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Let's be ambitious!!

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  • Let's be ambitious!!

    Hello everyone!!

    I'm excited to be a part of this forum but also want everyone to have a great pre-xmas period. There is absolutely no reason why we all shouldn't - presents need to be bought don't they? As a professional designer I can often see at events where some other exhibitors fall flat with sales etc. I have a few theories (I have been doing this a few years...)

    Check area of event - demographic of customers (if it is affiliated with a farmer's market, this is good. Posh sausages etc)

    I hate it when other exhibitors undersell themselves. Selling things for 2 or 3 pounds (when they're clearly worth a lot more) is a disgrace. It undervalues yourself, your work and makes everyone else look rubbish too. You absolutely cannot sell things you have made yourself for something less than a piece of mass produced tat from a high street shop, or worse, a pound shop. I raised my prices a few years ago, and I sell consistently and it is my 100% full time living.

    Please have literature printed, professionally, not hand written scribbles and also CHECK SPELLING!!

    If this sounds like a rant, then I guess it is. I just wish some 'crafters' (not sure I like that term, sounds a bit patronising) or 'designers' had more faith.

    On that note. Hello everyone, and good luck for Christmas 2009!! xxxx

  • #2
    I could not agree with you more.
    I Melt Glass For a Living


    • #3
      I agree Helen and this is what I think over time has happened to craft fairs, they have come to represent cheap which is not the case. Although have not sold much at fairs this year there is no way I am going to slash my prices just to sell, have a new year sale maybe but at realistic reductions not selling at a lost.

      One fair I went to a lady had made bookatrix cards and was selling them for a £1, she could not be making her materials let alone time.

      I wear a company badge and my title is Owner and Designer although craft is in my company name, I still consider myself a designer and maker of all my product line, we need to value ourselves highly, be professional adn maintain the standard of what we do and sell, both in the product and the prices. I have a info sheet framed on my stall explaining that I make all the items myself and no bought in goods for sale.

      Perhaps along with the handmade pledge we should have one for a standard flag for Craft in the UK.


      • #4
        I agree with everything that has been said and have nothing to add other than - What an excellent thread!

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        • #5
          Oh, I am very ambitious


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          • #6
            Hi Helen and to the forum


            • #7
              Hi Helen to the forum.

              I agree with handmade is not cheap; I just think some people are scared they will get no sales if they dont sell at a price they are sure will go! Hope they head you're advice!



              • #8
                I completely agree with this too.
                I did my first craft fair at the weekend and although didn't sell a huge amount I was not going to compromise my prices just to sell stuff. I got some quite negative comments from friends and family when I first told them how much I was charging (£10 for a 10x8 mounted original print). They seemed shocked that it was so much.
                I only sold one print the 1st day, but that was probably due to display and marketing than price. I did yield and reduce the price to £8 on the 2nd day and did sell three. However, they were expecting £3-4. No way. It costs me £1.50 in materials, add on time for taking pictures, editing and packaging.
                I do think some people expect something for nothing, especially at the moment.


                • #9

                  ...I think the point is if you wrap something up well - display, graphics, logo - do it all as professionally as it should be then you should be confident in asking the prices. Personally £10 seems very cheap for a print. Again, I will use the example of IKEA. You cannot be cheaper than them!!! If they're not buying you have the wrong people or you were not confident enough with your display and selling style.


                  • #10
                    I'm very ambitious and don't undersell myself one bit....

                    but at the same time i offer people what they want, value for money and affordable prices , it works for me ,we make very good sales

                    the key is too find a way of selling that you comfortable with and that has a good profitable turn over

                    out of interest Helen what craft do you do ?
                    Cinderella is proof that a new pair of shoes CAN change your life !!

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                    • #11

                      I totally agree with everything everyone has said....I visited a craft fair at the weekend and there was someone there selling crafts similar to my own at HALF the price!!! How on earth does she do it???? I,m so glad I didnt book up for that one!!! I have a nice little turnover with my goods and to be honest I find that cheap doesnt always sell better!!!!


                      • #12
                        A word of caution. It depends on what is next to what you are selling, where you are selling, and who to.
                        Take a tile pendant. Selling for £3. My friend sells tiles for £12 each - she sells lots of pendants as people want her tiles, decide they can't afford them but buy the pendant as the cheapest alternative on her stall. Her 'audience' are grown ups.
                        I sell a tray full (and I mean full) of little things selling for 50p, ditto for £1 and £2. I cannot sell her pendants (and it's not through lack of trying). 70% of my customers are children. That pendant is one of my most expensive children's items and lies there unbought.

                        I take back the where because we occassionally do the same fairs.

                        So the potter who prices at £3 has had about £50 out of me whereas the one who priced at 50p to £2 has gone over the £1,000 now and I'm about to reorder. It's sad because I really like them both and would have liked to do well for both of them.



                        • #13
                          all about the market...

                          hey Beckyboo, I'm a jeweller. I think really it comes down to being honest about whether what you make is what people want in the first place. I briefly had a textile design business and while I sold some pieces, got work in the national press etc etc, it wasn't enough for a full time living, which is what I so desperately wanted - I'm a much happier self-employed person than an employed person. I've learnt that fairs are not the be all and end all, and prefer to use the 'fingers in pies' way of gaining anough sales to live - email shots, web promotions, press releases, trade orders...and...fairs/markets/shows, whatever you want to call them are just a small part of this.


                          • #14
                            Hi and welcome to the forum, I completely agree but after a shocking summer of sales I may have taken on a view tactics like that to sell some stock to help pay the bills

                            My attempt at something beautiful


                            • #15
                              I totally agree with everything written here. So many crafters undervalue thier work and totally underprice it. I think it's because we always tend to criticise our own work and always want to achieve the perfect piece of jewellery, card, etc.

                              The bottom line for me is, like Helen, my jewellery making is a business and I must make a profit.

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