I am sharing some photos of the amazing White Party held at Pier Wisconsin as a celebration for all the Lia Sophia consultants etc. who attended Conference this year. We were given the celebrity treatment by the company and the Kiam family. Delicious food catered by the Bartolotti's who own the Lake Park Bistro, waiters with delicious appetizers and sweets, jugglers, a red carpet with backdrops for photo ops, a piece of jewelry in a white leather pouch embossed with the logo, (the third piece we received, woohoo) an aquarium, a kareoke lounge, fireworks over Lake Michigan, a projection screen on the pier showing the new line of jewelry, a sea of white, all reserved for us! (all 4000 attendees!)
The photos below are a few of the many I had taken that evening and Wednesday morning when we left the delightful city of Milwaukee. I won't narrate each photo because I wanted to talk about something else today.
I was reading a post from Emom, who is ever thoughtful, about authenticity, and realized that I have been having a problem reconciling this new business with my true arts and crafts personality. I have been struggling with this from the beginning, especially when friends and family would say "Why do you want to do those parties, just sell your work to make money" or "No one wants to have those parties and nobody will show up." A few authentic realities in my life right now are that without an income for the past year around Frippery farmhouse, I need to make some money, now, and I truly do love the jewelry and have fun sharing it. I would love to have a business based on selling repurposed junk, paintings, and handmade pieces but the reality is the time involved sometimes takes away much of the profit. It is my dream but not my reality at the moment.
I am learning to deal with the negativity and am finding it easier to make those phone calls and book those parties. What I have realized is that there are also people out there who love the jewelry and can't wait for the new catalog to book another party. Fashionistas who recognize the quality and reasonable price. There are women too, looking for a lifeline to extra income because things are getting desperate in there own lives as I was when this opportunity was extended to me. This is how I am helping to get us through some difficult times. People say why not find a job at a department or clothing store. I have to ask, will I be selling a product that can be returned for the same piece or same amount of credit 5 years or longer down the road if something happens to it? Can I meet the family that owns the business in person and see the dedication they have to making their employees happy? (Sometimes yes, I know)
Can I make over $30.00 an hour working part time? Can I be rewarded for my efforts with bonuses in cash and jewelry every month? Will they send me and my husband on all expenses paid vacations to places like Cancun or Puerto Rico every year for meeting my goals? Could I leave my job for a family emergency for weeks or months and come back in the same position at the same pay? Can I invest a very small amount of money (Less than $150.00) and own my own business, set my own hours and make of it whatever I want? Find me that retail position and I will sign up. This is my source of income and I shouldn't have to apologize for it because I am still an artist and craftswoman as well. I may have had to put that part of me on hold for a bit while I attend to making an income but that doesn't mean I have given up that part of myself.
Direct sales may not be the answer for everyone but this company has helped us to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I can still live my art dreams but I have also found another dream and at the moment this is the one I have to concentrate on persuing. (Insert little known fact: Only 6% of women in the U.S.A. make over $100,000 a year and over 80% of those are in direct sales!) I don't expect to reach quite that high since I still need to take time to create but if this dream can fund all my others then I will take a shot at it.
I haven't been visiting and commenting on all my favorite blogs lately and I am sorry. I have just been caught up in life. I do want to concentrate a bit on my Green Weekends links and get busy in the studio as well. This won't be a blog about selling, I just wanted to work some things out for myself and sometimes bouncing it off you, my friends, helps me get perspective.
I am still here, still me, the authentic me, but out of necessity I have found a somewhat new path that also needs my attention. I am hoping to combine the two paths to make a life that is happy and fulfilling. Isn't that what everyone wants?
I almost neglected to mention one of the best parts of this new business, the women I have met! I have connected with so many kind, funny, successful and supportive women all pursuing the same goal, happiness. They may each want different things from their businesses but I haven't met a single one in this company who isn't willing to lend a hand to the rest, in advice, in mentoring, in listening or just in comraderie. Plus they all look fabulous in their jewelry, tee hee!
Now that I have bored you to tears with all of this, I will be back to posting more about art and decorating and junk and crafts but I may throw a little bit of jewelry in here and there, so humor me.
Blog hopping is on my schedule for these sweltering afternoons too. It is to hot to even swim!
Thanks for being there in Blogland, it helps to put these thoughts out into the universe and see what comes back.
Have a Wednesday of wishes come true, P.