You’ve got your huge pageant practiced smile on.
You’re feeling enthused and proud of your table presentation and glad you bought those extra battery lit candles and helium balloons.
You are wearing your jewellery range with pride and anticipation and hope that you’ll make at least 5 sales today.
You are excited and ready to rock this craft show!!
A middle aged lady saunters up to the table, you beam at her and radiate approachability, and she looks at your makes, picks them up to observe them closer, and your pulse starts to race at the thought of your first sale of the day.
She calls her friend over, “Here, Sandra, come and have a look at these!” and the dollar signs are practically flashing in front of your eyes.
Your smile never wavers.
Sandra walks over and makes an enticing “oooo” and “ahhhh” at your beautiful hand crafted earrings.
Then you hear her say it.
“I can make these for half the price”
URGH! BOOOF! You’ve been punched in the stomach.
Your face falls and your confidence takes a huge knock.
Suddenly you’re not feeling so confident or excited.
You wonder how you’re going to handle this situation.
Do you say anything? Do you pretend you didn’t hear? You’re shocked and dumbfounded so you stay silent, wringing your hands in anxiety.
Sandra replies “Yes, you’re not wrong, I’m not sure I’d even pay a fiver for them”
It would have been less painful if Sandra had slapped you in the face.
They both walk away, not even taking a moment to look at you and acknowledge there is a person behind the stand who has spent her valued time, energy, money and talent on making these items you so crudely dismissed.
You try to pick yourself up for the rest of the day, but you can’t shake the dejected feeling.
You start to wonder if craft shows are really a good idea. If you have any talent at all. If they’re right and you’re wrong. If you should just forget the whole dream of being a successful jewellery maker.
Your smile for the rest of the day is just a little bit duller.
Is this feeling familiar?
This is an all too common situation crafters and artists find themselves in when attending shows.
And it breaks my heart as I know what it feels like to have a stranger put such a low value on your talents.
It really stings when someone doesn't see your vision and so rudely dismisses you and your business.
But don’t worry. I have a 3 word sentence that will stop the Sandra’s in their tracks and make them think twice.
Next time someone retorts with “I can make that cheaper” or “It’s too expensive”, take a deep breath, put on a huge smile and pleasantly respond with….
“Compared to what?”
Oh I know.
It’s genius isn’t it.
Because you are delightfully calling them out on what they are doing.
They are comparing your makes to the incomparable.
They are comparing your handcrafted lovingly made jewellery to the tat found in cheap high street stores or mass produced items from China.
They are not the same thing!!
It’s like comparing a Michelin star meal to a McDonalds! Or a 25 year old battered Ford to a brand new top of the range Ferrari! Yes ultimately they are the same thing (a meal and a car) but they are worlds apart.
Gosh it makes me so mad!
So, I came up with these simple 3 words as my slightly smug and smart response to when I’m faced with these birdbrained comments.
Take them, adopt them and tweak them to suit you and your style but never feel dejected by someone judging your talents again.
Instead feel empowered, confident and safe in the knowledge that these lunatics are not your ideal customer.
Feel free to move on, Sandras of this world, and make sure you get in touch when you’ve worked out how to make the products for half the price….*pageant style smile with a hint of smugness*