So here we are in Spring 2012 and summer seems just a few steps a way..
At last we can start looking forward to new season fashions. Here at Myriad Life Jewellery & Scarves I've started adding the new season accessories collection to our retail site MyriadLifeJewellery.co.uk
and of course to the stall!
It's always exciting to greet a new season and choose new necklaces, bracelets, scarves etc to complement the fashions for (hopefully) sunnier days.
This year florals are big and it's easy to be inspired when you see all the spring flowers popping up in their stunning colours.
So check out what's popping up on the website too, enjoy the preview pictures here and keep an eye out for new additions!
Come see the stall at Diss Market every Friday, Sheringham Market every Saturday (and Wednesday too from April 4th). Keep an eye out for updates here about shows the stall will be at during 2012 and do pop in and like Myriad Life Jewellery's Facebook page!
I recently agreed to do an event having been told it was to raise money for a school. The lady complimented me on my stall and told me that other than one other trader selling beads for jewellery making, mine would be the only jewellery & scarf stall. I was happy to hear this because I knew the venue would be small and footfall not likely to be huge.
So after a full day at market, I packed up and loaded my van (which takes a couple of hours), went and had a hot chocolate and a break for an hour then drove 5 miles on top of the 40 minutes it took me to get to market that morning to the event down dark, unfamiliar lanes.
Once there, I unpacked my boxes once again and created the best display I could in the space given. After a while another lady arrived next to me and started to unpack her...jewellery and scarves! As it happened she turned out be lovely and we passed a pleasant enough evening sharing our experiences of trading but the whole point of us being there, to do business, make some money for our efforts, got lost.
There would have been no point in asking to move, I had already spent over an hour setting up, and the venue wasn't big enough to make any difference. The lady next to me also happened to sell handbags (very nice ones too) but when she looked up, another lady selling handbags was setting up opposite!
A friend of mine who sells beautiful chocolates and sweets had a stall in the next room and told me she had also been told she would be the only seller of this kind at this event. Another trader lied to, I wonder how many were.
Now it doesn't feel quite right to ask for pitch money back when the event is for fund raising for a delightful little school and it would even seem meaner to have demanded back the raffle prize. So on the day, we all ended up over a barrel so to speak.
The organiser proudly informed me they'd had around 70 people through the door. Hardly enough to go round really and certainly not enough to validate my efforts (or those of my friend who had worked at her shop all day) at a 15 hour day. I finally arrived home at 10.30pm.
The lady selling scarves and jewellery next to me told me about an event she had attended at the Forum where the organiser had merely placed a small box advertisement in the EDP to promote it. Of course it ended up very poorly attended.
So please organisers, don't lie to traders to get them to an event, be honest! Make sure traders have enough space to do a proper display, and I can't emphasise this enough PROMOTE YOUR EVENT FOR MONTHS IN ADVANCE!!!
Even with a small budget there is so much you can do, Facebook and Twitter are free, get posters created (easy enough on a computer) and put them everywhere you can think of, talk to local radio and get mentioned, ask traders to give out leaflets and promote via their social networking, put up road signs. Be inventive, you'll raise much more money that way! Otherwise, you won't have so many traders at your event next time, I for one don't repeat disasters!
'I wanna tell you a little story' that's what dear old Max Bygraves used to say. My little story is just about how great market traders can be when times get difficult.
On Friday my van broke down, it was no big deal, the RAC soon came out and sorted the problem in their usual efficient and friendly way but it made me late for Diss market. I sent a text to a fellow trader explaining the problem.
When I arrived a trader was waiting to help me put up my stall. He helped with the frame and canopy and another female trader then came over to help me unload the van. I am not allowed to lift heavy stuff because of a spinal problem, other traders know this and woe betide me if I so much as look at a weight! So all was sorted really quickly and I could trade as normal.
Now this might not sound like much but it means the world to me. A lost day is bad enough, we often lose them to the weather but this day the sun shone and I would have hated to miss it. All traders understand how another feels in the same situation.
When I had serious problems with my neck and arms last year, I felt really bad about asking others for help but they would not hear a word of my protestations. For the past year they have all made sure I don't do myself any more damage and always check I am ok. These are true friends indeed.
It's not just me who has been helped in this way. Whenever a trader gets sick, suffers a bereavement or needs help, however much we bicker or moan the rest of the time, people rally to support them. This is always good to see.
Markets have their own little community and visitors help out in their own way too. We have people come and fetch papers or keep an eye on the stall, or while away the time with us. It's a funny little world but I love it!
Sometimes friends/family look at me strangely and say 'don't know why you do that job,' to be honest sometimes I ask myself the same question but it shows all sides to human nature, and humans truly are fascinating.
Don't believe the stereotypes of traders presented on Eastenders and the like, come find out for yourself!
Pretty new scarves are arriving on the stall ready for sunnier days. Scarves are a great fashion accessory all year round and are as practical as they are pretty. Use them to add interest to any outfit, finish off formal wear with style, pep up your jeans and t-shirt, use as a cover up on the beach, tie around the waist over your bikini. It's up to you...
The multiple use you will get from a scarf is brilliant! Versatility is key. Myriad Life Jewellery have lots of beautiful colours, styles & shapes in stock.
Summer approaches and warmer days are beckoning (hopefully). Already we have had a taste of warmer spring climes and market traders (alongside anyone else who works outside, and most people generally) are desperate to have a good summer after such a long arduous winter.
In Norfolk we are lucky enough to have quite a few good weekly markets. Myriad Life Jewellery visits four markets a week in summer season. Sheringham Wednesday market starts again on April 6th, the stall visits Sheringham again every Saturday all year round. Sheringham Market even has its own blog www.sheringhammarket.blogspot.com
As does Fakenham Market and you can find the Myriad Life Jewellery Stall on the Auction Site market every Thursday.
Friday the stall visits Diss Market in South Norfolk. So markets are covered both North and South of the county. There is nothing nicer than shopping in the great outdoors and on the beautiful North Norfolk coast, avoid the crowds and queues and High Street clone stores and seek out a different way of finding what you need!
The Myriad Life Jewellery stall stocks a wide variety of fabulous fashion jewellery in Norfolk in a great collection of contemporary designs and colours. Also you will find beautiful scarves in many colours, materials and designs. The collection of both jewellery and scarves is ever-changing so you can expect to see something different each time you visit.
Of course friendly, helpful service is something you can expect! If you are looking for something in particular, for instance a certain colour necklace or earrings to match an outfit, could be a wedding outfit or some other special occasion, let us know and we'll endeavour to find something suitable. Try items on, colour match, we can always put items aside for a while if you need to go away and think. We are always happy to help with gift ideas too.
Myriad Life Jewellery came into being 9 years ago when I decided I'd had enough of working for other people and wanted to do something different. Having visited markets in Europe and seen the lovely displays and buzzing atmosphere there my thoughts turned to how I could create a stall with its own unique style right here in Norfolk. The idea was to create the kind of stall I myself would love to come across. I wanted to see variety, colour, regularly changing designs and to see, well something a little bit different from jewellery pinned to boards that you often see on stalls.
Typically (for me) I didn't take the easy route. My idea was to lay the jewellery out so that browsers could pick it up, not in packets, or on cards or putting ten of the same item up hanging up in a row but on tables colour coded so that potential customers could try it on, feel the quality and easily see the size of each item.
This means that setting up takes a long time to do. Putting up the frame is the easy bit, arranging everything takes hours! This means that if you come to see Myriad Life Jewellery atFakenham Market on Thursday, you can come again to Diss Market on Friday and Sheringham Market on Saturday and see an altered display every time. The same happens with the scarves. The models get dressed on a daily basis, the colour combinations change every day.
Suppliers are reviewed continuously, I am keen to get the best designs and the best prices possible for my customers. Over the years regular customers have become friends I want to please and keep interested. They rely on the stall not only for their own accessories but for gifts for their friends and loved ones. I am passionate about keeping my customers happy, after all they are the whole point of the existance of the stall! If you can't make it to a market or show the stall visits, you can still buy the jewellery & scarves via www.myriadlifejewellery.co.uk
Just back from a very wet day at Sheringham Market. It has been a bitterly cold few days out on the markets of Norfolk, starting with Fakenham Market on Thursday. It didn't seem to matter how many layers I put on, the cold rushed straight through to my bones. At Diss market on Friday I developed a strategy of bouncing about the stall, hopping on one foot then the other and drinking copious amounts of tea. This has two effects, one is odd looks from passers by and the other lots of visits to the loo.
It doesn't matter what flask I buy, it always ends up smashed eventually. The current one is doing well but it's not really big enough. It has been recommended that I buy a steel one from Morrisons, they don't have the inner ultra thin thermos lining that always seems to come a cropper as a booted foot kicks it over or it falls of the stool.
This cold weather means a constant hunger too. At the moment I'm not worrying too much about what I eat as I'm training to run the Race for Life but on Friday it has to be either chocolate cornflake cake for breakfast OR chocolate marshmallow cake. NOT both. (Although that does inadvertently happen on occasion.)
Spring is almost touchable now with evenings lightening a little longer every day. The birds sound very excitable as I leave in the morning which is also a good sign better days are to come. However the temperatures soar to 12 degrees one day and plummet to just a couple another, leaving it impossible for the body to regulate properly one way or the other. I can't wait until customers are complaining 'it's too hot' again, but it will surely come!