Where Are We Going?

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juliem
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Last seen: 3 years 8 months ago
Joined: 2010-08-18 15:50
Where Are We Going?

My husband and I have been doing henna for 8 years - he does it full-time and I do it part-time because I also have a full-time job. We have recently started thinking about selling henna supplies and/or teaching others. However, this brings up a question: Do I want to supply others with equipment/supplies/knowledge that would allow them to compete with us in applying to festivals? The number of people applying to be henna artists at festivals has increased, but not exponentially. However, even one other henna artist at a festival is competition. People are always asking us where to buy henna. I thought selling an extremely simple, stripped-down kit would help them realize how difficult it is to produce the type of end result they get from us (for $5, often). Thoughts?

Jen
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Last seen: 3 years 11 months ago
Joined: 2010-04-26 06:47
Re: Where Are We Going?

 I agree. Usually when I teach a class or sell a kit, that person gets frustrated and comes back to me for one of my designs. I think selling little kits at festival venues is a great idea. I wouldn't dump a whole lot of eggs in that basket though! I found focusing on retail in this field to be frustrating, and unrewarding both financially and mentally. Personally I'm much happier when actually DOING henna is my focus.

Maggie
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Last seen: 5 years 11 months ago
Joined: 2010-05-08 22:45
Re: Where Are We Going?

Well for me I look at it this way, if the person is seriously interested in henna and trying their hand at it what would I prefer? A) They buy fresh, well staining and natural henna from me or B) buy some unknown premixed cone or worse buy deathpaste and end up sick, scarred and misinformed about henna. I know what you are feeling and I felt that way in the beginning too but I suppose I just came to believe that if they are going to play with henna at least make sure the henna they play with is safe. Most people who pick up a henna cone will never stay with it let alone try and make it into a business because as well all know that is hard as hell to make it work. As for other artists at the festivals, I guess because I come from a city of free market festivals it's never been an issue. It is a free market, and I don't care how many henna artists are sharing the park with me as long as I am able to provide people with top quality henna, dark & long lasting stain and show that I am skilled in it then that's enough for me. Mind you glitter doesn't hurt either. My last festival last year there were roughly 5 other henna artists (2 slinging deathpaste) in the park but I am still the only place that had a 2hr long line up because people want quality. Sometimes I think we don't give the public enough credit, most of them aren't going to hop in the chair of the first henna artist they see, they will look around first and then choose. Just make sure you're the artist they choose.

Nicole
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Last seen: 6 years 1 month ago
Joined: 2010-07-02 02:30
Re: Where Are We Going?

 Good point about educating people Maggie!

Also, if they really want to do it as a business, they will buy it somewhere, even if they are informed and want to buy good quality stuff.  So, if they're going to compete against you, at least let them buy their materials from you!  Since I started carrying powder, I've made a few contacts and found people who have already been doing henna (business or personal) and now they buy their henna from me instead of online or sketchy places.  Also, the way I see it, if I don't sell all my stock, I'll use it up anyway, so it's basically no-risk.  Just don't buy more than you could use in three years to begin with, just in case!

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