So you want to go pro

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Blog series by odie updated 05-31-2009 04:35 PM 19 parts 39861 reads 113 comments total

Part 1: For now I'm gathering my thoughts

01-05-2008 06:07 AM by odie | 6 comments »

OK boys and girls or OK girls and boys This is my first attempt at a “blog”. I don’t even understand what it is. To start with, it is my first priority to be FUNNY. At my age, if you ask a woman or a man what is the most important thing in a marriage they will say a sense of humor. Those of you 40+ out there know what I mean. So you want to start a business. This hopefully will be a series of do’s and don’ts of starting your own woodworking (((or what ever ((f...

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Part 2: Business Plan or not to Business Plan

01-06-2008 02:07 AM by odie | 3 comments »

Shame on us, we don’t have a business plan. Never did and never will have one. We knew what we wanted to accomplish. Banks and loan institutions insist on you having a business plan. All professional people (lawyers, accountants, and the like) will advise you to have one. I didn’t need a loan to get started, but if you are one that does need a loan, start writing. A bank will want to know that you have all of your ducks in a row. This business plan will be put in front of loan and management ...

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Part 3: Business Person vs Manufacturer

01-06-2008 05:37 PM by odie | 4 comments »

Along the way, we made a very conscience decision to offer our products at prices most people that visited arts and crafts shows could afford. We are both very capable of making the perfect art quality products. You know what I mean, cut around the imperfection instead of putting it on the inside out of sight. Using 10 coats of finish instead of 6. My personal favorite, and the one I use, is to make 10 boxes at once instead of only one. Over half of my time is spent setting up a machine to do...

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Part 4: Photos for Karson and Tom(mot)

01-07-2008 03:54 AM by odie | 9 comments »

O. K. you guys. You say you needed photographs. I really don’t understand. Guys, one is white and one is green. I hope this helps you get a visual. We should get back on topic for #5. I took this picture today. Shameless Promotion:

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Part 5: Becoming Legal

01-08-2008 03:11 AM by odie | 4 comments »

Well, hell, let’s get back to it. First off these entries will be coming sporadically. You need to know we do have a business to run. And it’s tax time. I have started something here that could be way over my head. After all English is like a second language to me. No, no, no, it’s because I attended Los Angeles City Schools, not because I’m an immigrant.Hell, I took dumb bell English many times at Santa Monica City College. So it takes me a little longer to write these than most of you. Than...

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Part 6: Paying Your Way

01-08-2008 11:21 PM by odie | 9 comments »

Well here we go again. Can you be a book keeper? Well, how about a good record keeper? When we started this little endeavor we asked, asked, and asked some more questions. Most of the questions, we asked our friend and tax accountant. He handles many businesses’ taxes and accounting problems in the state of California. I need to point out something here, accountants speak a different language than woodworkers. He was asked such questions as: ”what”, “what did you say”, and “what the hell does...

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Part 7: Pinky Up You Artists

01-10-2008 05:06 PM by odie | 4 comments »

Let me explain this small delay. I work at an art gallery one day a month. You know these places don’t you? People sip their tea with their pinky up in the air there. You lugs would never fit in there LIKE I DO. “You do my ass”, you are to saying to yourself. What tipped you off? My stuff doesn’t hang on a wall? If that doesn’t mean anything to you, start at the beginning of this series. This is an artists’ co-op. Does your community have an artists’ co-op? Admit it, do you even know? This...

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Part 8: I Are A Salesman

01-11-2008 06:47 PM by odie | 7 comments »

Wow, I can’t believe we’ve covered this much ground already. I think I have said about everything I wanted to about wholesale. If any of you lugs have questions about my wholesale experiences ask or forever hold your piece. I will be heading toward the retail side of our business now. The first time I thought of doing retail sales I was very intimidated by the whole process. When you get used to it, it’s a piece of cake. When I speak of retail, I mean the customer (end user of our hard wor...

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Part 9: The Arts and Crafts Show

01-12-2008 06:12 PM by odie | 6 comments »

Ah, the arts and crafts (fair, show, exhibit, event) show. See we are already having a quandary. Some promoters are very choosy as to what you call their events. For this occasion we will call them shows. There are many things that determine which shows one participates in. New shows to you, it must be location and your calendar of events. You have heard the term, “location, location, location”, haven’t you? Believe it … live it. Ask your self, “if I were well off, where would I live...

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Part 10: The Promoter

01-15-2008 06:22 PM by odie | 3 comments »

There has been a lot going on here, so the blog was the one thing that had to be cut back on. We are reaching the end of this topic, so if you have any questions that I might answer, I can add a couple of entries. I have to start turning some bowls to get ready for next summers shows. We touched on promoters in the last entry. Most promoters are frustrated artists that know they can put on a better show than the promoter they are currently with. I work a lot with one of these. But she came...

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Part 11: Ah Gypsies in the Air ?

01-16-2008 03:08 AM by odie | 3 comments »

If you have ever paid close attention to the way an arts and craft show looks, you have to be thinking what a bunch of gypsies. You don’t see the half of it. You should see us when we set up and tear down. I fondly call everyone there a bunch of gypsies and it’s catching on. I will tell you, I have never run across a greater bunch of people in my life. There isn’t any of them that wouldn’t give you the shirt off their backs to help you succeed. But at the same time, I have never run across a ...

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Part 12: You Wanna a Piece of Me ?

01-16-2008 07:10 PM by odie | 3 comments »

I eluded to this earlier. Everyone wants to get rich off of your hard work. You get the raw materials. You create something from the raw materials. A tent and display is bought and set up every time you wish to sell your product. So where does 30% go every time, and right off the top. This 30% is a figure that was arrived at by 5 years of averaging. And more times than not this figure is higher. This amount comes off of your gross sales amount and not your profit. We have always figured th...

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Part 13: "The Price is Right" ?

01-17-2008 08:45 PM by odie | 3 comments »

Well, one more bowl turned and one more blog entry to write. And believe me, this is a good time to write this. It’s 4 degrees outside and 34 degrees in the shop. This topic is coming to a close. There are only a couple left to do I can think of, unless you have questions. Hell, there must be a couple of questions in Turlock. This is a tough topic to tackle. Say that 5 times really quick. Your pricing structure is this entries topic. The first component of any price structure is the cost. ...

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Part 14: The Customer ... Nuff Said

01-18-2008 08:51 PM by odie | 7 comments »

Well, we can’t stop giving shop weather reports can we? It’s 8 degrees outside and it’s 36 degrees in the shop. Damn, it’s a heat wave over yesterday. I do have one more bowl to turn in this round and then it’s on to something else. Just like this blog is about to end unless something pops up that might be interesting to write about. Hey, Bill in Turlock, any questions? Ah, the customer, he is always right you know. At least that’s what we have to keep telling ourselves, over, and over, an...

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Part 15: Ah, the World Wide Web

02-16-2008 03:04 AM by odie | 11 comments »

This topic was a request by daltxguy, and it will probably disappoint him. We left off with the customer the last time around. Well this is sort of related. It’s just a different way to go find that allusive person. Ah yes, the all powerful “web site”. With our web site it’s a work in progress. We use a Mac and a program called “iweb”, designed to enable one to design and publish their own web site. So that’s exactly what we have done. Apple publishes it to the web for $100.00 a year. It h...

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04-22-2008 04:11 PM by odie | 2 comments »

I forgot to bring you all up to date. How you get noticed by Google and Yahoo is called “meta names”. These names are embedded in code in your web site on each page. Google and Yahoo! use crawlers to find and read these meta “tags”. They use them to pick where and in what categories your site is listed. I now have a program that lets me go in and change and add to my “meta names”. The problem, I found out, is that .mac doesn’t allow for this. There...

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Part 17: Ahh ... Steps in the Fool

06-11-2008 03:30 PM by odie | 9 comments »

Hi …. O, an “artist’s” story unfolds …....... Hell done broke loose at North Tahoe Arts. Remember, I told you about that place earlier. It is a non-profit artists association, I’m afraid, run by artists. If you put 20 of them in one room together, they will do nothing but disagree until they are all unconscious from bitch slapping each other. I’m a Tim Taylor Tool Man kind of guy. These people are unreal. Remember my phrase “common sense isn’t so common”? Well it really applie...

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Part 18: Artistic Melodrama

06-12-2008 05:16 PM by odie | 4 comments »

I thought this topic was exhausted many moons ago. As a “pro”, little things pop up, that need our attention from time to time. Now that my life is, for the most part, mine again, I have time to conclude our little melodrama. We left off with me as acting, temporary, until the job was done … chairman of the North Tahoe Arts Artisan’s Gift Shop. That’s a mouth full. For the two weeks proceeding the meeting I organized the agenda from the last meeting. I shortened it from 14 pages to 2...

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Part 19: Did I Mention Home Sales are Great ?

05-31-2009 04:35 PM by odie | 16 comments »

First I’ll have to give an update about the “artistic melodrama”. There is no more melodrama, at least in my life. I’m gone … I quit … walked out … packed up my art (boxes) and left ! It got so bad last November dealing with all those artists, not even an accomplished LumberJock could handle it. At least not this one. As soon as they got comfortable with me as their leader, things went all wrong. I had a few people trying to get away with breaking the rules behind my back, a...

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