Friday, January 27, 2023

Pom Poms of Encouragement


As a new weaver I felt all at sea when it came to so many things.  But I had something not every young weaver has - a local guild of very supportive members.

This morning I was emailing with someone and found myself being able to - hopefully - shake the pom poms of encouragement.

One of the things I mentioned was that if they want to sell online, they need to have really good photos.  That the photos needed to convey something of the character of the cloth, because people largely buy textiles by *feeling* them.

Now, I'm no expert photographer, but over the years I've learned a few things and while my photos are absolutely NOT works of art, I do try hard to let the cloth speak for itself.

Mostly my online sales are to other weavers.  Most of them have either seen my textiles in real life at a conference or class, but some buy on my reputation.

I've been weaving for about 4 decades, consistently attending local craft fairs and let's say I have a bit of a 'name' in this town.  For persistence, if nothing else.

When I had my first 'big' health issue, I began gifting my health care providers with my textiles.  The internist who saw me in emerg and, more importantly *believed* me, didn't whiff me away with 'oh you are just having a panic attack' and literally saved my life by arranging a stress test, got tea towels with hearts woven in.

These ones, in fact, shown still in the loom.

Since then, the rest of my health care workers have gotten textiles, including the infusion room at the cancer clinic.

But also?  My hair dresser.

In December I gave her a scarf, and when I went yesterday to get 'shorn' she commented that she had been showing her friends the scarf.  "Wow, did your client buy a Laura Fry scarf for you????"

"No!  My client IS Laura Fry!"

Weaving is one of those crafts that are 'so long to learn', and figuring out how to sell your hand wovens can take a long time, too.

I don't have any magic bullet solutions about how to make it all work for someone.  Took me long enough!  But along the way I had other weavers shaking the pom poms of encouragement.  When I mentioned to one of them I couldn't afford to pay them for all the advice they had given me, the response was 'help someone else'.

I took that to heart, so I try to help others, as best I can.  Not to tell them what to do, because what worked for me 40 years ago probably won't work for someone just starting out now.  

But I also finally got a new listing loaded to my ko-fi shop    in part because I wanted to share an example of how I photograph my textiles for online.  Two birds and all that.

I hope to get one new design uploaded each week and will delete older designs to keep things manageable (for me).

1 comment:

Jane McLellan said...

Love the hairdresser story.