WMN Woodworking's Next Step
My project's goal is to move my business from local art fairs to bigger, higher end art fairs with professional displays.
Ever since I was young I wanted to make my living with wood. About five years ago when my job disappeared along with millions of other jobs, I decided to give it a try. I'm still working at it. My idea was to make something that shows the beauty of wood in a fun way & still keep wood functional or give it a purpose. Band saw boxes have been around for many, many years but the time needed to make them can be considerable. Thus very few woodworkers make them. With practice and trial & error I have been able to reduce the time needed and still make a quality box. My use of two types of wood in each box adds a contrast and beauty that one wood block doesn't offer. It also allows an affordable way to add exotic woods depending on availability and cost. As supply can be limited at times I have not included any exotic woods in the choices of my offered rewards.
I sell my boxes at art fairs around the state of Michigan. I do have a few gift or galleries that have my boxes but sales in that way is very unreliable. The shows I do are not a craft type show but also not considered a high end show. I have won awards at many shows. I've never received first place but I've come in second or third a few times with a number of honorable mentions.
I have kept the business afloat, but I have never been able to bring in enough sales or make enough product to move up in the art show world. I keep my prices as low as possible & still make a profit which allows me to offer something different & beautiful to a wider range of patrons. To increase sales I need to be accepted in higher end art fairs. They require better displays. Many shows do not allow the use of tables in the display. They require stand alone displays. Painted wood would also be discounted. The display should be laminated with a nicer material, at least for the shelves. This is my current display. It is nice enough but not nice enough for many better shows. It will also include the need for a better tent. A $300 pop-up like I use sways in the wind. Tables are easily shifted to account for that, stand-alone displays will not move as easily. These tents cost around $1,000, used. This will be the largest expense in my upgrade.
The cost of the wood & materials to make these displays has made it hard to accomplish. I have time to make these displays in the winter & spring months but the show entry fees are also due then. There has never been enough money available to cover the cost of both.
All the woods offered in the rewards would be considered reclaimed. The trees were either downed by storm or removed for other reasons like too old & dangerous. The wood would have been cut for firewood if not acquired by the mill I buy from.
My tool situation is always an issue. I lose a lot of working time repairing tools that should be replaced. Again money becomes an issue. Woodworking tools are not cheap and tools designed for professional use cost even more. My hope is that this campaign is successful enough to replace one or two of my over-worked tools. To that aim, if my campaign goes over $4,000 I will include a t-shirt with the top three pledge rewards & a postcard with every pledge over $5.
For a $5 pledge I will send you a personalized postcard with my t-shirt design. This design is just for this Kickstarter campaign.
For a $20 pledge I will send you a specially designed t-shirt. I came up with this design just for this campaign. The happy woodworker & his new toothpick. All rewards should be received with in six weeks after a successful campaign.
A $45 pledge has a reward of a one drawer box. This box is made with three or four different woods. Is is a great box for an office desk or an entry way, a place for keys. It has a large amount of room inside for its size. It is about 6.5" long, 4.5" tall and they average 3.75" deep. I do not offer a choice of woods for this box because of the number of different woods used. I will put a better wood in the front & for the back to show off the grain or coloring.
A $90 pledge has a reward of my version of a tree but many people see a mail box. I see this as a living room or family room decoration but these boxes look good anywhere in a home or office. It stands about 10.5" tall, 6.5" wide & around 3.75" deep. The options for this box are walnut, cherry or elm as the outer wood. The cherry & elm will have walnut in the center. The walnut will vary for a center wood. Some boards look better with red oak or ash. You pick the outer wood & I'l find a good match for the center.
The $135 pledge reward is a ladies favorite. It is perfect for earrings, small necklaces or rings. It has eight drawers and is easy to use. Each drawer has finger opening cut into the back. The options for this box are walnut with cherry center or cherry with a walnut center. It stands 10.5" tall, 6.5" wide and around 3.75" deep. Please see the update for another wood choice, African Padouk. A naturally red wood.
The reward for a $155 pledge is my largest box. It has two slide outs to hang necklaces. Each slide out has two pegs. The center drawer has a removable foam ring holder and the other four drawers are different sizes that allow a bunch of options. It is a complete jewelry box in a compact area. It stands close to 11" tall, 8.5" wide & 4" deep. The options here are walnut & cherry or cherry & walnut.
Please see the FAQ's for links to images of each reward in the wood type choices. Thank you for looking at and considering a pledge to my campaign. And of course an extra thank you if you do pledge to my campaign.
Risks and challenges
The risks involved in this project involve the time needed to make the rewards. Each box is made by hand. If this campaign is a big success it will take a while to fill all the rewards. I picked only woods that are local thus I have a few options to get the needed wood. I should be able to fill all rewards within two to three months from the end of the campaign.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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