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The Season Has Started (oh, yay.)


Well, here we go again, melting pots going full bore, trying to lay in supplies of my little dudes for the upcoming Christmas season....Challenges abound, I know everyone's sick of hearing about Co-Vid, supply chain issues, etc, but, some of those problems are very real, and are still affecting small guys like me.

I'm back to being essentially a one man show, not because of any kind of Co-Vid mandates, but basically, I'm having a very hard time finding people with the ability, or desire, to do this type of work.....People wonder why shops like mine are a dying breed, it's mostly because the "young 'uns" have no interest in getting involved...hot metal & stinky paint, just doesn't have that "allure".......Everyone seems to think I'll be paying them 25 or 30 bucks an hour, to sit in an air conditioned office, playing around with a computer.....

You'll see me adding more of what I call "re-sellables" to the website....No, Don't worry, I'm not turning into some kind of sell-out now, who's going to be just another company selling crap from China....I'm trying to find some other interesting "companion" pieces, to pick up some of the slack I'm anticipating from not being able to make as much stuff as I used to, when I had people actually helping me. I'm trying to find nostalgic type products that will blend in with what I make, to create an old Woolworth's sort of feel.

I've had a load of "out of stock requests" for the Sapphire Glass skating ponds...I'm scrambling around trying to find a new supplier, I used to get them from a small local guy, who unfortunately passed away......Another "old school" craftsman gone, and it seems like that lack of dedication, ambition, or whatever you want to call it, has also made its presence know in that field, too...As these guys, who used to truly love their work, retire or pass away, more & more, I'm feeling like some dinosaur, who will soon be "Last Man Standing"

Hopefully, I can find a way to minimize the impacts my cost increases have made....Everything, on average, is up at least 25% from last season.... I get some people who feel they're "entitled" to free shipping, because they place a large order.....Sorry, I'm not Walmart or Amazon over here, half the time, the shipping I charge, barely covers the actual shipping & charge card processing costs....

Also, many of my long time customers have been bemoaning the fact I haven't been attending toy & train shows, lately....No, it's not a sign I'm going out of business, it just means I have WAAAYY too much going on back at the shop & office, and it leaves a very bad taste in other customers' mouths, that I'm traipsing all over the place, while their order sits here, not being worked on. If I do leave town now, it's to scope out re-location sites....still shackled to Long Island, I gotta get out of here...hopefully, that will take care of itself soon....my gut reaction was to cancel this Christmas season, and use the time to seriously hammer out the relocation, with all the news I'm hearing on the economic front, it seems like everyone's bracing themselves for a wash-out of a season...but, I ordered too much inventory to let it sit around here, so it looks like Christmas is on....

Speaking of re-locating, time for me to relocate my butt away from the computer, and over to the work bench, to put some finishing touches on some new figures....word of advice: If you see something new, jump on it, because in an attempt to get as much variety available, I'm cutting back on the quantity of each style......I used to run thing of 50 or 100 at a time, I'm down to 25, maybe 50....If it's a new style, and I'm not sure how it's going to sell, I might only make 5 or 10, to get a feel for if people like them....

Thanks for listening, if you made it down this far.....and, as always, thanks for your orders, support, and patience!

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