Today I received something in the snail mail that really bothered me. Some how my little custom shop received a furniture dealer catalog. Upon perusing the pages, I started looking at the pricing. After I shoved back in my bulging eyeballs, I had to look again and was simply stunned. There was a photograph of a lovely table; cabriole legs with acanthus carvings, a cloud lift apron with a nicely beaded border, a finish that was close to a piano finish in a mahogany color. The dealer price was $259 dollars. TWO-HUNDRED FIFTY NINE dollars! And that was my dealer price, what was their costs, $100? How in the world can they sell that table for such a low price? Excluding the materials, how much are they paying the people to make it? A dollar a day? Oy Vey! No wonder today’s consumers are expecting such low prices.
Granted, consumers who know furniture, know how much quality furniture cost, especially custom pieces. How in the world are we supposed to keep jobs in America if we are shooting ourselves in the foot with these ridiculous pricing structures?
Artisans, craftsmen and tradesmen (I’m using “men” like mankind and mean to include women too) need to find a way to counter this vicious cycle. No wonder America is loosing so many jobs abroad! Buy American, buy local, buy handmade!
Turn for Troops
On a lighter note, November 5, 6, & 7 2010 is national Turn for Troops day. Here is Baltimore, our local Woodcraft store is hosting the event. I intend to get out on the 7th (my birthday) and turn a pen or two (b’n). If you are a turner, I hope you will give this event a spin.