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  • Craft units/villages

    Hi,

    Does anyone here have any experience of running their own craft unit?

    I have been looking at some of the craft villages that are around and wondered if anyone here had ever ran their own unit or visited a village. Are they a good idea or an expensive waste of time?

    Thanks

    Leanna
    www.purethoughts.co.uk
    Natural soaps and skincare, handmade from beginning to end...

    Pure Thoughts Newsletter - Free samples for 50 new subscribers every month

  • #2
    I am tossing up between getting my own store or a unit at a craft village.....Im doing my research at the moment.

    I went to one well known craft village to which I thought would be ideal...rather than spend an hr there I stayed the afternoon...It was mid week with the schools off and I only saw about 20 people in total!! and the poor old dear in the tea shop took ages to take my order...cup of tea n a teacake.....don't think they were used to customers.
    She was ever so sweet and felt like doing it for her.

    I guess you 1st need the right place were theres people to buy your work.

    I have my eye on a up market shop but with up market prices.....I guess you get what you pay for.

    Ask around any craft villages or units of that type...other artists/crafters will be willing to tell you whats what.

    If you get the right place with not too many overheads its worth a try...just do all your homework first.

    Best of luck to you btw

    Some studios let artists share if there big..also means you share the bills and time spent there - unless your using it as a workshop too.
    Debbie
    www.thesilverzebra.co.uk

    Contemporary glass fusion designs - sculptures - wall panels - functional items - outdoor sculptures. We also run Silver & Glass workshops here in Cheshire - kiln space also offered.

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    • #3
      Not quite what you were talking about but I used to sell my cards in a shop that was dedicated to handmade goods. The guy who owned it made his things and then invited local crafters to sell their things in his shop for a monthly fee and a small cut of the profits. It was a great idea but the guy who ran it ended up working nights at Sainsburys to pay the rent on the shop I think it failed because he was a bit of a grumpy person who liked to swear. I don't mind anyone swearing but not in a shop with customers!! He also didn't charge the crafters enough to cover his rent - it cost £5 a month to put your stuff in the shop and then you said how much you wanted for the cards/paintings etc and he would then put his price on top.
      It was in Ripon which is a very nice cathedral city in North Yorkshire and hence is very busy with tourists most of the year but the shop still didn't work out.
      Just thought - there is a craft village/mill near me but the one time I went in it was very, very expensive and I haven't been back.
      Hope this helps
      Lynsey
      Visit my Etsy store http://swirlyarts.etsy.com
      My daily thoughts! http://swirlyarts.blogspot.com
      My blog of cute stuff http://cuteable.com


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      • #4
        I have a friend who is a ceramicist (sp?) who took a part share in a unit but it was in quite an isolated location, on the edge of a large town, but customers had to make the point of driving there and stopping. Despite being home to a restaurant and upmarket homewares shop etc there weren't enough customers to keep it going. A real shame. I think this is a tricky one - it would appear location is everything!
        Mel
        Try a new way every day and work becomes play!

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        • #5
          Thanks for the replys. It appears that some these craft villages are perhaps not as busy as they would like you to believe!

          It's so difficult to know what to do! Soaps and bath products are so touchy feely and they are difficult to sell online when all people can do is read the descriptions I write about them.

          We do really well when we attend craft events in tourist areas. Every person that walks through the door stops and comments on the wonderful smell of the essential oils and our stall presentation.

          I would love a shop but the start up costs are just so high! I can imagine a cute little shop full of pine units and baskets full of soaps and bath melts. i guess that I will just have to keep dreaming for a while!!

          Leanna
          www.purethoughts.co.uk
          Natural soaps and skincare, handmade from beginning to end...

          Pure Thoughts Newsletter - Free samples for 50 new subscribers every month

          Comment


          • #6
            There is a shop very similar to your dream one just off the high street in Bromsgrove (where I lived until recently). It is a very boring high street in general - so generic and boring it actually featured as such on Midlands Today yesterday! Anyway, it was always lovely to walk past - the smell does make such a difference and I often popped in for gifts as there was so little good choice elsewhere. There always seemed to be at least one or two other people in there. Goodness knows what the rates are like in a place like that but at least people are passing - in this example its a pedestrianised area too.
            Mel
            Try a new way every day and work becomes play!

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            • #7
              Thats sounds just like the kind of place I would love. Somewhere people can come in and buy gifts for others or treat themselves or maybe just come in because the shop smells so good!! I have a friend who has just opened her own shop and she has filled it with crafts and gifts, my soaps are on a lovely dresser in the shop and I am just a little jealous!!

              Leanna
              www.purethoughts.co.uk
              Natural soaps and skincare, handmade from beginning to end...

              Pure Thoughts Newsletter - Free samples for 50 new subscribers every month

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi Leanna

                Whereabouts are you based? I'm opening up a Craft / Design / Arts and Interiors centre in Sheffield City Centre.

                Let me know if you would be interested - the more pine furniture the better!

                BR
                Louise
                [COLOR="rgb(139, 0, 0)"]Lu
                Eccentric Designs
                [/COLOR]

                Comment


                • #9
                  craft units villages

                  Hi,

                  Does any one know of a craft village in Aberdeenshire...l am new to the area and from Yorkshire originally where there were heaps of them..Piece Hall in Halifax etc but cant seam to find anything here... like most people on the foum would love have to my own unit but its so expensive....

                  Do any of you know of any craft shops who are looking for stockists...l make candle holders, draught excluders and antler craft in Scotland but need to find outlets or a unit!

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