[pcp] A Note from Polyform


Edited By Cindy--
I am sending this message through and hopefully it will answer some questions and concerns. I would not like to see any more name bashing or complaining about Polyform or their decisions on this list.
If you have questions or concerns please direct them to POLYFORM and
NOT this list. Thank you for your understanding!!

Hello to the many loyal Polymer Clay Artists & Aficionados...
Well we sure have caused quite a stir here! Let me start by saying
that any questions or concerns that any of you have can always be
voiced to us directly. You may do so by emailing me at
iweiss@polyformproducts.com, and we'll be happy to clear up any
speculation or misunderstandings personally. Hopefully this will
minimize some of the speculation and frustrations down the line. In
the meantime, I'd like to make a one-time statement about some of the
issues that have been raised. Unfortunately, we can't monitor the
boards on a regular basis, but friends of the company let us know
that there are unanswered questions out there, and I hope to be able
to clear some of these up.

First of all, let me assure you that Polyform, and all of our brands,
are in a healthy, vibrant and growing phase of business, our business
is strong, and we are preparing the company for new opportunities in
the coming months and years. Never have we been more positive at the
outlook of not only our company, but the entire polymer clay
category. We are ready for a new adventure, and hope many of you will
be on this adventure with us.

Our partnership with Donna Dewberry has come as a surprise to some.
Let me explain here that this partnership is in no way intended to
displace or minimize efforts by anyone working in the category. Big
questions have come up about whether or not you, who have been doing
polymer clay for years, would be asked to be certified by Donna, who
is newer to the category. The answer is a resounding NO! Many of you
teach in small shops, guilds, high-end art stores, jewelry shops and
the like. The only way we would expect this business to change is by
adding new customers to your base.

We have spent much time in the last 3 years completing national
studies about polymer clay, with both users and its non-users. Today,
polymer clay is a very small percentage of the Craft Industry --
small enough even that it is not reported on in key Industry Studies
from CHA. So we have taken it upon ourselves to complete our own
studies, and have managed it through professional outside research
companies who are able to assure the validity of these studies. We
have done so because we have a passion and love for understanding
today and tomorrow's polymer clay users. In these studies, one
thing was clear... People who do not know polymer clay find the
category incredibly intimidating and difficult. We sought out to
find the best way to educate these consumers, and Donna Dewberry's
name went straight to the top of the list. While Donna does have a
history in clay, she will be the first to tell you that she is NOT
the best artist, either in painting or polymer clay. What Donna's
name means to her followers is "I Can Do It!" She has a brand, a
HUGE following throughout the entire WORLD and many, many loyal
followers who believe she has shown them not only a new craft form,
but a method for creating their own businesses and, as many of her
following will tell you, truly changing their lives. Those close to
her appreciate her approachable, warm, inviting and very real

Some of you have said, regarding our research, "Well you didn't talk
to us!" You are absolutely right. When it comes to making products
and programs for existing users, you will be the ones we'll want to
hear from. We value your input. (And have some exciting things in the
works to that end, as well). But our goal in starting this education
program is about talking to people who have never used clay before.
It's a new group, entirely. For competitive reasons, I can't say any
more about these studies. The information is proprietary and I hope
you will respect our need to keep the information confidential.

What does this mean for you? I hope you will be able to see this as
an opportunity. Donna will not be teaching the sophisticated
techniques that many of you use. She will be teaching beginners
beginning-level projects. By doing so, we know we will broaden the
entire polymer clay category around the world. Once their curiosity
is piqued, many of these consumers will be left wanting more, going
to the next level, desiring to know "how that could have been done" --
and you will be there to guide them into a category that you have
fallen in love with and feel a loyal devotion to. We welcome those
efforts! If anything, these consumers will have a GREATER
appreciation for you and your work. Many of today's non-users still
think of clay as play-doh and haven't touched it since they were
kids. Once they understand what polymer clay actually is, we would
expect everyone -- Polyform, the loyal artist group, even our
competitors, to grow from this, and we look forward to this challenge
ahead. Please hear our heart and intentions when we say that we
believe this partnership is going to benefit everyone.

We understand there have been some discussions here about our
relationship with individuals, both in the artist community as well
as business partners. In all cases, I can assure you that Polyform
has "fired" no one, and in fact our team continues to grow. We have a
strong Artist Endorsement Program and work everyday to place these
unique projects in magazines and online media. While our
relationships with individual accounts are personal, I can say that
we value each of our business partnerships. It should go without
saying that in order to be an ongoing viable business, we can only
ship those customers that are also on a strong business footing. Rest
assured -- more than anyone, we love to ship product! Our policies
are the same from account to account, and we always act fairly. That
is integral to who we are, and will never change.

Finally, while again I can't disclose more information, I can assure
you that there are some VERY exciting products in the works that we
know you will find a welcome addition to the category. You won't see
these in stores for some months, but I assure you that some of the
things we have heard from you for years and years are finally coming
to fruition. Moving into this new stage is a little bit
uncomfortable, and awkward, kind of like making a clay piece in the
dark. Rest assured, when the lights go on, that clay piece is going
to be fabulous, and we hope you'll be ready for the next adventure.

Thanks for your passion, sincerity and loyalty. As always, Polyform
will continue to support those artists that support us. We believe
that the opportunities are great when we work together.


Iris Weiss
Polyform Products


As I mentioned, unfortunately due to limited resources, we cannot
monitor and respond to these boards regularly. We're sorry that
you've been feeling frustrated, but encourage you in the future to
come directly to the source and ask questions. Please email me at
iweiss@polyformproducts.com if you have any further questions.



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