Saturday, November 13, 2010

Major Frustration, and Contemplating Closing Up

As I posted on Facebook this morning, I have decided, with a very heavy heart, to withdraw from the Auckland Art & Craft Fair. My current inventory is very low, and I have been waiting for the supplies I’ve ordered from the USA and Hong Kong to arrive. I’ve searched and searched for New Zealand (or even Australian) suppliers, but the very small handful that I’ve found have limited inventory and rather steep prices.

I have had three very frustrating situations with ordering supplies since I have moved back to New Zealand. Firstly, one lot of pendant settings and cabochons I ordered from a US supplier almost four weeks ago still hasn’t arrived. I was hoping to check the quality of these and then order more to make necklaces for the craft fair if I liked them, but it’s too late for that now.

Secondly, I ordered some 20 inch silver snake chains from another supplier on Etsy, only for them to tell me that they didn’t have any in stock, they only had 18 inch chains. I told them I didn’t want the shorter ones, but they didn’t respond and sent them anyway, as I found out when they arrived two weeks later!

Finally, I received one lot of brass charms that I ordered off an Etsy supplier a couple of days ago, and I am very disappointed with them. The photos on the supplier’s Etsy store are lovely, but the actual charms are very lightweight and cheap-feeling, and I’m not happy using them.

It costs too much and takes too long to send the supplies back from NZ to the USA, so not only was it a waste of time and money, I still don’t have the supplies I need. I have been searching frantically for more (using up my limited internet data allowance), but realized I will still have the same problem – the long wait for the supplies to arrive, and the uncertainty of their quality. The craft fair is only four weeks away, thus my decision to withdraw.

These frustrations are also leading me to consider closing up shop entirely. I don’t have the funds to be throwing at supplies that take weeks to get here and may or may not be usable when I can’t feasibly return them. The exchange rate and the cost of postage to have them sent here is also difficult to justify.

I’m so sad and disappointed. I have spent several hundred dollars on the business in the last few weeks. I returned the printer I bought (a miracle, given how difficult it is to return things in New Zealand if you just change your mind, thank you Bond & Bond), so at least that’s $300 back in my bank account (albeit briefly, the dog needs a growth excised from his gum and tested, to the tune of $500…) My regret at returning to New Zealand is mounting.

Anyway, watch this space, since I could well be announcing a closing down sale soon!


  1. Don't close. I'll help you find supplies. Just give me a list of what you need (and specifics) and I'll look and find for you.
    Your work is too lovely to just forget about.
    Don't give up.
    Tell me what you need.
    I know of some good resources for supplies.

  2. NO!!!

    Maybe you could supplement what jewelry you have with some of your adorable paintings??? Also, though you may not like the weight of what came in, customers might like the lighter weight of the metal - I'm wearing a necklace that has a brass metal base and resin casting and it often feels strange to have such weight next to my skin...

    I know these issues are frustrating for you, but don't close up shop just yet! This may just be your opportunity to find some creative solutions. You may not be able to make many sales for the holidays, but once you find great suppliers, I'm sure you'll do great!

  3. Averil, lovely - no! Please don't even consider closing up, your work is just too lovely for it not to be out there... I'm so sorry you've had such a hard time of it and can fully appreciate your frustrations! It is a good decision to withdraw from the craft fair for now... there is always next year and you just need some breathing room and more time for things to come together - which they will. Please persevere...everything will be ok. HUGS xo

  4. Oh Averil, my heart goes out to you my friend.
    I agree with Erin, forget about the fair. Things will work out eventually. :) I get compliments on your jewels every time I wear them, you're amazing. Jennifer is so kind to offer aid in finding suppliers, you've got so much love and support sister. Sending hugs to you. xo

  5. Time, you just need time! You will find the right suppliers and all that you need. Take the pressure off yourself - Rome was not built in a day!

    DO NOT give up. Breathe and trust.

    You are brave and amazing!

  6. Oh what a series of frustrating ordering experiences - which means you are well and truly due some good karma and suppliers. Please don't contemplate closing up, give yourself time and space to rediscover your passion :)

  7. Oh Averil.... how frustrating for you. Can you maybe just take a break from it all for a while and maybe see how you feel in a few months. Have a think about it early next year. It is a really stressful time of the year at the moment.

    Whatever you decide... we will be here to support you. x

  8. Your work is beautiful!! I know the frustration, when we first started we has a few thousand dollars of bad stock that we print on arrive, and it nearly sent us under. But we are still here and I really hope that you can keep yourself going:)

  9. Averil your work is beautiful and unique. Give yourself time to settle and perhaps pick it up again in the new year.

    You really mustn't give in. There are lots of amazing supportive people who are willing to help and support you through this. Just let us know what we can do.

  10. oh don't give up! Just try and find a way, a different, creative way to make your business 'work'. Is there something you could try doing differently, a new approach, an eco way with found materials. Sorry , wild suggestions I know. I just do know what it's like!

    Here's to finding solutions :)