The character Al Bundy from the popular white trash sitcom Married with Children, would frequently relive his glory days of his high school football career. His family would roll their eyes as he would drift off reminiscing the highlights of when he scored 4 touchdowns in one game. I frequently pull what Josh calls "an Al Bundy" when I talk about the great things I used to have time to do. Don't we all?
So as the holidays approach, I thought I'd pull an Al Bundy and share with you my crafty days in NYC when I would rent a table at the Fall Festival and sell my goods. The Fall Festival was held in a beautiful church on the upper east side just before the holidays and was always packed. Each year I tried to make something different, but soon stuck with the few hot sellers until the trend died out. My company name was Peeme & Chama, named after imaginary friends my sister and I shared. Here are a few shots of my glory days:
The idea was that you would choose your cordage and charms. I would assemble on the spot and of course gift wrap was included. Not a great seller. I learned that people don't really like to make-their-own anything when trying to get holiday shopping done.
These were actually a good seller. I bought all of the glassware from restaurant supply shops on the Bowery for next to nothing. Profit margin was high since they took no time to paint. People bought sets of wine glasses, salt & pepper shakers, and votive candles. They even ended up being published in one of those cheesy craft magazines you find at the check-out counter at grocery stores.
Preppy BeltsOh my- these were a huge hit. I would get all of my ribbon from a supplier in the garment district who would secretly sell me ribbon another well-known ribbon belt designer had just special ordered. After I had sold out, people were taking orders. I was making belts up until Christmas and would hand deliver them up and down the upper east side. Ribbon key chains are a good way to use up the left overs:
Handbags - My biggest Flop
I first tried to sell these on consignment to stores on Martha's Vineyard. I went door to door down Main Street. Not one store took them. I was pretty crushed. They bombed at the Fall Festival too. Too small for ladies to carry and not cute enough for little girls. Oh well.
Wish Necklaces- My biggest hit
The idea was that each necklace came with a specific wish like good fortune, love, strength...The necklace had no clasp and was tied on. Once the necklace falls off, your wish would come true. What could be easier to make? They consisted of thin thread, a small charm and no clasp! The packing took me longer to assemble than the necklaces themselves.