Sunday, December 14

Fifty-eight degrees and 58$

I know I already posted today, but I just got back from a craft fair in Laguna called, Sawdust. I'm walking around in a t-shirt and jeans thinking I'm completely normal, and I look around and everyone is wearing sweaters, or some form of an actual winter coat. Some warmed their chilly little necks with scarves. I didn't realize it was cold out until people started telling me. No fewer than five people asked me how I could stand being in a t-shirt. Wasn't I freezing? So I kept telling them I'm from New Hampshire, which seemed to help them understand, but one person finally says to me, well okay. But that doesn't change the fact that it's 58 degrees out. I'm just like . . . uhm, that seems pretty warm to me. Fifty-eight degrees? Are they kidding? I don't even think we pull our winter jackets out until it gets down in the high thirties.

So this was a little shocking. Pottery is not, at least in this area, valued the same as it is on the East Coast. Stunned is the best word to describe my reaction to the prices. You'd have to have seen it to believe it. I finally had a conversation with this one pottter and we talked about it. She said most potters who do mainly functional work don't do well there. That the things that sell the best are things that will be used for decoration. The first pot I picked up and saw the price of was a ten dollar coffee mug. This is at a relatively high end craft fair. Large Raku pots with lids and such, around 58$. Crystalline pots, with cut altered rims for around 18$. I could go on and on. I just could not believe it. So I guess those of us who live on the East Coast have a new reason to appreciate our area. A lower cost of living, and we can sell our work for more. That's not to say I haven't walked into a couple of "art" galleries and seen way overpriced pots, but for the average gal selling the average type pot, I think I'm in a better place.


Brian said...

I know what you mean...
I used to get the same reaction after we moved to NC. 40F was light jacket weather to me, but everyone else had their winter coats on!

I'd never have imagined that pottery would be so under priced/undervalued in CA. They must not have much left over after paying for their $4M homes.

cookingwithgas said...

We found the same thing when we were there over 10 years ago. Lots of glass and paintings, but not much in the way of pots.
There is a great pottery co-op in Berkley. But- a lot of those potters drive a long ways to sell pots.
enjoy the weather!

Linda Starr said...

Could these prices have something to do with the economy and people needing money and thus lowering their prices? I noticed at the last two shows I was at, folks were purchasing smaller, lesser priced items. Although Meredith above says it was the same 10 years ago too. I guess selling on the internet might be a better way to go for those on the West Coast. Hope you're having a great time, nice shots of the ocean, what a great place to vacation.