Being interviewed by my friend Megan for design*sponge's guest blog is definitely the internet highlight of the day (the bunny-in-a-cup photo randomly pasted into chat about dinner plans by husband comes in second, so that tells you what kind of internet day I've had). Her whole series of interviews with crafty businesswomen is really interesting, so check them out if you haven't already.
I was thinking about the materials-sourcing question Megan asked me while looking at the case of pillow forms in my kitchen today. The box had been hanging out there for a couple of days, unopened, because I was pretty sure that once I cut the strapping tape, any hope of reasonable pillow containment was out the window. Also, you would be right to point out that "reasonable" might not be the exact word to describe my storage system of keeping the box in the middle of the kitchen, taking up half the floor space (to be fair, the kitchen is small. But still.).
I finally went for it yesterday, knowing that I needed to get the last few pillows of show prep finished & out of the way in order to move on to other things. The pillows were vacuum-packed, which, you know, yay for packaging efficiency, but is pretty daunting when the pillows that are already filling up half your kitchen are promising to double in size. And never fit back in their box again.
I like to think that I have, over the years, adjusted to the idea that wholesale pricing means bulk purchasing, which means bulk storing, which means lots of trips to Ikea & no hope of spare elegant minimalism ever in our little house. However, most of the things that I have stored, up to this point, have been individually smallish &/or flattish. Not so when it comes to the bag of condensed pillows that starts off, before reinflation, larger than my four year old. Ordering wholesale supplies is already a little bit of a leap of faith, where you have to believe enough in your product to think that you will actually need 50 pillow forms or 6 dozen shirts or 40 belt buckles, that putting the money up front is worth it, that you won't burn out on the idea, that you won't discover a better product at a better price the minute you've pushed the order button; it doesn't seem fair that it should be so physically awkward, too.
I mean, it's not like they won't fit in the garage (I think), but it's also not something that people warn you about when you go into business, that one day, there you'll be, in your best pair of work-clothes pajama pants (I totally confessed to this in the interview), wading through a sea of blank pillow forms just to get to the coffee pot.