On Sundays I reflect.
I didn’t drink alcohol this week.
The last time I drank was in March with JCOST @planetjcost before he departed Vail after almost a year of helping me with my business. I probably had three shots of whiskey that night, and I have had less than ten drinks since I decided to quit a few years ago. I think it has been about two and a half years since I made the decision to quit drinking. It was weird for a while. I used to think about it a lot and notice weeks and months that passed. Now the only time I find myself thinking about drinking is when I write that sentence every week.
I was talking with my accountant this weekend who told me that my business is likely profitable for the first time. I guess I could have figured that out, because I finally hired an accountant to help me figure out what is going on. I do not have a formal business education. I joke with my accountant that my entire knowledge of how my business works is that I sell the cups for more than I pay for them. Until recently, everything relating to my business has either been in my head or written on a piece of paper to be thrown away upon completion. I am finally at a point where I am able to analyze the data from the last few years since moving into my studio. My accountant is working on a budget for me, which I have never had. He referred to my spending as “random and unpredictable” and my selling as the same. With his help I am beginning to get a grasp of the big picture of what we have built over the last five years.
A friend and fellow artist Stephan Peirce @stephan_peirce told me at the beginning of the year that I have been too busy working in the business to work on the business. I spend around 16 hours a day running my business, brokering the art, creating the content, packing and shipping orders. This leaves me with very little time to produce work myself on the torch, and even less time to focus on big picture elements of the business.
As I have been able to train a team to assist me, I have had more time for both of those things. I have turned my torch on and created something almost every day this week. At the minimum, I tried to make a twisty pint collaboration with Rob @logglass every day, and all of them have already sold. Most of them sold before they were cold, with collectors calling DIBS before Rob and I finished creating the cup. I didn’t get to make any composition notebook prep, but I can feel it coming soon. It has been a real privilege to be able to make the time to blow glass this week, and I am optimistic that I will be able to keep it up.
I have also had more time for things like meetings with my accountant and my brother to discuss the big picture. I have been asking myself a lot lately how I can improve the content, and we as a team have come up with some solid solutions that you have seen a taste of if you follow our pages. This is just the foundation of what is coming next. We are learning how to use the video features such as “Reels” on Instagram, and the engagement on our page is at an all time high after a bit of a lull.
I’ll use this line for a brief reminder that back in March when JCOST left and before COVID became a thing I was considering shutting down my business.
Now I have a team of people helping me fulfill my vision. I had no idea how I would pay any of them when I hired them, which I disclosed at the time. I advertise working for me as “terrible treatment and worse pay”. Somehow, we have been making it work the last few months and while I still work all day every day I feel I huge sense of relief due to these people helping me to carry the load.
Special thanks to Marta Litwiller, Colin “Skinny” Hagan, and Taylor Corey in addition to my brother and everyone else helping behind the scenes. I would not be able to succeed without you all.
I will be up in Denver this week to spend time with @thelittleglassgallery and @desstinyhope who are my clients, friends, and Destiny shoots some of our photo content. I am extremely grateful for the support these two have given me and so many other artists. We rarely get to spend time together because they live in California, but I always cherish the time we do get together. If anyone reading this is in Denver or Boulder and wants to create some content with us shoot me a message. I am also offering to deliver anything in my inventory to collectors in the front range.
So now for a CUPDATE!
AK @absolutekrunk decided to release some things from his personal collection. I was able to lock down 3/4 of what he let go, and one of those pieces will be available soon. The first cup I got was a True @truekrunk x Eusheen @eusheen pint glass collaboration from 2017. This one is heading to my dude Willie in Chicago. I also locked down a water bottle made by Stephan Peirce and Rye @ryeglass which is going to @thelittleglassgallery to make his matching mug into a set. That was the cup that brought us together years ago when I flew out to California to deliver and meet him in person. It is a real privilege to be able to bring these two pieces together finally, after years of trying. The last cup which is not yet sold is an AK x Eusheen pint that will be coming soon!
Rob @logglass has been in cup crush mode and I have the most available selection of cups from him I have ever had. He just came up with a new color pattern “Fall Vibez” and also started putting wig wags in the bottom of his fumed tumblers. Hopefully we will have some collaborations available soon too, and if you want to get on the list for one just let me know!
N8 @nathan_miers sent a batch of prep to Stephan Peirce to assemble into two pint glasses and a mug. I have a handful of people on my short list to buy these, but they have not presold. It is very unlikely that any of them will make it to the website but if you are interested, again just contact me to be added to the list. Stephan will also be making some more solo pint glasses and maybe some other things as well. It’s always a treat to open a box from him.
It has been a very exciting week, and I am equally excited for the week ahead. I appreciate you tuning into my journey here, and hope you enjoy your Sunday!
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