Lessons Learned from the Sale
First, I am so thankful for chance to be at this show. The Handmade Market is huge and well run, and getting a table can be very competitive. The Handmaidens are so professional and talented, and the day seemed to go off without a hitch. For me, the show went mostly well. I don't think people were at the show to drop a lot of cash, but I managed to turn out a little profit and sell around twelve pieces. Of course, in my ideal world, people would have been fist-fighting each other for a chance to buy my pottery, perhaps without the violence.
It is difficult to predict what will sell well at each show. For instance, in the past, my bud vases and bottles tended to be overlooked for the medium-sized bowls, but this time, hardly any bowls sold and the bottles were a big hit. I think shows around the holidays cater to people buying gifts, so a small vase is a little more giftable than a serving bowl that may or may not match the recipients dining style. The very first show I did was in the spring season, and people were buying more for themselves. A seasoned potter probably is much better at predicting all this.
However, the bottom line is that people want mugs. The fact that I don't make mugs puts me at a sharp disadvantage to the other potters. I think it's time to buck up and design a mug. There are several I've seen that are handle-less, which may be a route I'll pursue if I find an attractive shape. I don't mind doing handles, but they are such a subjective things. Should there be room for three fingers, four? Should they let the user keep their knuckles off the side of the mug or should they keep the hand snug to the side? If the side were thick enough, then the mug wouldn't be too hot to hold and would excellent for warming the hands in the winter.
So, a question for my readers and especially hot liquid drinkers: What is your ideal mug? If you have a link to a picture, please post it.