How have you been? Is this fall season zooming by for you as fast as it is for me? Oh my word, it just won't stop! But I have to say, the deeper we get into autumn the more beautiful it gets here at Rooster's Chapel. The view from up at the farm... it's simply breathtaking right now. It's a good day to write a blog post because I have a little head cold and feel super under the weather at the moment. Hot soup, hot tea with lemon and throat lozenges are on the menu today!
I wanted to pop in and share some pictures I've captured around here lately, but also little bits and pieces about changes we are making to how we operate Polder's Old World Market, and how those changes will hopefully make for an even better experience for all of you.
First of all many of you know that we have been dealing with effects of a wood shortage for a long time now. We were hit unexpectedly by the whole situation, didn't expect it to go on so long when we realized it was a problem, and some of our orders have been significantly delayed because of it-- something we are not satisfied with. Originally we experienced a wood shortage because a huge portion of our wood stock for our business was lost/stolen during our move last fall. Then we went right into a national wood shortage, which compounded the issue.
We have ALWAYS primarily sold made-to-order utensils, meaning that for the most part our customers "pre order" utensils that we make specifically for them after the order is placed. This is how we started the web portion of our business because we didn't know what there would be a demand for, the demand is always shifting from one group of designs to another, and at the time our photography skills were nominal and trying to photograph every single piece we made seemed a bit overwhelming. Selling mostly made-to-order has always worked well for us until recently, but it has become a bit stressful because our on-hand supply of wood is still small and trying to recover from the losses last year (we are cutting and drying wood as fast as we can), and we never know what we will be able to source from elsewhere because of the national shortage of lumber.
For a long time we have wanted to shift to selling mostly ready-to-ship dreamware (where we stock already made pieces on the site) so that the customer can see the exact piece they are buying and we can work more creatively and fulfill orders faster, but we are creatures of habit and haven't ever made the switch. We did create a ready-to-ship section and have slowly been getting our customer base accustomed to shopping it. We feel like it's finally time to make a big shift from selling mostly made-to-order dreamware to mostly ready-to-ship dreamware.
As of right now we haven't closed the made-to-order section, but we have made Fancy Maple temporarily unavailable as a wood option on made-to-order listings and have also temporarily made certain designs unavailable for purchase. I have made some changes on the website to make the ready to ship section far more accessible and "front and center", and we are working on stocking it with more pieces than ever before. We may actually close the made-to-order section as we get closer to the holidays but only if the amount of orders we receive is getting difficult to handle.
We don't want to discourage any orders-- so if you cannot find what you need in the ready-to-ship section and our made-to-order section is open, by all means order what you would like, and you can always message us with inquiries about wood availability and processing time for the order you want to place.
We plan to make the ready-to-ship section MARVELOUS and very convenient, and we hope this makes everyone's experience more efficient and better in every way! We are really looking forward to creating more one-of-a-kind pieces than usual, and being more creative with the pieces we make out of our small stock of extra fancy wood. We are *almost* through with fulfilling all of the orders that have been delayed by the wood shortage and it feels very freeing to shift to this new system!
Currently the website is stocked full of beautiful pieces that are ready to ship out to you within a week! I will be adding many new items over the next few weeks and we will try to keep it fully stocked during the Holiday shopping season. Our goal is to ship same day or next day as frequently as possible. Made-to-order items are on extra long processing time right now, though customers are still shopping from that section regularly so at some point it may get closed as we approach Christmas.
I want to reiterate again that if you don't see what you want in the ready to ship section at any point you can ALWAYS message us and request a special order or for us to add certain designs to the ready to ship section!
Okay, I hope that explanation wasn't too exhaustive and made sense! Please let me know if you have any questions, or what you think about this change! I think in the end it will be so much better for all of you to be able to see the exact piece you're purchasing, and better for us not to have to deal with stressful shortages of wood for pieces that have already been ordered/paid for.
Enjoy the fall pictures I've included and have a very happy day!