Despite what you may believe, I am NOT a crafter. I enjoy and appreciate crafts that others make, but when I attempt to do something creative, it ends up in a mess. I remember years ago, I bought a make your own stool kit at Frank’s Nursery and Crafts, I stenciled scrolls, flowers and vines all over it, sprayed it with some crap to make it smooth and attempted to put it together, but failed miserably. I ended up putting the unassembled stool partially sealed in a box for my grandparents for Christmas. They in turn, varnished it, put it together and to this day, it is in their living room. Yesterday was the kids’ school’s holiday bake sale and craft fair. This reminded me that a few years ago I was on a bottle cap necklace making spree. I got the original idea from Weener Ware. The process was tedious. I would pull the rubber seals from the caps, cut circles, mod podge them into the bottoms to seal them, let them dry, then fill em up with resin. But let me tell you, resin is a tricky thing, the measurements have to be exact, the temperature perfect, the material level, the bubbles removed. This whole process killed me. But, I was bound and determined to make them as gifts for my friends. As I completed them, my husband mentioned he thought i could sell them, they were so cute. So I, signed up for a table at the Irving craft fair. As the day of the fair drew nearer, I toiled and toiled to make necklaces, but with limited success. My resin wasn’t curing properly and the surfaces were tacky. In fact if you wore one for a few hours, the fibers on a sweater would make the resin scratched. I worked hours to re-coat the surface with better made resin. In all, I ended up with 50 or so necklaces. I went online and priced them out and decided to charge $15 each. That seemed fair to me. In fact, I would have charged $100 each given how much heartache they caused me. The day of the craft fair arrived and I carried my necklaces and a couple of towels to lie on the table. When I got there I found a group of holiday sweater wearing crafters and kids who make unbelievable things. I timidly put my necklaces on the table. The lady next to me was selling golf ball and tee poodle figurines. About 10 minutes after set up, a girl scout comes over and admires my supply of AMAZING necklaces. She carefully inspects a couple of them and asks how much they are. I proudly say $15. She smiles and walks away. A few minutes later she returns with some friends. They continue to admire the fruits of my labor. Our conversation went something like this.
“Do you have a table here today?” I ask the girls.
They say, “yes, we do.”
“What did you make?” I ask.
“Bottle cap necklaces.” they reply.
“How much are yours?” I ask face turning red.
“$5 each!” says the girl with the wicked smile. They giggle and walk away.
I panic and immediately B line to the bathroom and intentionally pass their table. They have the Holy Grail of necklaces. Theirs are smooth, colorful, and some even have little toys embedded in them. I can’t believe how cool they are and I can’t believe how embarrassed I am. I quickly call my husband and ask him to come and get me. He has to make up a story about being on call so that I can leave and get the heck out of that crafting gym. I tell the organizer that my husband got paged and I need to leave. He walks into the gym and starts to wail from laughter at seeing my pitiful towel covered table with pitiful necklaces. I didn’t sell one necklace that day, in fact I had to give one to the organizers and I had to pay $10 for the table. But, I learned a lesson about how hard it is to commit to an idea and to finish and make a good product. I am on to new things now, ones that aren’t that hard like…making wedding cakes.