It will happen sooner or later, you are making your jewellery, people find out about it and then you’ll be getting requests to participate in a fund raiser, or organise a fingerprint party for friends and then you’ll be making pieces away from your own studio. You could also decide to be at a market or a school fair and might have to travel to and from the venue.
At home you never face the problems you might encounter when working elsewhere, inside, or potentially even worse, outdoors. It is vital to have a clear understanding of where you will be working before you get there, you will need to plan ahead to have the right things on hand on the day.
You can’t always control what happens!
Imagine if you were working at an outdoor market, the weather conditions can play havoc!
- If it is sunny, you’ll need to have at least a shaded area where you work with the Metal Clay, or better, enough shade to keep you cool as well.
- If it is windy you will have to plan some sort of wind free area, this will need to be solid enough to withstand strong breezes, you don’t want to have your windbreak fall over and land on your work!
- If sudden rain appears make sure you have plastic boxes on hand to keep the impressed Metal Clay pieces safe.
Keep your jewelry safe from thieves
Another thing to keep in mind when working markets or fairs is to have your valuables secure at all times. If you have to leave your booth for a little while, have someone there that you can trust to look after your space for you.
- Your cash box should be periodically checked and excess cash removed and put in your wallet, which you should keep on you at all times.
- Make sure to take care of the Metal Clay pieces and stock clay you have with you, these materials are very expensive and a box is easily taken.
Transporting the impressed clay safely
Moving pieces with a finger impression back home needs special consideration. This is best planned ahead as well, and a system should be set up to take a finger print, cut the shape and put the piece away in a manner that will keep it safe while it’s being transported when you go home.
There are a few options, look at how each one would work for you, after you get a finger impression and cut the shape:
- You could leave the pieces as they are and let them dry as you go: dry pieces are far less vulnerable to damage than fresh work.
- You can have the impressed pieces in a plastic box that would keep them moist: Moist pieces are easier to alter if need be.
It all depends on how far you have to travel after the event and how you prefer to work.
In both cases you should have a system to keep the pieces safe if you have to stack them, with their customer information attached.
Here’s what you can do
One way is to take plastic coated playing cards to put the freshly cut piece on, then have cardboard strips glued on another card, to be placed on top.
A more solid setup would be to make a similar system yourself, here’s how to go about it:
- Start with a piece of sturdy 2 – 3 mm cardboard and cover it with school book self adhesive plastic, picture framer’s mat board works perfectly for this.
- Cut into small pieces a minimum of 7.5 cm (3 inch) square, half will be base board, the other half tops.
- Cut some 1.5 mm (½ inch) strips from another piece of the same material, you’ll need 4 strips for each base board
- Cut these to fit around the edges of the baseboard and glue in place
- Cover the whole base with self adhesive plastic, like you’d use to cover school books, pushing the plastic into the corners
- Have some elastic bands that will securely hold the ‘sandwich’ together and at the same time keep your order form, with the customer’s details, in the same parcel.