On Sundays I reflect.
I didn’t drink alcohol this week. I’m coming up on two years of sobriety.
Today I’m going to talk about the challenges I’ve been facing, and what’s going to happen next, but first let's talk about our most recent guest artist, Bryan Ratcliffe! He was in the studio this week for an epic collab sesh, yielding six cups and a great day of powder riding at Vail. We’ve been trying to connect for years, and upon meeting for the first time we connected instantly over our love for glass and passion for snowboarding. Both of us want to keep some of the things we made together, and ultimately we might.
At the same time of Bryan’s visit we interviewed a kid who was interested in filling the administrative role needed at the studio. We had a great interview over three days and I found him housing, but upon arriving home he told me he had lost all his savings in the stock market and was unable to take the position. Of course.
For the last six months my graphic designer J. Cost has been operating out of my studio, and helping me with day to day operations. On Wednesday J will be moving on to pursue his own projects, and will be continuing as my graphic designer remotely as he was before this summer. I am deeply grateful for all of his support, and consider him to be an integral part of this brand. If you want to support J in his next chapter, some of his work will be available on my site and you can contact him directly at @planetjcost on Instagram. If you’re looking for a mural or art trade, his schedule is relatively open to travel and he’s also available for graphic design work. I would highly recommend his services, and wish him the best of luck on his journey.
So now I’m back to square one. I’m going to be "taking a break" in order to figure out a way to move forward. I’m unable to generate enough money to keep this business alive through the business alone. I’m also unable to perform all of the required tasks alone to keep this going, so it’s time for a change.
I’m in the process of looking for a job, and will most likely be working for my friend’s landscaping company starting in May. I’m far from enthusiastic about this, but I’m extremely grateful that my friend is willing to give me work.
All sales will be made on the website. I’m unable to manage my Instagram DM and deals. I will still be able to ship promptly, and any client that has my personal phone number can reach me there for larger acquisitions. I’ll do my best to keep the Instagram feed updated with content, and probably will not be using my story for a while. I’m going to try to keep writing my Sunday reflections and I’ll be wrapping up the artist spotlight blog posts I've been working on.
I’m going to be talking with interested investors over the next few weeks to see if I can wrangle up the funds to hire an administrator and revitalize the business. I’m unable to work IN the business and ON the business simultaneously, so I’m going to take a step back from daily operations to work on the big picture. For the foreseeable future, I will not be blowing glass.
If you are an artist I represent and I owe you money for work on consignment or collaborations we have made please do not be concerned. I will still be paying all of my outstanding debts, but I need a minute to get above water. You will still be paid promptly upon sale of work on consignment or collaborations with me. All cups with charity portions included will still be donated upon sale as well. If you would like me to return consigned work, contact me via email and I’ll do so right away. I have a photo shoot scheduled for all unlisted work, and will be updating the site with all available inventory as photos are edited.
If you’re reading this and wondering how you can help I want you to know I appreciate your support. Every purchase made on the website will allow me to pay artists and pay off any outstanding debt.
To everyone who has liked, commented, messaged, and purchased drinkware from us over the last five years; thank you immensely. It has been a privilege to get to run this business and serve this community. I’m not giving up on this, but I need some time to recover from what has completely engulfed my life for five years (or ten if we’re talking about how long it’s been since Glass first captured my attention).
While this feels like the biggest failure of my life to me, I feel like it’s important for me to take a step back so that I can return to this business with the mentality and resources required to keep it going. In five years I’ve spent almost 2000 days working on this, with very few days off. I was homeless in the beginning, sleeping wherever my friends and family could fit me. Even once I had a bed to sleep in, I rarely found myself getting more that 4-6 hours of sleep a night, and aside from snowboarding I can’t think of a single moment of time spent awake thinking about anything besides Drinking Vessels and how I could make it better.
((HUG)) your accomplishment is amazing! The site is amazing! It’s okay to take a step back, catch your breath and regroup. Don’t feel like a failure, this is just a smart pivot and you’ll be back before you know it! You’re too important to the community to not. All will be well.
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March 01, 2020
Failure is an integral part of success. You’ll get back. Everyone is very proud of you!