Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Selling Your Crafts

Okay I am sick of writing about Demand Studios so have to do a positive post today.

I will preface by saying I worked in crafts full time for probably 15 years or more. I owned my own craft shop, taught painting at Micheals, Hobby Lobby and in my own store. I also had a gig painting live on the noon news in Illinois. I just want to give some background so that you know I am not yanking your chain.

A few days ago I attended a local craft show to sell my homemade jam. At this craft show were no less than 5 brand new crafters. And it showed. Because of the bad economy many people are starting a side business of crafts to supplement their income. Which is a great thing. But I see so many newbie mistakes! I really wish I could have gathered them in a circle and given them all some tips of what I have learned over the years. I didn't have the guts to do it so I am going to start a series of blog posts on owning a craft business.

Okay I posted previously that the real money in crafts is publishing your own patterns. But lets say you just want to make your stuff and sell it. This is for you. My top tips.

Color means everything. You must stay on top of color trends especially if you are painting or making any kind of craft that includes color. Should you make for example candles in the wrong color pallete you will have a hard time selling them. Heres a hint--jewel tones are always good. People love jewel tones. Midnight blue, deep burgandy, etc etc.

Price is everything. Anything over 20.00 is going to make people think long and hard about buying it. Anything over 25.00 they are going to think even harder. Anything 15.00 and under is going to sell well. Anything under 10.00 is going to sell really well and quickly. I am not saying to underprice your items as that will get you no where. But you have to have a variety of prices so that you hit every range. Have a few items in the higher range, many items in the middle and a ton of items in the lower range. Its all about variety.

Booth. Your booth is your first impression. A full booth is best but do not go crazy and fill it so full that buyers get overwhelmed. There is a fine line between the two. Hopefully you will star the day with a stocked booth and end the day with a semi bare booth. If you start the day with a bare looking booth people just walk on by without looking.

Okay this is getting long so I will end with this tip. If things slow down have a friend (hopefully 2 friends) gather around your booth and look at something intently. People walking then wonder what those people are looking at and they gather around. Pretty soon you have drawn a huge amount of attention to your booth. Now hopefully this happens naturally but sometimes you have to create it. I was lucky when I lived in Kansas to have a lot of family that always hung around my craft shows. Anytime things got slow they would gather around the front of my booth and create interest.

More later

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