Thursday, July 29, 2010
What is a reseller? This definition varies depending on who you ask. Since this is my blog, you get my version.
To me, a reseller is somebody who goes to the website of mass produced items, say purses, and then buys 5 bags in style A, 10 bags in style B, and so on. Then, once they get the items, they either take a picture of it or use the picture from the website, find a place to sell them, and list them. The problem I have with them is when they list these items on a handmade venue and pass them off as handmade. This is a an outright lie. It is not handmade. Handmade cannot compete with mass produced price wise, either which is another sore point in the handmade community. A lot of people say that supply sellers and vintage sellers fall into this category. I don't think so. Everybody who makes handmade items needs supplies and as long as the seller is not passing their supplies off as handmade, more power to them. The same with vintage. I love vintage stuff and have some vintage books and my vintage glass. As long as they call their stuff what it is, I don't have a problem with it. Just don't try passing off that little red glass vase you bought at the dollar store off as a vintage Cranberry Glass vase.
What are the handmade venues doing about this?
Well, Etsy does not appear to be doing a whole lot about-except changing how they define the subject. They have yet to settle on a fixed definition. It's why my shop is on vacation in Etsyland. It will stay on vacation until the last item expires.
See, on Etsy, you pay .20 per listing, plus a percentage of the sale price as a commission to them-don't forget to add in the paypa fee, either. All costs to be figured in the price of your product and passed along to the consumer. Now if you make handmade purses, you pay Etsy their .20 to list your wonderful creation. If you are lucky, you will be on the front page of E with this new listing for maybe 20 or 30 seconds. If you aren't lucky, you will be buried by a reseller who has just listed 20 or 30 "handmade" purses which will push your honestly listed handmade bag to the back of the bus. All the while Etsy admin. are saying that they are working on coming up with a solution. They are going to allow resellers there-they haven't come right out and stated that yet, but it's obvious. They bring in too much money for Etsy to not allow them. As usual, Etsy does not have a plan.
Artfire has started to deal with the reseller issue by vetting their handmade artisans. I have copied and pasted the application that has to be filled out to be considered for the Certified Handmade Artifact.
Artisans must meet the following pre-requisites before an application for the Certified Handmade Artifact will be accepted:
1. Artisan must be a PRO member of ArtFire for at least 60 days.
2. Artisan must be in good standing with ArtFire.com including
a. No outstanding cases concerning non-delivery of product.
b. No outstanding cases concerning mis-representation of products for sale
c. No outstanding cases concerning other violations of the ArtFire TOU
3. 100% of the items in the Applicants studio must be listed in Handmade or Fine Art. Studios with commercially produced supplies and destash are not eligible. There are two exceptions that can be made. You may list Handmade supplies in the "Supplies >> Handmade Supplies" categories. You are also allowed to have gift certificates to YOUR studio listed in "Media >> Gift Certificates".
4. Artisan studio must be complete and contain sufficient information including:
a. An avatar
b. A banner
c. Complete Studio Policies
d. A Bio with photo
5. Product photographs must be in-focus and of a reasonably sufficient size.
If you feel you meet the above requirements and you would like to submit an application to receive the Certified Handmade Artifact, please answer the following questions in full and send your complete application and photos to email@example.com
What is your ArtFire User name?
What is your main handmade craft, including the Main Category you list your craft in? (I.E. You make hand knit scarves so you list in the “Knitting” main category.) :
Do you list in main categories other than your main craft?
If yes to the above, what other handmade crafts do you create and list on ArtFire? Include the Main Category you list in as well.
Please explain in brief but concise detail your handmade process for each main category craft you list on ArtFire. (I.E.if you make Quilts AND Knitting work. Please explain each of your creative processes separately.)
You must include at least two pictures with your email showing your handmade process. You will need to provide:
• At least one picture of your workspace
• At least one picture of a “work in progress”. (I.E. a scarf that has been half knit but not completed).
You may submit more than two pictures. However we must see at least the two pictures detailed above to be considered for the Certified Handmade Artifact.
I have one-you can see my new widget on the side of my blog. I'm proud of it. I did have to move the Lake Superior Agate Nuggets out of this studio.
Will this cut out the resellers? Probably not. It will let customers know who is handmade and who is not and that's a start. After all, giving the customers a good feeling that they are buying what the seller says they are selling can lead to good customer satisfaction. Not all handmade sellers will have this artifact, though. Some of them want to leave their supplies they are selling off in their studios. Artfire has a monthly fee. There are no listing or final value fees (percentage of sale), so there is no real financial gain for them to have resellers on site listing 100 mass produced purses in one whack. It's a venue for handmade, supplies and cool vintage stuff.
If you want mass produced, go hit a big box store like Wal or K Mart. Be careful what you buy there, though-some of that stuff has cadmium and other dangerous stuff in it.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Bonnie Bartley, aka soapsmith http://www.artfire.com/users/soapsmith makes some really cool and unusual soap. Like this beautiful Ruby Rock soap. I would probably buy it, and love looking at it so much I would never use it. LOL!
If you need a great joke gift for a coworker or neighbor, this Lump Of Coal soap would be perfect.
This beautiful, soothing Lavender Soap comes from http://www.artfire.com/users/YourTime . I love the scent of lavender.
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Here's a beautiful necklace by my friend Emily of Exqusite Studios. http://www.artfire.com/users/ExquisiteStudios
This toddler purse is the perfect gift for the little miss in your life. It's perfect for the little girl who wants to take her posessions with her. It's designed and created by VaBchQuilter.http://www.artfire.com/users/vabeachquilter
The final, but by no means least favorite in this list are these cool glow in the dark Christmas ornaments by BAKidagain. this is only one of 1000 ornament designs available, including many different designs honoring our military men and women. http://www.artfire.com/users/BAKidagain
Monday, July 12, 2010
For all of you crafters, there are supplies on sale. All kinds of supplies from scrapbooking supplies to jewelry making supplies. For you early bird shoppers, there are gifts galore on special. For those of you wantinghandmade Christmas ornaments and decorations, they are there, too.
It's easy to find the sellers who are participating-all you have to do is put TDOCIJ in the ArtFire searchbox and the products will show up. You will be pleasantly surprised at all the goodies.
Thursday, July 8, 2010
First of all, I managed to tear a muscle in my upper left arm. Being left handed, this has not been a picnic. I didn't realize what I had done-thought I could just "walk off" a little strain or something. Couldn't have been more wrong. I'm trying my best to doctor it myself with the help of webmd and google. We don't really have the mega bucks it would take for me to go see a doctor. I've set my beading aside because I know that pulling 20 feet of thread through a bead a ton of times would not be helping my arm get better.
So, how have I been passing the non-beading time you ask.
I have come into new ownership of a wonderful Pentax K-X dslr. I love it. I used to have a Pentax K1000 (back in the days when cameras used film) and the lenses I still have will fit my new camera. So I have been spending non beading time learning to work my new camera. I have re-taken the Lake Superior Agate nugget pictures and a bunch of other pictures topractice. The world of digital photography is a lot different than the 35mm world in a lot of respects. A lot of things are still the same, just different technology and different ways to acheive the same goal-good pictures.
I've also been seriously considering kissing Etsy goodbye. I am so fed up with no views, resellers, others who flagrantly violate the TOU's and the way Etsy treats their sellers. If you sell a ton of stuff there, violate their TOU's to your hearts content. If you don't, or voice your opinion about how admin. there does things, they are randomly likely to shut your shop down. It's gone on long enough and I've had enough. I think Artfire and Zibbet will be giving Etsy a good run for their money and soon. Artfire is a little closer to doing that than zibbet is right now.
That's pretty much the cliff note version of the last month. I left out how outraged and devastated I am over what is happening in the Gulf. Me and a few million others. I will not be this long in blogging again. I got sidetracked with a new camera forum http://www.pentaxforums.com/index.php I am learning a lot there, but am kind of caught up now and it's easy to keep up with it at this point.