Blog Update #008 – The State of the Decal Business(Updated April 12th)

So as you may have read; the decal business is gonna grind to a halt for around three months. There’s a variety of reasons for this but the two biggest ones I’ll go into further detail about as to the why’s and hows. What I can definitely assure you and promise you is that both the outstanding orders, the (possibly) lost orders and basically anything up to now will still be handled as if nothing has changed, worry not. Also I’m not gonna stop designing them either, that’s the part I truly love doing to the bitter end so even though the selling stops for a eight to ten weeks, the designing and ever growing catalog will not.

 

Setbacks

That’s the gist of why I’m calling onto a break for a bit; I don’t earn a lot doing this, in fact I regularly just break even and sometimes earn a little more than breaking even, but never so much that this is a self-funding operation, I always have to dig into my own funds to be able to pay for it(or get just enough orders to be able to pay and print the requested decals), if as much as one thing ends up being lost in the mail or is printed with less than desired quality; I’m losing money. That’s basically it, for the most part I’m a glorified middle man with a good instinct for whipping up decal designs – and I’d love to earn more but at the same time, I don’t wanna be peddling the most overpriced bunch of stuff. The downside is the risk and I got pretty lucky across the board until recently.

Either way, from the last batch of orders it seems a fair few of ’em got lost in the mail. Whether or not they actually are as of writing this is still up in the air(here’s hoping, right!) but it’s pretty much gotten to the contingency stage where it’s printing more or money back, either way I’m gonna end up diving into my own pocket to help folks out. Which I don’t mind, of course, people paying for a product should get the product, that’s Business 101 – but it’s not a thing I can maintain for long.

That’s enough reason for me to take a prolonged break from selling stuff, mostly so I can recuperate my funds enough and save up a bit for these kind of circumstances.

Brexit

Reason two is the phenomenon known as “Brexit”, it’s, if you’re unaware, the United Kingdom stepping out of the European Union and with that likely the EU free market. Now I won’t delve too deep into the politics(summary is; it’s a utter shitshow for all parties involved and has no reasonable good outcome in sight) but the general point of it is, as a Dutch person using a company from the United Kingdom(England in specific), there’s a solid chance that with any outcome other than no Brexit at all, I’m paying massive import tariffs on the decal sheets and as I said in the previous paragraph, my profits are so low, even the best case scenario on the imports would make me lose around 20 dollar on every 100 invested. So while I’m still pondering the ideas of for instance raising the prices or something, it’s such a unknown at the moment with the Brexit that there’s no guarantee anything will even happen.

So it’s that uncertainty of whatever the hell they’ll do that’s also a pretty solid reason to lay off the selling for a short while, so I can get my act together on potential future plans as how to manage this and see what time brings for Brexit. It’s planned to occur on March 30th, though as of writing they voted in a possible two month delay so… Yeah, there’s a solid example for “no-one knows what the hell is happening”.

Either way, anyway!

So forgive this absolute rambling and shambles of an article that explains the state of it all, I just wanna assure you that I am not going anywhere and whatever’s already outgoing, ongoing or still going to be done still will be taken care of. Those that got lost will get replaced or refunded, those that still ordered will definitely get their turn still – just closing up for anything new coming in on top, just to give me that bit of breathing room.

On top of that, I do wanna thank everyone who’s stuck with me so far – thanks for actually liking my products and wanting ’em! And thanks for the ever lasting patience, I know I can be a bumblefuck at times with the pressing issues but by God I am getting it done one way or another.

Do keep an eye out as the designs will keep on coming, as mentioned before and if you desperately need something, I do have some stuff on hand(albeit not a whole lot) that might fill the need you got; just email ray@rayskits.com and I’ll see what I can do for ya’.

Update – April 12th ’19

Hooray, good news! The Brexit, half of the source of these problems has been delayed ’til the 31st of October. That’s a heckuvalot of breathing time and in itself brings its own issues, one being the price of the printing(which is dependent on how strong/weak the Pound is opposed to the Euro) which is now more expensive than ever but still manageable as it stands so I won’t be adjusting any prices as of yet. But at least this means unless the shitshow remains a shit, uh, show – business as usual ’til November.

I am on the other hand staying on the break, handing the last handful of orders has rolled well into April already and the time is used on expanding the decal library, finding alternatives and extras to the decals I supply as it stands like getting a plotter to cut out the stuff known as “metal transfers”, which given the process is largely the same from my design end of the spectrum; definitely a neat addition and many, many people would really like metal transfer emblems, trim and logos more so than anything. Another idea I’m actively going to be jumping on is producing license plates on high quality photo paper instead of decals as people prefer the “thickness” of the plates over a decal.

So right now if you’d order a decal set, you’d get a full color print and a second print with blacks, whites, metallic silver and golds. In the future, or near future even I’d like to supply decal sheets with to take the ’77 Pontiac LeMans Can Am set as an example, all the stripes, white letter tire decals and optional interior stuffs as waterslide decals, the emblems, locks, door handles and trim as metal transfers(with decals supplementing those that have colors/blacks on them) and the license plates on high quality photo paper.

Future stuff!

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