When I ran with the idea of starting local, area furniture painting groups, the Furniture Painting Collectives, it was for a variety of reasons. As the founder of the Furniture Painting Business Tips group I saw another need for furniture painters.
I am a social person and enjoy the different furniture painting Facebook groups but I thought it would be nice to connect with local painters with the idea of networking and collaborating with each other. That's when I began forming the Furniture Painting Collective groups for different areas. At this time we have approximately 30 groups formed.
The FPC groups are here to ask questions and offer advice to others about painting techniques, tools, products, staging, pricing and listing. You can even show off your newly finished project!
Every area faces different challenges when it comes to sourcing pieces, pricing, and selling. I don't buy into the idea that "one size fits all" when it comes to these issues. My market in Houston is much different than it would be in Mud Lake, Idaho! We needed a resource to help us face these challenges on a local level.
I firmly believe that a group can offer constructive, simple advice but no one should ever consider this as the only "right" way to do something. We have different levels of expertise and it's great to offer an opinion, but that is all it is.
In our personal furniture painting business we like to paint large dressers. Many painters don't have the space, strength, or capability to do this. We don't like to paint tables or small items. But, we get asked to do this all of the time. As a member of a local group, I refer business to other area painters I trust. I also run across great deals on smalls in different marketplaces and stores and will share them to our group for others to see.
It's encouraging to have a friend in your area that understands your needs and challenges in this business. I often personally message members about issues I have. I enjoy the support and having someone to kick around ideas.
Some of our local FPC groups have taken the initiative to have "meet and greet" events to get to know one another for more personal connections. I love this idea and plan to organize one in my area soon.
Many groups have put together a pricing guideline for their area. This is only a guide and should never be considered a "rule." Yes, we want to encourage every business to make the best profit available but we cannot nor should we tell you what you must pay or charge for pieces.
All advice offered in these groups should be done in a friendly, constructive way. Budding artisans can be crushed by negative comments. We were all beginners at one time and we all still make mistakes. Rudeness is not tolerated in these groups and should be reported to the admins.
There are some FPC groups that have seen the need to start an upscale furniture selling market for their area. As business owners, I encourage all FPC members to join and support this effort. They have some basic, common sense guidelines and rules for staging, pricing and listing. This will benefit you as a seller to get the maximum potential profit for your projects.
Speaking of admins... they are volunteering their time to help out in your group. No pay and often no thanks for what they do. If you have time to help out, please do so.
As members of your group you can help it grow by reaching out to other furniture painting artisans. This will improve your area market and will create a cohesive group of like-minded business owners. If I see a painted piece posted on Craigslist, FB Marketplace, or other BST groups I will privately message the artisan and share the link to our local FPC and the Furniture Painting Business Tips group and invite them to join us. The more members you have, the better your resource!
Take time to visit your group. Share and participate. Make comments, post pics of your latest project, and ask questions.
You are the owner of your business and you are ultimately responsible for your decisions. Getting extra help and having someone to give you a high-five for a job well done can make your day go a little better!
The FPC groups are all linked on the Furniture Painting Business Tips group page. Look for your area group and ask to join. After joining please read the pinned post for the goals and aims of the group.