It is this vision, this ex cathedra specter of the perfect application of your skills and materials that becomes a juggernaut of activity. It moves and breathes from your mind to your heart, and finally to the very tips of your fingers. The power of creation that God gave you blooms fully and completely until...until it spins itself, beautiful and whole out of your sliced and bleeding fingers, leaves you with the joyful emptiness and fatigue-stricken body of a mother after childbirth. And then...you see someone wearing a department store knock off of your vision, a twisted and abhorrent doppleganger of your talent smashed together by soulless machines, it's uniqueness and beauty whored out for the masses at 3 times the price. Your labor of love has been stolen, drugged and pimped out till it's not special any more.
It's a sad thing, but it happens more often than many artisans realize. Just this weekend passed, I visited a few relatives of mine and found that one of them had bought, for $20+ a bracelet that I could have made for 5 dollars, or less. I had all the materials in my bead box, working fingers and more than enough time to complete it for her. Yet, it must have seemed more convenient for her to buy it while she was out shopping. I didn't dwell on it for long, but it did hurt me.
I vowed that instead of allowing myself to get depressed over it, I would do some scouting at these high end department stores that everyone raves about. It was partly to make myself feel better and partly for product forecasting research. It was my plan, actually, to rip off their designs and sell them for half the price. I'd even planned to use it as a means of advertising. Hey! I made the same crap as NORDSTROM but I'll let you have it for $10 instead of $50.
I visited their websites, looked at all they had to offer and realized that my stuff was far less expensive and... THE SAME or better than theirs. It jarred me. In a good way. Instead of continuing to be sad because they had product that was beyond my scope, I was heartened. The song 'anything you can do I can do better' played through my head and I posted some more things on my Etsy. Suck it Nordstrom. You and your 25 dollar bow and pearl earrings.
|Nordstrom's Pearl Drops for $25|
|My Bow Dangles Earrings for $12|