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~ Outdoor Shows ~
Product Protection and
The more fragile your product is, the
more necessary it is to protect it. Put
fabrics in the shade of a canopy so they don't fade, - including silk
flowers, etc. Even pressed-flower arrangements will fade in
the sun. Don't forget that that summer time has dry
spells, and when it's dusty, your merchandise may be
ruined. Be careful what you take to outdoor shows as
some products can end up dusty and faded.
Sometimes it's more work to take everything apart to save a
pieces, than to toss it all away and start over .
Consider the comfort
factor, too, as well as your long-term health.
On sunny days you're getting your fill of sun exposure, and racking up
ultra-violet radiation for the next decade’s
skin-cancer statistics. I am a reluctant
expert on this subject; -with my dark hair, who would have
thought I’d be a casualty in the skin cancer wars? I
don’t sunbathe, and I haven’t had a tan in years. I
wear a wide-brim hat the last 25+ years, and use sunblock (SPF 30)
not sunscreen. But ancient history has a way of catching up to you, -
eventually. It really didn’t look like anything much. It
looked like a bit of scar tissue, but I know I didn’t
have a scar above my lip.
As I examined it in the
mirror, it had a slight sheen. It was skin-color, but
different . Sure enough, it was a basal-cell
carcinoma. This is supposed to be the most benign of skin cancers,
growing very slowly. What they don’t tell you is that by the
time you see it,
it’s been growing a while. Some basal-cell
carcinomas put down roots into the skin instead of remaining encysted. Wouldn’t
you know that was the kind I had?
After the biopsy I looked for a good
plastic surgeon who does Mohs procedures.
That’s where they keep checking skin samples under a special
Mohs microscope until they reach normal skin, - to make sure they
don’t leave any cancer cells behind to grow, - and that they
don’t take too much flesh. I was fortunate. I asked several
dermatologists who they'd recommend, and several came up with the same
name. It was worth traveling an hour and a half to the Albany
area because he had to do a skin graft. It could have been a mess, but
it’s not as noticeable as it might have been, had someone
less skilled done the job.
Along with protecting your
merchandise, make sure you protect your skin. The holes
in the ozone layer make it easier than ever to get a sunburn. When I go
to shows, I usually carry sunscreen samples for craftsmen who forget
and are burning. By that time, the damage is already
done—I’m just helping to prevent more.
Get a canopy, - and a hat with a
4” brim or more, and sunblock . Be prepared
for rain, wind, cold weather, hot weather (2 fans and
access to electricity—one fan for you, one over your
to tempt customers to linger, and buy!)
put a word in for you with the weather man, - but it’s a crap
shoot, no matter how you look at it. The weather man lies! I
received a panic phone call from an artist who signed up for a show,
and 4 days ahead they predicted rain on four channels. It
ain’t over until it’s over. Rain clouds
blow over sometimes, and good weather predictions turn sour.
Don’t get discouraged ahead of time. The weekend
was gloriously clear, but too hot. Customers stayed away
because of the heat.
the best, but prepare for the worst. Good luck with the rest of your
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