I understand. Forgive me if I am approaching this topic in a manner remedial to your level of expertise. I`m not familiar with your position enough to know otherwise.
I would always argue that you are better off on the exhibiting side as reps walk the entire show looking for new and unrepresented designers. Do you think that because you have an exclusive line it could make your designs that much more attractive? I know the small boutiques attend exhibitions looking for the new and interesting all the time and it doesn`t have to be wholesale. Exclusive can`t be wholesale by nature. Necessary as it may be I`m not a fan of dealing with the wholesale market. As an artist I`m sure you can appreciate that.
True the expense may be there to pull this off properly, but I think you`ll find more control and interest on the exhibition side and a lot more of waiting and wondering on the approach side.
I`m not in jewelry of course but I`ve been to enough various trade shows to see this phenomenon repeatedly: The exhibitors will draw attention and invariably a vendor of whatever sort approaches the exhibitor to offer their services. This is to be expected but consequently and most often, their business card ends up in a pile with 20 others.
Stated otherwise, if your intention is to show your product your very best results will come from the showing/exhibiting side. You`ll see more interested parties and hence, gain the most controlled choices about which direction you will turn with your buyers all the while knowing that you are fielding interest from buyers everywhere. Even if you can only handle a few boutiques, it will be your decision who becomes your boutique. They don`t have to know exactly how many you can produce. If demand grew, I`m sure you would find a way to make your business meet that demand
Inversely, and now I`m stating the obvious of course, if you are buying, your best effort should be directed from the attendee side.....Unless of course you are attending an odd show that has designers running around and the buyer sitting in chairs.(Haven`t been to that show yet)
Getting back to what it is that you do, I`d love to see what you have to offer. Do you have anything that can be viewed online? I know of an aquaintance that lives not far from me that started making jewelry as a hobby years ago. She had little in-house boutique shows where she would peddle her original work. Well that was doing so well she couldn`t keep up and had to hire outside help. Now she is considering the next step which would be where you are..at the cusp of an independent and thriving business. Strange how word travels when you have something of value in your hands.
Regardless of how you achieve your goal. Please keep us informed along the way. Your experience is sure to shed light on somebody else`s plight or perhaps even help you find that one person that will help you take your business to the next level. That`s what SuN is all about.
Best of Luck to you Susan.
JE Design Group, LLC
If all you do is what you`ve done, then all you`ll get is what you`ve got.