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To rep or not to rep?



(Peter:
I am unsure if this is an appropriate posting for the
list. If you think it isn't, please veto. Thanks,
Suhag)

Hello friends:

I know that some of us on this list are well
established in our crafts and even scraping
a living off it. Some others are hobbyists, and I
suspect that many are like me - somewhere in between.
I started in papermaking and bookbinding as a
hobby which pretty soon became an obsession. And,
inevitably perhaps, I began to sell my scrapbooks and
paper lighting through a few galleries. I now have my
work in one gallery and a few stores around the
San Fran bay area. I would like to expand, and this is
where I need advice.

What do you all think of sales reps? Some people work
purely through reps; others swear never to
work with them. Given my situation - 2 little kids at
home and me working in my garage - I cannot
hope to cover a sales territory with any efficiency.
Nor am I keen on the "art & wine festival" route.
So the only option I have is to find reps. I have a
couple of names, from my customers. But how do I tell
a good rep from a bad one?

Can anybody offer any suggestions? Do listmembers in
the Bay Area know of any good reps? Are there
magazines or newsletters which have rep listings? How
do I recognize a good rep from one who will just leave
my samples "at the bottom of the bag"?

All advice greatly appreciated,

Suhag
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