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The Highs, Lows, and What’s Next

I’ve been off social media for a while because I had a hectic six months that made me rethink my business.

Our micro cutters, the PAC-PEN, changed our lives when polymer clay artists discovered it, allowing us to purchase our dream home, so it's no doubt this is one of the best things in our life. However,...

The start of 2023 was a nightmare with Royal Mail issues leading to hundreds of lost parcels and delayed deliveries.

By June, I had finally dispatched the miniatures ordered in February and sent photos for a feature in a miniature magazine I had promised for May, however the original plan was send them in February after I was offering this amazing opportunity first in November 2022... Eight. Months. Earlier! I’m deeply thankful for the patience of my clients and the journalist who were willing to wait for such a long time. A big 'thank you' to all of them!

... And I didn’t even get to do any pottery, which I was looking forward to after we moved last November.

I enjoy working on custom miniatures and have found a way to work with collectors without any issues. However, it has led to a repetitive pattern of creating the same few types of miniatures since summer 2022. With PAC-PEN also demanding my attention, I’ve found very little time to create new types of miniatures.

Well, this was the point when I knew I can't do my business this way anymore, because making miniatures is my main job but it's really neglected.

Oh, and the best part that someone accused me of cheating on an Instagram giveaway in May.

Well, that was a funny story!

A women kept messaging me, asking for a collab and offer her color recipes for a pac-pen product. I refused, but after the third message, I agreed to help her sharing her product on my story and she can keep her color receipes because I'm not interested. I was an idiot and even went to her Etsy shop to find nice photos for that story, because her content was only text, which is not the best when you sell color receipes.

Then she entered the micro alphabet giveaway. I made a video about the drawing and announced the winner as usual.

The next day, she went nuts on my TikTok and Instagram posts, saying she left tons of comments and she should have won. She said she couldn’t see her name in the video.

I tried to explain to her privately that her name wouldn’t show up a hundred times just because she commented a hundred times. I was in tears for hours because I didn’t know how to stop her from spreading her ridiculous accusation. I sent her screenshots, excel sheets, everything I could and finally, she stopped. I was shocked. I only do giveaways once or twice a year but no one has ever questioned my integrity in the last five years.

And on top of that in her lots of entry comments she were tagging plenty cutter makers too. Why is this just disgusting? Because, just like everybody I do giveaways to reach new potentional customers. I pay with the giveaway prize for the marketing you do by tagging friends who can discover my product this way. When she tagged cutter makers she didn't bring new customers, but she showed my product to the competitors which is not a help. I got from her this shit after I took my time to help her to promote her product for free. She pays back with this fucking drama and held her hand for the prize! I just can't get it how can be someone this dumb!

That was the last straw. In 2023 PAC-PEN turns five years old and I planned lots of giveaways and sales to celebrate this anniversary in the whole year but after this, I decided to take a break from social media and stop doing giveaways or even regular contents.

1:12 scale miniature pottery and pottery tools
Pottery tools and miniature pottery

Now, I'm ready to be back, but with serious changes.

Starting from September, I’ve stopped taking custom orders for miniatures. Given that my client base is built around this type of business, I’ll probably lose a significant portion of my clients. However, I can finally take part in fairs where I've never been before but I always wanted to. I’m hoping this will work out before we have to sell a kidney to pay the bills.

For those still interested, I’ll be offering new miniatures every month. Plus, we’re stepping up our game when it comes to material accuracy - pottery will be made from fired clay, wooden pieces from wood, and metal pieces from metal. I know I’ve been saying this for a while, but my plates have still been made from polymer clay… until now. And my range will be way wider. I have a long list of things I want to make in miniature size.

I’ve only used 3D printing for tool making in the past year, and that’s not going to change.

As for our PAC-PEN fans, I’ve had a hard time creating content for jewellery makers to show off our micro tools - asking for your help in content creation didn’t go that well either. I’ve said a hundred times that I don’t want to be a full-time cutter maker who only makes new tools and social media content, but I was pushing myself otherwise. I almost lost sight of the fact that

PAC-PEN is became popular because it was carefully designed to make my work easier and not because I wanted to make tools that everybody can find useful.

So, now on on my PAC-PEN social media accounts, you will see PAC-PEN related miniatures and ways how I use my tools for miniature making using polymer clay, metal clay and pottery clay. I’m sure I’ll lose customers here too, but the real creatives will stick around. Those who can adapt a tool designed for miniature making to their own fields without showcasing.

If you’re a collector who only buys made-to-order miniatures, or a creator who’s always on the lookout for trendy shapes that tons of people use in jewellery making, I want to say thank you for your support over the past few years and I kindly ask that you unsubscribe from my newsletter. There’s no point in receiving news that doesn’t interest you, and your spot could be filled by someone who wants to see what we come up in the future.

I know I'm taking a gamble here, potentially risking it all, but I’m hopeful that something amazing will come out of it.

For those who are sticking around, I’m finally working full-time on my miniatures and my husband has already made new tools for me in the last few months, so stay tuned if you want to see them.

Take care, happy creating and see you soon!

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