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What to do: Jewelry artists, how to handle touching and trying-on considering the Covid situation?

So, whether or not we may be ready, different places are loosening the shelter in place restrictions.  Not sure when art fairs will be happening for sure or not,  but I'm starting to think about how it will work when customers are actually looking for jewelry again at art fairs.  Has anyone had any thoughts about how to protect ourselves and customers?  Do you think it's going to be possible?  I'm still having a hard time accepting that I'm "elderly" and "high risk!  LOL  Seriously, how will we handle it? I live in Indianapolis where we have a bunch of Covid cases.  How do we handle it when we go to another area where their Covid cases are either many more, or many fewer.  I'm apprehensive, no lying, and feel some responsibility to try to keep from exposing others as well as protecting myself. Anyone else having these thoughts? 

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Comment by Betsy Stafford on May 14, 2020 at 1:45pm

I started using the option with Square that allows me to turn off signatures required. Then using the contactless chip reader, the customer places it in and removes it when sale is approved. The less touching the better! We always keep germ-ex on hand and then wash before Any Snacking! My husband and I have made it through many years and viruses without getting sick. We hope to keep this going!  Hope this helps! Betsy

Comment by Keith Phillips on May 14, 2020 at 1:11pm

I use a UV-C ultraviolet wand to sanitize my cell phone, card reader, and jewelry.  I use the brand Germ Cide X, which is a compact wand that's safe to use and directs the light toward the object you're sanitizing while shielding you from the light itself. There are numerous varieties of these for sale on the internet, but this one was top rated, and works great for $59. All you do is hold it over the surface you're disinfecting for 20 seconds. In case you're interested in more information on this unit, the link for this is:

Hope this helps.

Comment by Kathleen J. Clausen on May 14, 2020 at 11:30am

Great idea about decorative masks!

Comment by Leslie Turner on May 14, 2020 at 10:50am

Make your mask a fashion statement. Use your jewelry design skills to design and decorate masks to match the outfits you wear to shows. Take plenty of sanitizing wipes and make a point of cleaning your phone, tablet, or Square devise, and your jewelry. Have a big bottle of hand sanitizer available for customers to use. Casually mention to each customer (or post a big sign!) that you are VERY serious about protecting each and every one of your customers. Make it about protecting your customers from everyone else, not about protecting yourself from them. Who knows, you make end up taking orders to decorate high end masks.

Comment by Kathleen J. Clausen on May 14, 2020 at 10:47am

You're right Chris.  I hadn't even thought about credit cards.  I've been wondering if any disinfectants would ruin jewelry finishes and whether any residue would be irritating to the skin of the next person who comes along.  I routinely use alcohol swabs when someone tries on earrings, but the time involved to wipe down the whole piece!  I put a lot of my pieces on hand made cards.  Since we know that the Covid germs can live on surfaces for some time, how do I take care of that?  Okay, I'm starting my deep breathing, calming practice!

Comment by Chris Carlson on May 14, 2020 at 9:00am

Along those same lines of protecting ourselves and our customers (I’m also an “elderly” jewelry maker) I’ve been wondering about credit card transactions where I routinely hold somebody’s credit card to read the chip and then hand them my phone to sign. It will sure require a lot more data entry to text them an invoice instead - not to mention the possible security risks of their reading off their numbers to me while I enter them-I guess that problem is based on the assumption of an optimist who thinks people will be wanting to buy jewelry! I hope Square is working on a solution. But our business brings us much closer to our clients than other mediums. There are so many times I’m helping with a clasp or earring and just inches apart from a customer - thanks for starting the discussion - a little brainstorming will be helpful.

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