YeOldeRF

Author Topic: Looking for Artisans and Vendors  (Read 5622 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Sovereign Springs

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 3
Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« on: March 26, 2011, 09:05:38 PM »
The Dream

What if you were invited to live in a village that was populated with fellow artists and artisans.  A place made beautiful by the craftwork of its populace.  An off grid, green community, custom designed to offer you not only a comfortable modern apartment, but a workshop, storage areas and a storefront?  What if the operational personnel of this community took care of the grounds, provided access to specialized vendor services and even food, and best of all invited your customers to visit the community on a regular basis?

Well this is your invitation….

Currently a group in Colorado is finishing up designs for a community created to cater to artisans and host festivals.    The site feature various themed festivals throughout the year.  You as an artisan are welcome to participate in the festival as a vendor or if the theme does not interest you, to sublet your storefront to others.  In addition to the festivals on site, the community will feature your artistry throughout the site itself, and will, if you are interested, arrange for paying students to visit and learn from you, and will help you get exposure at festivals all over the world.  Lastly the site features a specialized staff of professionals who are there to help take the non artistic parts of your business off of your hands, leaving you to focus on the art you love.   

Artisans may choose to rent storefronts only, or storefronts with lodging above.  The rental rates include utilities.   Internet and satellite tv is also available on the site for a small fee.  All of this is offered to you at less than $1 per square foot, which is well below state averages.  And when one takes into account how much more is rolled into this offer, above and beyond the square footage, this offer is unbelievable, but we advise you to believe it, and if interested, to come join us, and live it!

Perks included in rent

Purchase Agent – This staff resource will do all of your raw material purchases, arrange for shipping and delivery.  As appropriate the Purchasing Agent will also deal with storage of stockpiled supplies and work on pursuing best prices, and when possible, bulk discounts.

Shipping Agent – Will arrange for the pick up and shipping of any of your outgoing product and recovery of any returns.  This will include collection/packaging of mailing of anything from a small order up to and including the handling of a shipment to an art show or festival that your product is to be featured at.   Additionally, when possible the Shipping Agent will attempt to combine large product shipments to save costs for all involved. 

Event Agent – The event agent seeks out festivals, faires and conventions that are appropriate for your product, contacts these opportunities for you, and presents you with the specifics for each opportunity.  You decide which to accept, the agent arranges for contracts with the events, gets your signature, and archives all info on all shows that your product attends.  As this agent is also arranging for similar contracts with other artisans he/she will often be able to negotiate a better deal in bulk.

Webmaster – The webmaster will build your site and update it as needed, ensure that you have a web portal for purchases and ensure that all of the income from web sales is directed to the accounts you request.  The Webmaster will also undertake efforts to aggressively market your site to help it appear high on search lists. 

Consignment floor – In addition to your storefront and web presence, your product, as appropriate, will be on display throughout the site.  For example, a Glassblower’s work might be used at the Pub, while a Carpenter or Potter’s work could be used at the Inn and Bed & Breakfasts on site.  Site visitors will be advised that everything they see on site is for sale, as such, the more your product is used to adorn public areas, the more exposure, and thus sales, you open yourself up for.

Group Credit rates – We will be aggressively pursuing group Credit Card rates.  For many vendors, by joining this coalition of artisans you will gain 1-2% points of charges back, thus increasing your total income accordingly

Insurance – We will be securing a group policy that will be available for purchase by all artisans and their family.  By getting a group plan we will be able to get better options and rates then are available to an individual artisan.  (The perk is dependent upon the success of National Health Care, i.e. if it withstands the challenges and is enacted for all citizens we will not be seeking a group health policy.)

Community – Probably the biggest perk is that you become a member of a community comprised of fellow artisans, peers with whom you can collaborate and commiserate.

In Closing

We will be offering additional perks for participants who commit before the ground breaking.  We are beginning to reserve space in the village now, if you or an artist or artisan you know would like to be on the mailing list for updates please let us know at Sovereignsprings@gmail.com.  You can also feel free to join us on our Facebook group – Sovereign Springs 

 

Thanks for your time!

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2011, 10:15:32 PM »
I would very much like to know more about this, particularly since I'm planning to move back to Colorado this year to pursue my crafting on a full-time basis.  I tried to find you on facebook, but was unable to locate a page.  Will there be a periodic newsletter, by chance?
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Dinobabe

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1222
  • Bold and Stupid Men!
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2011, 12:07:46 PM »
I did a little online searching and can't find anything.  The only other site had the same thing posted in the blog.  The Facebook link led to nothing.  Along side the post was an add for a book about how to make money with art faires.  Hmmm.  I have a feeling this isn't real.
Natasha McCallister
Bristol Faire 1988-2005
The Wizard's Chamber/Sir Don Palmist
59.2% FaireFolk Corrupt
midsouthrenfaire.com

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2011, 01:00:36 PM »
(sigh)  You're probably right... 
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Rowan MacD

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2057
  • Playing in the past...IWG#3139
    • Rowan
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2011, 05:26:52 PM »
 Perhaps to be reported as SPAM?  The only other post by this person is the same thing on another thread.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2011, 05:28:30 PM by Rowen MacD »
What doesn't kill me-had better run.
IWG wench #3139 
19.7% FaireFolk pure-80.3% FaireFolk corrupt

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2011, 08:38:56 PM »
Well, so far all they have here is an email address (which isn't really supposed to be included in posts), and no outside sales link, so I'm not exactly sure.  If they were actually selling something, or that link led to somewhere in particular, it would be a slightly different story...

I'm wondering if they're just trying to collect live email addresses...
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Tink

  • R/F.com Member
  • Posts: 411
    • Facebook
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2011, 08:39:39 PM »
I was thinking it sounded a bit too good to be true.  Nice idea, though
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy. - W. Shakespeare

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2011, 08:40:50 PM »
Awesome idea... if it was real. 
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Sovereign Springs

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 3
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2011, 12:09:39 AM »
Sorry about the confusion and any mis-steps in etiquette.

Let me start with this.  It is real, or at least there really is a group of us working on this.  And we really have, with about a half decade of brainstorming, sorted out not only ways to make a year round site, very profitable, but ways to get the land that is needed and the investors to front the money for the infrastructure and shoppes. 

These are two VERY big hurdles to building a site like this.   But with enough creative minds most anything can be accomplished.

The personnel committed at this point include 3 LEEDS architects, two real estate agents, an honest to goodness Disney Imagineer, an accountant (maybe two now, thanks Storm!) a company full of master electricians, several data gurus, a webmaster, a food and beverage director, an entertainment director, several event planners, a growing group of ops folks…  And as the word gets out, more and more interested Artisan/Artist/Vendor community pioneers.

We are not asking for money, we are simply seeking interest, as confirmed interest does two things, it gives us proof of concept for investors, who, for the most part do not understand or trust faire and festival cash flows, and it gives us a list of folks to contact, once the investors are writing checks to start the leasing. 

Several of the group members were at AnomalyCon in Denver over the weekend and were scouting Vendors and Artisans and were able answer questions directly and as a result of that dialogue get input in regards to another need that most vendors and artisans would enjoy, a staff accountant who could make your end of year receipt woes go away.

The Facebook site is a brand spanking new private/hidden site, if you want access just send us an email request and we will send you an invite.  The reason for this is that we have more than a little concern about people who might feel threatened by such a site actively working against it, which frankly is silly as we  are committed to avoiding scheduling conflicting events with existing Colorado festivals. 

There are two reasons for this, one, we do not want to lose any Artisans/Vendors who already have contracts or resources devoted to those events, and two, we do not want to negatively impact attendance at those shows, it is a much better thing for us to cultivate the clientele peacefully and share it, then to enter into a lose lose lose lose competition in which our site, other venues, the artisan/vendors, and customers all lose out.

So yes, it’s real, yes it’s an awesome idea (glad so many of you agree), that sounds too good to be true, but it is true, and we want your input and feedback so we can take it from very good idea to operational site.

If you have further questions or need other details to establish that we are serious and not just fishing contacts, let us know at the aforementioned Gmail address, we’d love to hear from you and anyone else you think might be interested.

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2011, 12:18:25 AM »
Well, to be honest, the secrecy angle makes me nervous.  If there is no transparency, then how can anyone check to see if it's legitimate?  I don't send out my personal email address to just anyone, but you may private message me here with an invite. 
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Rowan MacD

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2057
  • Playing in the past...IWG#3139
    • Rowan
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #10 on: April 21, 2011, 04:36:41 PM »
 Any word back?
What doesn't kill me-had better run.
IWG wench #3139 
19.7% FaireFolk pure-80.3% FaireFolk corrupt

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2011, 05:08:29 PM »
Sorry... I've been immersed in soooo many other things lately that I haven't had much time to focus on this, but yes, actually... it seems like a legitimate enterprise, that is still very much in it's early days of implementation, but they do seem sincere, dedicate and very hard working.  They've got a wide volunteer base, several professionals dedicated to making this dream a reality, and they are at the prospective blueprint stage.  Still searching for a property and investors, but they are seeking their big money from large investors and not from crafters/artisans.  What they need from said crafters/artisans are letters of intent stating that IF this happens, IF this enterprise is realized, then they commit to renting space at an extremely reasonable rate upon the opening.  No investment required or asked for, just letters to show prospective investors that the genuine interest is there, and enough letters of intent to show that the idea is feasible, and the spaces will be filled as soon as they are made available. 

There is no SPAM-bot waiting to send you anything at all, so I suggest joining the facebook group...  I have, and there is a huge amount of info, including prospectus, building plans, cash flow info, etc... and someone willing to answer any and all questions anyone asks, as well as being willing to listen to and seriously consider any and all suggestions.  In fact, I have a couple of renmails that I have been asked to repost here so that some of this info is available to anyone who wants to read it before they seek out the facebook group... 


The following are SOME of the identified cash streams:
 
Rents:
Event space rentals: Weddings – Corporate events etc.
Booth rent from on site artisans and merchants
Housing rentals from on site artisans and Merchants
Room bookings, nightly to weekly by patrons and students - these would be in the castle, the Bed & Breakfast, the tavern/Inn, and private cottages
Camping - Patron, Staff, and non affiliate - summer Camp space, family reunions etc..
 
Site sponsored events & attractions:
Seasonal festivals, to include: Haunted Castle, WineFest, Music Festival, Western Fest, Dickens/Victorian Fest, Winter Fest (Santa's Village/School Concert series), St. Patty's Fest, Craft fairs, Art fairs, Food Festival
Ethnically Themed Weekend Festivals - for example, a Columbus Day Fest for the Italian community featuring Guest kitchens & stages showcasing the community's talents
Avistrum events - Avistrum is an American school of Wizardry (see Harry Potter) that features immersive fantasy camps for wizards of all ages.
Castle Players – after hours dinner theatre
Regional Historical Recreationist Combat gathers
Regional Paintball Tournaments
Concerts
 
Education:
Partnerships with schools to do class walk throughs on a variety of Western European historical periods
Partnerships with regional schoolastic Music and Drama departments that allow the schools to use the site to showcase their artists and fund raise at the same time (gate share)
Partnerships with The National Renewable Energy Labs - showcasing a variety of cutting edge green tech in use, powering an entire community
Artisan classes (Pottery, blacksmithing, glassblowing, etc) see http://www.lapidaryschool.org/
Acting classes
Riding School and Stables
Sword School
Jousting school
Falconry
 
Spa/Holistic Center:
Full service spa with a pagan bent
Seminars on herbalism, psychic studies, profession counseling, medical professionals and more.
 
Grants:
National Endowment for the Arts
Educational Grants
Energy Grants
Animal Rescue grants
 
Miscellaneous incomes:
Off Site Catering
Off Site performances
Off Site classes
Printing/design
Power grid buybacks
Web driven sales
Season passes
Letters of marque (allowing attendees to buy "Royal Titles" at events they attend on site)
 
 
This is not an all inclusive list, but for the most part it is a list of cash streams that we have personnel to run, and in many cases it would be at no staff cost to the site. 
By contracting space and taking a percentage of profits the drive to succeed is on the individuals, we simply give them a place to play/teach/live and take a portion of their bounty to support the site. 
 
The property needs to be at least 200 acres, but will preferably be closer to 600.  Most of the above will be in a 60 acre "village" section.
 
The village would have distinct quarters - Bawdy, Pirates – Ship & cannon battles, Fairy, King’s Wood/Sherwood – eventual tree village, Queen’s Gardens & Maze w/pavilions.
Structures in the village would include: Castle – main hall, Chapel, Craft halls - processing, Theatre, Arena, Inn, Vendor Booths, Food courts, Little kids section - Petting zoo
The village would support crafters and vendors year round, and on festival days would feature - Games, Rides, Animal displays/rides – Falconers, big cats etc, Street performers (actors/musicians), Stage performers (actors/musicians), Classes – sword, dance, etc, Children’s journeys treasures, intellectual challenges
 
Adjacent to the village, but shielded from view would be 100 acres worth of parking and two camping sections
 
The rest of the site would feature cottages, a motte and bailey fort or two, campgrounds, farmland, orchards, and lots of unspoiled space.



Some of these points are in answer to questions I asked, so if anything seems like one side of a dialog, that's why...


We are not asking for percentage of sales, at all. 

There is talk well down the road, of incorporating the site into its own township, like many other things it has already been researched and we know how to do it, but it is so cart before the horse. 

The upshots of such a move are many.  Primary among them is staving off other towns from annexing the land we have into their town for tax base.  I have been involved with squabbles between towns/cities and faires, it gets ugly...  best way to bypass, be our own town.  That also would allow us if approved by the townsfolk (mostly vendors) to set a sales tax rate for purchases within the city, proceeds would be rolled into city improvement.   

As for price per square foot, it will all be at or just under the current Colorado residential square foot averages.  All space will be treated as residential regardless of its use type, which considering the cost of retail, is quite a nice perk.  For prospectus calculations we have been using 99 cents, it may adjust by pitch time but it will not exceed state residential averages, ever.

I think your last was time commit, at the rates we are offering, especially considering the staff perks, we are looking for annual leases.  We will however be flexible in lease times as needed but that may affect pricing and resource access.  It’s likely a better bet for a transient vendors to get a booth (rented by event) rather than a shoppe, or to get a shoppe and sublet it when they are not using it.

And there is another thing I’d like to answer, you did not ask it but you mentioned it as a concern, the economy.  It’s horrible, and if you pay attention to the dollar and the way it is being devalued, we might very well see a time soon when it is no longer the global currency, when that happened with the pound inflation went through the roof and they suffered a bad depression. 

Sovereign Springs, has a lot more to offer its family then just a steady flow of patrons and cheap supplies and labor.  There are about 20 families, with doubtless more to be coming, who have committed to homesteading on the edges of the property to establish and maintain the orchards the vineyard and the permaculture forests.  If for whatever reason there should be a downturn in the economy or something worse, Sovereign Springs will already be self sufficient. 

We want a home that we can all enjoy and be comfortable in, and the design in place ensures that happens with or without a world outside our borders.  Please don’t run off, I am not offering Koolaid, we just plan very deeply.  We decided early on that just as we want to educate on olde world crafts, skills and village life, that we want to educate visitors agriculture, olde and new, and host farmers markets, and as that idea developed we realized that this site will reach a point where the outside world, while a nice source of patrons and extra money, will be otherwise superfluous to us, if we build everything intelligently, and we have a lot of very bright people to ensure that.



I see no reason not to at least explore this, because if they get the investors they need, then this could become something unlike anything else, anywhere...  It's an incredibly ambitious undertaking, but if it takes off then I have the feeling that it will become the place that every crafter/artisan, everywhere, aspires to live and work. 


Oh, and I am not affiliated with this endeavor in any way, and have not been offered anything at all for this, or any other recommendation.  Besides, all I'm suggesting is that people look into it for themselves. 
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Merlin the Elder

  • Legendary R/F.com Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 4846
  • Casting Quality Spells Since the First Millennium
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #12 on: April 21, 2011, 05:30:24 PM »
I find this to be a fascinating endeavour. I'm also hopeful enough, perhaps to a point of naïveté, that people actually care enough about other people to put together something of this nature. I think that on a much more limited basis, the Sherwood Forest Festival has some of these makings.

I would be interested in hearing more on this project.
Living life in the slow lane
ROoL #116; the Jack of Daniels; AARP #7; SS# 000-00-0013
I've upped my standards. Now, up yours.
...and may all your babies be born naked...

Offline Rani Zemirah

  • True R/F.com Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 6360
  • Wandering Gypsy Drabarni
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2011, 05:52:23 PM »
Merlin, in the original post in this thread there is a way to contact them, but you don't "do" facebook.  I'm sure they would be willing to send you more info via email, however, if you were to ask. 
Rani - Fire Goddess

Aut disce... aut discede

Offline Sovereign Springs

  • Newbie
  • Posts: 3
Re: Looking for Artisans and Vendors
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2011, 09:36:18 AM »
We also have the initial website live.  Www.sovereignsprings.com

 

Web hosting provided by www.RangeHosting.us