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Monday, November 17, 2008

Not all trades go smoothly


Last year, there was a discussion on LE about a certain lampworking product. I mentioned that I had purchased one and never used it and would offer it up for trade. I had a couple offers and I went with the person whose beads I thought would most fit my style of designing.

Long story short, I sent the item to her that day. She sent me a PM thanking me for the quick delivery and said she'd work on my beads that week and have them on their way by the weekend.

I like to think I'm just about the epitome of patience, but apparently there's a fuzzy line between patience and door mat.

I emailed a few times over the next several months. Finally, about five months after the start of our transaction I received some beads from her. I have to admit my first thought was, "Oh, she changed her style." Sigh… But someone said something to me this weekend that made me go to this person's online store and look around. Nope, she didn't change her style. All the beads I see in her for sale sections, her gallery and her sold items are still the same lovely beads I've always admired of hers.

What was it that someone said to me this weekend to prompt me to do this? She looked at a piece I'd made recently, asked whose the beads were, I told her the name and she said, "Oh really? They look like Unicorn Beads to me."

Do you know what Unicorn Beads is? It's one of those companies who mass produces lampwork beads… one of those places that the SRA lampworkers kind of hold in much disdain. I won't buy from Unicorn Beads because I don't trust that their beads are annealed and/or otherwise created and taken care of in the way to which I've become accustomed (and to which MY customers expect).

Am I pissed? I don't know. I mean, first of all, I can't be sure. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt… but… shrug. I'm actually more sad than angry. I'm sad that someone in the SRA lampworking community is that insensitive, flaky, and possibly dishonest. But that would be her problem, not mine.

P.S. I have no desire to "out" this person so please don't ask. I just wanted to vent and be done with it. Thanks for understanding.

P.P.S. What if this person really DID make the beads she sent me? Do I feel badly about this mini rant? No, because I should not have had to wait five months for the exchange to conclude.

Given much thought to the organization over the past weeks. Aside from getting it back up and running (accepting new applications and directing people to assistance with their membership), I want to (ha ha ha… the word that came to mind was "inflict") instill some of my personal philosophies into the organization.

When I was younger, I use to have animosity toward (this is just an example) missionaries who would go into non-industrialized countries and change the lives of the natives "for the better". I'd be all, "For whose better?!" But I see now that people do what they are capable of (what they know) at the time. And part of being a Christian missionary isn't just BEING one yourself, it's also spending your life trying to "help" others. To educate them into the ways of their chosen religion. I can't fault them (anymore) because it is part of their religion to try to "save" heathens.

Did that make any sense?

Anyway, that was just an example to explain why I want to put some of MY philosophies into SRAJD. There are certain things I believe in and if I don't follow what I believe in, I don't feel I'm being true to myself.

One of the things I believe very strongly in is friendship and the idea of working together. So over the next few months, you may see an attempt (and I say "attempt" because you just never know how things will go… as an idealist, I usually learn this the hard way) for me to connect SRAJD members in ways that I hope will be beneficial.

More to follow…

Monica's Present
I wanted to show pix of this absolutely gorgeous piece of jewelry that was presented to Monica recently. The bead was purchased at BABE from Tom Boylan and then made into a fabulous chain maille necklace.

Monica wants you to know how absolutely thrilled she is with it, you two. She says it's a perfect fit and she couldn't be happier with how beautiful it is. Thanks for making her happy.

I haven't had much free time this month so I'm late with sending out any notices of my November sale items. A few of them are already gone, but here's what's left… see if anything tickles your fancy.

Oh, I also plan to add information about Bracken Designs accepting lay-away now. We always did, I just never advertised it.

Anyway, here are this month's incredibly low priced offerings. The prices revert to normal on December 1st.

Thanks! Your comments mean a lot to me (although I feel like you're the teacher praising one of her kindergarten students... ha! I'll take it though!).

Oh heavens... if you make something inspired by that pic, I totally want to see it! How funny to think my work could inspire someone... I'm so used to thinking the other way around... y'know, ME being inspired by so many things around me.

I didn't get a chance to work with the "Fabric of Africa" beads yet, but hopefully soon. Gabe had four CAHA games this weekend so it was four trips to San Jose and back. I feel like I want to do something with my new-found skill, but I have no clue yet. Ha! I also need to purchase some silver sheet.

Also, someone sent me an email regarding this digital art of mine and forgive me for being a major spacer cadet but I can't even remember at the moment who it was... but you asked what program I use. I'm using Adobe Photoshop 6.0.

Well, lots to do so I'd better go. Thanks again everyone for the well wishes sent to Monica. She's thoroughly enjoying all the texts, btw. She feels very loved. Wish us luck at the appt tomorrow!


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