Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Confessions of a Klutz

It happens to all of us at one time or another. We make something we are inspired to make, someone is inspired to buy it, and then BAM! We drop said item on the tile floor and it breaks.

That's what happened to me this morning. I sold one of my corset pendants with an attached sterling silver bail - NOT one of my cheaper items - to a customer on Etsy. I printed out the packing slip, gathered all the packing materials, weighed everything and printed out the postage, after which the program sent her a confirmation email. Then while giving the pendant its final once-over before putting it to bed in its little red box, kissing it goodbye as it were, it slipped out of my fingers and onto the floor. Only a tiny piece broke off of the collar. But ceramics is not an immediate-gratification art; there's no way to repair it quickly, and in good conscience I couldn't send someone a repaired piece anyway. So I'm looking at completely remaking the item, which is a three-day task at best.

So what's the first thing I did after I dropped the pendant, besides crying? Well, I headed down to the refrigerator, of course; what else?! Then I stared out at the wildflower field for a while, trying to pick out the different species that are now flowering; the rain yesterday sure helped it along. Creative procrastination is definitely my forte', but the refrigerator move has me concerned. I now know that stress prompts me to eat, so there may actually be a silver lining here. I turned on the TV to a movie on HBO, more for background distraction than anything and decided to blog about this little tragedy that has so ruined an otherwise lovely day.

I've already left my customer glowing feedback, and she deserved it. She paid immediately, as most Etsy customers do, but now I'm afraid I'll get neutral or - heaven forbid! - negative feedback. It's bound to happen sooner or later; I was just hoping it would be later. I've always said that "a mistake is a chance to make a lifelong customer", and I make it a point to bend over backwards for my customers. I'm definitely going to be doing backbends here!

So I'm off to email her, to confess to my klutziness, to beg her forgiveness, and to give her options. Keep your fingers crossed!


*melanie* earthenwood studio said...

Oh I am SO sorry, that really stinks! But you are only human, and I am sure your customer will understand. It happens to all of us...

Why, just this morning I got a call from one of my customers, who just received a package intended for another one of my customers. Apparently I switched labels before shipping. Ack!

Mine is an easy fix though, I just need to resend the items and I have them in stock. Sounds like you had a real nice one of a kind piece that broke. Bummer.

Cheer up!

Helen said...

Thanks, Melanie. I'm still waiting to hear back from her. I no longer feel confident that emails make it through, though. Meanwhile, I'm getting to work on some replacements. At least it'll get me back into the studio, and that's a good thing!