I thought it might be time to whizz around all the stuff in the box at the side by the picture of the giant doll shopping in the little shop, because there are new readers all the time. If you are one, hello!
I still haven’t had time to rush up to the post office with some sample parcels, to assess the impact of the new postal charges, in force at the post office, but not here, for a couple of months, for two reasons. I am investigating smaller packaging which will still be able to be posted as a large letter at a lesser rate, even though I have a squillion boxes stashed behind my scrap screen, as you do. (Well I do, it’s part of the general junk, brand new expensive boxes. This may or may not say things about me. Clearing out drawers at my mother’s in case the care agency worker needs to stay, I found a huge cache of almost unused hand bags, which says a lot about her.) My mother was the other reason I hadn’t the time. Straight after the Thanksgiving event for relatives at the University, exactly when I needed a bit of thinking time, my mother had a fall, breaking a chair but not herself, miraculously. As this was almost certainly due to a mini stroke, I stayed until I was sure she was OK, which is why you didn’t get a posting on Monday. Today I have to be here; the car which is on its last legs, like all of us, so bad it conked out on the way home last night demanding oil (and possibly a rest, a day off and a nice cup of tea but there aren’t any lights on the dashboard to say that) is in for a service. So, having arranged care workers twice in the day, I have a day off, relatively speaking. The number of things I am going to do today is without number. Well, I say numberless, but the number is three, at least. I’m not counting doing the washing, or cooking or cleaning. I am counting doing the lawn, which may have a herd of elephants lost in the grass, who can say? I am counting a bit of a blog, ici. I am counting doing the modelling for my Christmas cards. I am counting a workout, which is usually interrupted. So that’s four. It’s interesting that I’m counting the things I like and not the things I have to do, which possibly proves that I’m an optimist, as does the numberless number of things I propose to do before bed time.
So, for new readers and those with excellent forgettories, you don’t have to have an account at PayPal to shop here, whatever the postal charges, all you need is a plastic bank card of any type. Your payment is processed by PayPal, who extract a fee and pass the rest on to me. This is wonderful because I remember the day long ago when I made enquiries at the bank about accepting plastic cards at shows and was told they’d be happy to do it and it would cost me a thousand pounds a card, in the first year and all I had to do was pass the cost on to my customers. I politely told the bank where they might alight, continued to keep my prices exactly where they have been for twenty years and went on accepting actual money and personal cheques at fairs as I always had. Online that caused problems. The standard procedure from small artisans was to accept cheques and send the parcel once the cheques had cleared but I know that when you’ve given your heart to a doll, or something you need for your house, you need it as fast as the postman can get his little leggies moving. So Paypal do the checking for me and pass on the order the minute you’ve filled in the form, I find and pack the item in the box warehouse (otherwise known as my dining room) and leg it up the road to the post office. At unbusy times of year sometimes readers get their parcel the next day. So that’s all there is to it. The postal charges, which are explained in a column on the right when you click on ‘View the shop, click here to go shopping’ and then select ‘Postage and Packing’ under Information, may not rise by much if I can redesign the packaging. The costs really only cover the postage, I reinvest in postal boxes when I’ve had a good show. It’s horribly unbusinesslike but I’m not really a business woman, I’m just an artist who is pathetically grateful A) when you support the arts and decide to collect something I’ve made and B) very glad not to be any of those modern artists who make money from scribbled-on tents, wrapped cliffs and pickled sheep. I don’t know how they sleep at nights, I really don’t. Boy are they ever going to go up burdened ( I might send them a blanket square, after, possibly, drawing a dot on it.) (See the previous entry just under here.)
To recap: you don’t need PayPal to shop here, just a plastic bank card and a love of collecting proper artefacts, made with experience and care. All the information about shopping and how the things are made are to be found by clicking on the picture of the shop and afterwards on the items in the column on the right.
All the column inches I have written for free for the last four years are to be found by clicking on the archives, either by Archive publication date or category, when they will magically appear. It is safe to click around this site. In the shop by clicking on the icons on the pictures of the dolls you can zoom in and out to see the small things better than you would with a magnifying glass. You cannot accidentally vanish words, or buy something without meaning to. There is a sufficiently lengthy process to go through to know you are buying something, you cannot do any ‘one click’ shopping here. There are no robots or factory workers or giant warehouses just off the motorway. It’s all in the UK, to be specific, in my house. The only people involved are me and you and occasionally my son. I had the foresight to produce a computer engineer, which is handy because I have no idea how this works at all, despite the fact that having made everything, I then take all the steps necessary, stating with photography, continuing with a massive computer effort thingy of a gazillion steps (all written down, in very simple English for the hard of thinking) and ending with the bit where I put the parcel on the scales at the post office.
Tis you and me and done to make you happy. And why I did it is for the number of people who wrote to the magazines in which I was a columnist, wishing for more, more often, not expensive and not always about dolls’ houses. And for the collectors at fairs, who wished the fair was every week and, handily, in their house.
I hope it’s working for you. I shall now go and mow the lawn.
JaneLaverick.com – informative.