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Crafty Corner If you are creative, love to knit or crochet, paint, or just enjoy making fun stuff with your kids, this is the forum for you.

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Old 11-26-2002, 01:02 PM
Lisa Fields's Avatar
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Exclamation Just need to vent!

Hi all. I have had a craft business on line for a not quite a year and I'm not doing really well, only 1 or 2 orders a month, so I thought I would jump start things by doing some local Christmas craft fairs. I did one Friday night and one all day Saturday, both at local schools. These were my first ever craft fairs and I get so many compliments on my stuff that I was sure my stuff would sell like the dickens. I borrowed money from my mother to enter and buy some extra supplies. I spent three sleepless nights staying up to get my displays ready. I fought three children, one with a horrible cold, as dh was working and I didn't have a babysitter. And.............I didn't sell a single thing. Now my confidence is shot, I can't afford to repay my mother, and my husband is mad at me for "wasting more money on this craft junk". :mad: Then, to make matters worse, the following day I went to another craft fair that I couldn't get into because I didn't have the permits they required, and there were so many people there you could hardly get through the aisles. Ugh!!!
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Old 02-02-2004, 01:15 PM
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Pinkie Winky craft shows

I do about 25 craft shows a year. Mostly in the Illinis, Wisconsin area. Fall and Christmas shows are the best. Spring and summer shows it is like pulling teeth to make sales. I have found local high schools and churches to be the best. They have a following of shoppers. I have tried the big mall shows and done poorly. Personalized items are always a good seller. I made about 100 small wooden ornaments whick I personalized for $2.00 each.. This brought people to my table and other sales came from it.
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Old 03-03-2004, 12:09 PM
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We just recently started selling our crafts officially. We have a consignment booth at a Craft and Antique Mall in a tourist area of 2 million visitors a year. We've done fairly well I guess you could say. This is something anyone going into crafting business might want to check into if you have one in your area, if you don't you might want to think of getting financing and starting one.

The owner has 150 crafting booths plus booths in the basement for the antiquers. Oh and they have a rule, no 2 crafters can sell the same kind of thing except candles. She charges between $25.00 to $150.00 per month depending on the booth size in rent each month, 6 month contract. They also charge 5% commission. For all that you set up your booth and they do all the selling, collecting and paying the taxes and cut you a check 2 X a month. No haggling with customers over price or anxiously waiting to see if someone comes to your table.

Hope this helps.

Anna
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Old 06-29-2004, 06:20 AM
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Thanks for the heads up Anna

I have been really putting alot of hard work into getting my home-based biz off the ground, and i'll tell you it has been a long haul and i know it is not over yet.I am located in central WV and seeing your right next door in ohio you might know a bit about WVand the financal background this poor state has. Now i do a fairly well in the sewing dept of my biz, especially since Dec of 2003. and it stays somewhat steady making scrub tops for a few of the local nurses. I was thinking about listing some on ebay, just the seasonal kind like halloween and easter kinds. I alos do formal wear alterations and even make a few formals on occassion, but this is not enough to pay the bills that steadily come in.
I have really got into scrapbooking in the last 4 years and have even become and instructor for Leaving Prints. I love their products. I have taught scrapping at the local college this past march and had a blast, but still not enough to pay the bills.
I am really into all crafts, wood working, sewing, scrapping, handmade cards, doll making (my own designs mostly)that is how i got the name minicrafter LOL. well i have tugged at you ear long enough. If you have any suggestions that might help me get this in full swing , it'd be much appreciated. BTW I am funding this biz with no outside monies.

Thanks Bonnie
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Old 06-29-2004, 07:37 AM
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Bonnie-

Glad to see you found your way over here. I definitely would put the nurse scrubs on ebay, what a wonderful idea! Unfortunately I don't know alot about WV other than like Ohio folks are still struggling. For your area ebay might truly be the best thing or travel to Ohio and go to some of our flea markets for some extra cash. There is one down where my mall is at that we passed last Saturday that was absolutely jam packed with cars lined up! Between Lancaster and Logan, Ohio. Another suggestion is business cards I got mine from VistaPrint 250 for like 5.95 or if you are good with the computer buy the smaller packs at Staples and make your own. I use those for my price tags... Homecroft Holler Crafts and then item description and price along with my business email addy for possible reorders. My mall does restock for you for an additional $10.00 a month so if you think you would be interested pm (private message) me and I'll give you their information. There are 2 craft consignment shops there within 5 minutes of each other with similiar in price.

We do woodworking, wine bottle incense burners, candles, soaps, toiletries, handsewn Country Dammit Dolls, handmade clocks with made in the usa parts, just to name a few things... my list is always growing as I get new ideas.

Anna
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Old 07-08-2004, 11:39 AM
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Hi all, Just wanted to pop in here and say a few words. On e bay you can post a secret miniumin(sp) you will take for something , if you don't get it you don't have to sell. I watch the bids on stuff. A lot of times they bid it up above value. I am going to start selling on e bay with in a month myself. As soon as I finish closing my Craft Supply Store. I don't have the capital I need to continue it . I am going to go back to selling my paintings...tried and true. Anyway , my thought are you need to hit a target market. Try High end selling. Golf courses and country clubs. Setting up for a Special event will help them as well as you. Talk to any one and everyone about your product. Craft fairs like OSI said where you rent by the month. Or taking orders. I have several customers who sell strictly by word of mouth through the hospitals (dr. & nurses). A lot of times the gift shops in the hospitals will buy you items outright. Have you own Craft sale ..like a garage sale. If you don't have enough stuff pool with your friends.......then set the date. Graduation or holiday or whatever theme you think will work. Christmas in July...Buy you gifts now ,plan ahead. That type of ad placed in the garage sales or Craft listing might help.
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Old 07-19-2004, 01:56 AM
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Lisa, I'm so sorry you had such a big disappointment! It's got to be aggravating to put so much time and money into something and get no return for all your trouble.

I've been thinking about selling on eBay, too. I've made cloth "Country Lady" dolls in the past, and I sold quite a few to coworkers at the hospital I worked at back in TN. Sold them too cheaply, I'm sure, but I enjoyed making them and these were my friends, after all.

I haven't made any since I moved out to WA almost 4 years ago, but I'm at home all day now, on disability, and it would not only give me something to fill my days besides watching the History Channel and old movies with my DH (not that that can't be fun!) but a wee bit of extra $$$ would be handy, too, of course. I've been seriously considering getting my patterns out and starting sewing.

Have any of you sold crafts on eBay? My worst part of selling is determining how to price my work. The materials cost for my dolls is pretty low, but there's quite a bit of niggling handwork on them, such as handpainted faces and hand-sewing on lace and other trim, that I think I ought to get myself compensated for. LOL So I'd probably want to set a reserve price for them on eBay, but how do I determine what the minimum I'd sell one for is?

I know the sort of crafts mall you're talking about, Anna; we had some back in FL that friends of mine sold at. They're a really great idea, but I don't know of any near me. I'd rather do something like that, I think, than sell online; the owners do all the selling for you, so that's a worry off your shoulders. If there are any near you, Lisa, it'd probably be well worth looking into. You basically just have to supply your items and set up your booth, and they pretty much do all the rest for you, and the cost is usually reasonable, if not downright cheap! Depending on what you've been paying per month for your website, you might even cut down on "overhead."
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Old 07-19-2004, 07:34 AM
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roisindubh-

Oh I agree... consignment is great. Ours after you do the initial set up, you really never have to go back. For a $10.00 stock up fee, you can mail, UPS, FedEx, etc. your products there and they will restock for you.

Anna
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Old 07-25-2004, 05:59 PM
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ebaying

I can sure sympathize with you about not charging what it is worth. I have sold my self short on numerous occassions, but since it is a way of life for my extra income I have learned the formulas of other crafters. Now I don't want to say you have to use this formula but it is just one method of calculating. I take my cost of materials say for a nursing scrub top(which I do make and sell) the average amount of materials cost me $3 a yard and it takes 2 yards to make small to large size a bit more for larger. So I have initially $6 plus tax already invested. Then it takes labor hours to cut out, and piece together that is about another1 1/2 hours. I charge $7.00 hour for sewing (that is my going rate, always) unless it is just an alteration, then by the job. so my total for a top will be $10.50 labor and $6 materials for the grand total of $16.50 a top. Now if i am going to sell on ebay what i do is charge a flat rate of $3.85. that is for priority envie. But if you need to get an idea of postage to list, just take it to post office and have weighed(including item, box and packing materials)

hope this made sense
Bonnie
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Old 08-03-2004, 04:27 PM
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I've been debating on putting my items I've been making in a consignment shop here in my very small town. It just opened and It is only open friday- sunday. It only cost $25 a year and another $25 for them to put stuff on Ebay. they have a 25% comission. I know its a good price but I don't know. I've been making hemp jewelry the last month and it is selling very well at work and my mom has been taking items to work and calling me with orders. I also took some to a friend of mine that owns a tanning salon and she called me today and said bring me more. I have also got into personalizing keychains and stuff with the Local schools. My husband also does woodworking and he has done craft shows and did a local flea market for awhile. but summer time is slow. everyone says what do you have to lose? Its only $25 and you can make that back easy. I've never put my stuff in a consignment only sold things to people I know. I did put a few things in craft shows with dh but nothing major. I guess I will probally do it .
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