There has been a lot going over here at Feldi Studios these past few months. I have been quiet on Instagram lately and it may seem like I have stepped out on this venture, but fear not! I am still here. Just making some major life changes and trying to take some time and space to thoughtfully consider next steps for Feldi Studios.
I started selling my pottery in August 2020 and it feels like I have been running at 100 mph since. A few things went down this year that forced me to slow down. If you are interested in the rundown of events and subsequent epiphanies as they relate to Feldi Studios, keep on reading!
This year has been marked by setbacks and challenges. In early February 2022, we went under contract for a house. I immediately packed up my studio. (I wish I had made some work before I did that, but ya girl was excited!) We moved a month later. All things considered, it was a low stress moved. However, a week later, my sweet kitty, Lola, passed away. The next day, I slipped a disk in my back which is still, (~5 months later) fucked. I was bedridden with grief and a bad back. A few days later we had to evacuate our home due to a wildfire. (Luckily no structures burned! But man was that stressful.). A few days later, I got a horrible week-long cold that once again had me bedridden. A week after I recovered, I got COVID. This all happened in a span of 2.5 months. I hold a full time job as a faculty member at CU Boulder, so I prioritized that role over this little business while I was going through all of this. My physical health and unpacked studio prevented me from developing ceramic goods for a few months there.
In the whirlwind of starting and running Feldi Studios while working full time, I never had the chance to ask myself how I felt about the way I was running my business. With all of these setbacks to my pottery practice this year, I was afforded a rare opportunity to pause and reflect. This led to a few discoveries.
- Spending a lot of time on Instagram is hurting my mental health. I feel a lot of pressure to keep up with the trends and algorithms and it consumes way too much space in my brain. I spend a lot of time thinking about content I will never make because tbh, I don’t love making content. And when I fall off the app for a little while, I find it very difficult to get back in the habit of posting and engaging.
- I super cherish the connections I have made on insta, but I wish I was more plugged in to my local community of makers and artists.
- In an attempt to meet demand over the past few years, I worked myself to burnout. Pottery is my meditation and I enjoy it best when I can slow down.
- I would love to offer products at a lower price point. My ceramic work is painfully tedious and time consuming, which leads to higher prices which can definitely be prohibitive.
I have sat with these thoughts and feelings and made a few key decisions for Feldi Studios moving forward.
- To make stronger connections in my local community, I will be participating in local markets and fairs this fall and winter.
- I am going to work slower. This combined with selling at local markets means I will likely have fewer shop updates with fewer items available.
- To compensate for the slower production schedule as well as the higher price point on some items, I will be developing a line of non-ceramic goods at a much friendlier price point! Think art prints, phone cases, hats, tee-shirts. Feldi Studios is a design house and I am excited to see how I can apply my graphic style to non-ceramic goods!
- I will be developing a more diverse set of ceramic goods beyond drinking vessels and planters. I am currently developing coaster and coaster sets. I might get into wall hangings. Maybe some other functional objects. Who knows!
- I will be showing up on Instagram a lot less. I will continue to post about important announcements like new products, ceramic drops, etc. But the algorithm will certainly punish me for not posting + engaging more regularly. So if Instagram is how you like to hear from me, I recommend adding me to your notifications so you get an alert when I post! And to be extra sure that you stay in the know, sign up for my email list, which I will start using soon!
I am feeling really good about the direction I am taking. I have been thinking about it a lot and taking small steps in this direction. I am sure some things will work and some things won’t and I will adjust as necessary.
For now, I am pleased to say that my studio is mostly up and running. I just have to do a little more work to get the kiln set up. I am slowly working on new works to prepare for fall markets and a few online sales!
- I’ve had a super fucked up year that forced me to pause and reconsider how I approach Feldi Studios.
- I am not loving being on Instagram lately, so I will be *doing less*. Set up notifications for my account and/or sign up for my mailing list to be sure not to miss important announcements.
- I am slowing down my creative practice and working to connect more in my local community. This means less work available less often. And I’ll be in a few local markets this fall/winter!
- I acknowledge that the price point of my work is prohibitive and I want to be more accessible, so I am developing a line of design objects at a lower price featuring designs inspired by my pottery.