well in my opinion at least.

I agree with you there's a price gap. Thing is, I spend 80% of Kirameku's time on Etsy and about 20% on craft shows. That means a bit less time marketing and less supplies for the show compared to all the expenses surrounding my Etsy shop. Also, there's no shipping costs and that allows me to cut down my prices. But one of the main factor is that there is no resin on most of my rings at a fair. This way, I was able more than once to accommodate my customers at the fair and unstrung the beads to transform my last piece of a limited edition ring into a custom necklace. Although I sell mostly rings, I have about 40% of my customers at fair who would rather purchase a necklace instead of a ring. I try to make necklaces in colors I believe my customers would like, to the best of my knowledge, but there are soooo many colors available it is not possible for me to make as many necklaces as rings simply because I don't have enough time. There's more resin at the back of the necklace and with the drying time, first thing you know two days went by.

But why add resin on the rings you might say? I find it helps keeping the beads together in a more "sturdy" shape rather than having a bit of "loose" between the teardrop beads. But even without the resin there's no worries about the solidity. I personally wore a peacock ring without resin non stop for a year and everything stayed in place as it was supposed to be. I eventually had to put the ring down as I had a contract job to clean and file a sample room and it was too risky to get the ring stuck somewhere and break it. The berries rings are not made for massive packing, after all they are made out of glass beads. I then decided to switch to the necklace version of the berries as it was more convenient for me.

Well then I think that sums it up pretty well! I hope I have enlighten you on my process and that you now have a better idea of the making process. I will definitely be back to give you some updates on the Etsy craft shows and my exclusive items for that fair. Meanwhile if there is anything you would like me to make for that particular show or if you have any questions, please don't hesitate. On this, have a lovely end of week everyone! :)



So, how was it?

Hi everyone! ;)

I hope you all had a great weekend! Here I've been swamped catching up on the short weekend I had because of the fair. Are you curious to know how it went?

We got to Venise en Quebec on time despite a little accident I had in the morning (orange juice on my white shirt the minute I got in the car….. my kind of luck) Everything went as planned, or almost. The organizers were super nice and the fair was set up very nicely. It was a tiny fair but there was still a small "coffee shop" table if I may say were we could fill up on a few snacks and drinks. We had unusual freezing temperature for this time in July but by early in the afternoon the sun was up and burning, and our bottle of water became our best friend.

I must admit we had fewer visitors than I expected - it was a small fair after all - but the fact that it was something that was going on every Saturday of summer and the many years it has been going on was an aspect I relied too much on I believe. I could not have the information on how many visitors they had last year and I thought it would be something difficult to evaluate too since the fair is spread on nine weeks. I had a chance to test some new adjustments I had made on my displays and I was quite happy to see it was working really well. Although I'll still make some more updates for my future fairs this year like in Henryville. Unfortunately I had no place to hang my lovely new banner from Vista print, I Was so hoping to try it out last week-end! Oh well, another time then ;)

But you say, how did you find the outdoor experience? Well as much as I love summer and outdoors I can't say I really enjoyed that part of the show. The fair was on the yard or the church with a big and solid tent and looked quite nice. But fighting with insects flying and crawling on my table, the concentrated heat inside the tent was no fun part for me but I could cope with it. What really made the balance shift is when the wind started to blow in the middle of the afternoon. It was a storm wind and by the time the fair ended we were afraid to be caught in that storm. I had to be extra careful all afternoon as the wind flew over my table and threatened my watercolors that were on display on various small easels. Needless to say I had to put the artwork flat on the table to prevent them to fly around and get damaged. Thank God the cardboards I put behind them helped them stay on the table because of the weight. So unfortunately I wasn't able to take as much picture of the fair that I would have liked but I've shared in this article all that I have.

Lessons for the other craft shows? Always bring a change of clothes you never know what can happen. Also, research the fair and get to know the number of visitors they had the year before. I know there are many articles on the web that stress the importance of this part and I totally agree but in this case I was invited to the fair. It wasn't the first time I was invited to a show and I had as many wonderful and not so good fairs this way, so I decided to leave it up to chance this time. No more outdoor fairs for me as the wind also brought dust all over my display and I spent an awefull lot of time cleaning everything when I got back home.

But I'm happy to say despite everything I met some lovely new artisans and say some familiar faces too, it was great to catch up with them and see what they had new. I had overall a nice experience and I can't wait for my other fairs...! :) And obviously, I'll share know all the juicy details! :)

On this everyone have a great day!!

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