Consignment and coops RE: [SCA-AE] RE SCA Merchanting.
KaziBrionSCA at worldnet.att.net
Tue Apr 24 16:14:13 EDT 2007
Greetings to all!
An idea that has been around for a long time, for hobby merchants, is to
form a guild or a coop. There has been one in the BMDL for a number of
years, although I think it sort of fell apart. Consider the possibility of
getting together with another merchant and sharing space and expenses.
Consolidate :-) That way, the guild can get the insurance and cover all
it's members; check with your agent on how to structure a deal like that.
Also, I have been able to put items with various merchants on consignment.
Merchants are generally very nice about it, especially if the merchandise
complements their assortment. Of course you may have to give up a bigger
piece of your profit to cover the new expenses.
When it comes to resentment against merchants within the SCA, I think it's
because we look at certain items offered for sale and see them either as
cheap imports, virtually identical from stall to stall, or as pricey
hand-made items. For a jaded, seasoned SCAdians, the cheap imports hold
very little interest. And when it comes to hand-made items, I am the first
to say, "Gee, that costs a lot, maybe I could make it myself..." That's how
I started carving horn, for instance. It's not really resentment as much as
trying to stick to our values and actually make SCA items with my own hands
whenever possible. Cross-crafting is, after all, one of the great
educational phenomena of SCA involvement.
What we buy: what we cannot make. Rapier weapons. Fancy hand made gloves.
Emergency garb. Dishes. Occasional jewelery. Books. Well-woven baskets.
Fabric, trim, buttons. Leather. Rattan, shield blanks. Some armor. Tents.
What we make: What we can. Garb. Shoes. Horn vessels and daily use items.
Some armor. Soap. Some furniture. Food.
As you see, even though we make a lot of what we use, we still buy more.
C'est la vie.
Kazi Doubravka Vltavska
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