As all of this is still rather new to us, we have also discovered that it is not uncommon to see vendors ‘trade’ goods with each other. While we never really factored it into our JamBusters! vending plan, we have managed to make some great trades with vendors we have gotten to know along the way. Probably our first significant trading arrangement came from a swap with a gal we have vended beside for most of the summer out of town. She makes soaps and lotions and although she has supported our business as much as we have hers by purchasing products, we have also been able to trade back and forth.
Last week we were planning a visit to see friends just over the border in Washington State. One of our usual stops is to see a mother/daughter combination we have gotten to know through supporting their vending activities. Our goal was to actually purchase some of their wax melts (George calls them pods) as we had recently purchased a wax melter. We have always picked up a scented candle or two from them whenever we see them, but this time around we were going to try the line of melts they recently introduced.
Interestingly enough, the evening before our trip George had been approached online by another fellow vendor we met recently. She was working on a project and was hoping to include some JamBusters! products and offered George a trade for either soap or honey or a combo. He jumped at the honey and only minutes before we left town we met with the vendor in our hallway (our inventory is sitting there) and made a trade. Everyone was happy and we hit the road.
When we got to the tiny community of Tonasket, we followed a routine we have developed over the years that basically gets us to most of the book, craft and bake sales before checking into our hotel room. Whatever events we miss our first day we get around to the following morning before we head back home. Our second stop was a vending venue where we usually find Sasha and Sadie with their Celebrations/Cha Cha Candles products.
We arrived about a half hour before the event started so we visited and I gave the girls a couple jars of one of my new products to try as I knew they were fond of other items I’ve shared. In the meantime, George and I selected a few different ‘pods’ to buy and take back home. Before we knew it, a trade was offered in exchange for the jellies I had presented – which was not expected – and we went with it. We still paid for something as we know what it’s like being a vendor and looked forward to getting home and trying out one of the ‘pods’ on our melter.
I let George pick the first one we’d try and he went with one named Cinnamon Buns. He had a job to do away from home for a couple hours so I cleaned our melter removing an old wax melt that had been used up and started up the one from Sasha and Sadie. I loved the scent and when George got home for dinner he remarked that he thought I had been baking. I told him it was the wax melt. He was impressed. “It smells like you’ve made my favourite – cinnamon buns!”
The next morning we tried the honey we traded for before we had gone out of town. I was delicious and far better than anything we have purchased commercially as it was raw and unfiltered. As far as we were concerned, the trades we’ve made with other vendors have been excellent and we trust those we’ve traded with are as happy with what they received as we are with what we traded for.