It's time to reflect on the differences a year makes.
Last Christmas was the end of my first year in business. I had incorporated my company in March, spent the summer developing and marketing my chair and first crate, then started making crates large enough for vinyl records in the fall based on a suggestion from a friend. My previous 12" crates had not been selling well, but these larger crates served a purpose that was easy for people to understand. As Thanksgiving came, I was building as many of these record crates as I could, anticipating a rush.
Black Friday came and went and there was no rush. But once December started orders began coming in and by Dec. 18th or so I had sold out of all the crates that I made. It was thrilling, I made a product that people liked and the holiday rush was validation of that idea.
Now to this year, this holiday. Throughout the spring and summer my business changed from mostly record crates to mostly furniture. I designed a set of nightstands, my Chev Danish Nightstand, which has been very popular and sold well. I was constantly sold out thoughout the spring, to the point where I had to finally label it "sold out" so that I would stop getting preorders. It made me uncomfortable to have so many outstanding preorders. I like to keep my shop pretty close to on schedule and I've been transitioning my business to only sell product that I've already built so I don't have that preorder list looming over me.
My chairs were also a hit and they kept me busy as well. In the fall with so many working from home I introduced my Single K Modern desk, and it has quickly become my top seller, as long as I can keep it in stock. They take some time to build so from time to time I go out of stock.
So this Christmas I thought I had learned from last Christmas and was going to build a large supply of inventory. It didn't happen. With me as the only builder getting more inventory isn't as easy as telling the factory I want more. I am the builder, I can only work so much. I built what I could and I was sold out fairly quickly. There may be a year where i'll build enough inventory to ride the Christmas season without selling out, but i'm not there yet.
I'm thankful to have customers who appreciate my design and ethos and support the work that I do in my shop. I've increased my prices a little bit to support the goal of moving from my home shop to a small commercial space where I can hire an employee to help me build more. Looking forward to more changes and growth in 2021.