My latest project believe it or not has not been about the “Design”, but the portrayal of the design. With the current environment of increase online shopping, it is increasingly important to be able to create designs and then translate them into photos that your customers will love. No matter how beautiful we feel a bouquet is, sometimes it seems impossible to take a picture that translates the same sharpness, color and detail we see in person. After years of countless hours trying to photo shop an image to create a picture I am happy with I have invested a small amount of cash in a 3 piece lighting system and set up a permanent photo “studio” in an unused corner of the shop. While I am new to this lighting practice, I am determined to figure it out. My first try was yesterday when creating images for our Easter selections on our Website. The lighting did help but I have some practice to do in order to properly figure it out. Next try will be Mother’s Day. There are certain techniques to positioning the umbrellas to maximize the high-lights and low-lights. It is a bit tricky and definitely out of my wheel house. However our online store needs to be as presentable as our physical store, so I am excited about this new kit and what it can do for our website….. Here is a pic – you decide.
The only Cost Of Good that has drastically increased since I purchased the store 14 years ago is Helium. It has increased more than 3x in price for a cylinder. My supplier does not even offer it anymore so we had to go directly to their supplier. We negotiated a price and then when we ordered our next cylinder 3 months later, the price was up even more. I knew that helium was a depleting natural research but I did not realize the magnitude of the situation. I am told that eventually we will just not be able afford to fill helium balloons anymore. Can you imagine a party without helium balloons. The need for helium in the medical field and science, along with recreation has taken its toll on this natural resource. Back 14 years ago a helium balloon was .50, now it is 1.25. To compare a rose was $3 and now is $3.50. See the difference in percentage of increase in helium to fresh product. Big Box stores that can sell helium at low prices can do so because years before the shortage became apparent they negotiated long term contracts with helium suppliers to hold prices at a fixed low price. So next time you go into a Big Box or Box Party Store and see helium balloons inflated for display only, realize this is irresponsible on their part. No need to waste an already depleting resource for display only. Anyway my supplier has advised me to get a price before each purchase because most likely the cost could raise 10% each time I need a new tank. Woowza! We definitely will be rethinking how many unfillled latex and mylars we keep on hand – because someday in the near future it may not become cost effective to fill them.