How to Sell Your Crocheted Items

If you are like me and you really get into crocheting you will come to a point when you do not want to keep everything you crochet. First of all, your house will only hold so much and secondly you really do not need innumerable afghans, potholder, dolls, doilies etc. cluttering up. At this point you have two options; you either give your homemade handiwork away as gifts or you attempt to sell them.

If you are thinking about trying your hand at selling; one of the first things you will want to know is how to price your items. It might appear to be easy to some yet to others and myself, I know this was one of the biggest struggles I had with marketing anything I wanted to let go of.

If I price to high, I might scare potential buyers. On the other hand, I do not want to price to low, I do want to be compensated for all my time, skill and work that was involved.

When I sell something there are certain things I always do. First, I make small folding cards that has the following information on it.

Front of the card :

Crocheted by Pamela
blog: Crochetingwithpassion.wordpress.com

On the inside:

Name of the piece (example Rainbow Afghan) ( or doily, vest, doll, etc)
type of yarn used
price
care Instructions

By doing this I know that at least the buyer now knows that the item is homemade and the type of yarn use before they even get to the price. Some yarns are more expensive then others. Secondly, the care instructions are always a good idea. Care instructions can be found on the yarn labels. I do not want the buyer to get home and destroy the piece after the first month because they did not know how to wash an item. Also the longer the item will last can help maintain a good name for you.

Following this I always store the item inside a plastic bag until I am ready to display it. This will help keep it clean and looking like new while it is being stored.

Now moving on to what do I charge? There are a few ways to determine what to charge, but in pricing you must also remember crafters very seldom receive the worth of the time invested in their craft.

Also often it seems that when it comes to yarn, buyers really have no idea how much yarn can cost these days. Buying enough to create a project, depending on the project and yarn, can be a pretty substantial chunk. You do want to at least get the cost plus a little extra for the time you put into making the item. So lets discuss three ways some people come up with pricing.

First you should do some searching and see what other people are charging. I always look up at least five different sources. This should give you a good basis to go by.

Second, some people will take a base rate times their time to come to a solution of what to charge. For example, Sally crocheted for thirty hours to create an afghan and she wanted to charge $7.50 an hour for her time. (Example: 7.5 x 30 = 225) Sally sold her afghan for $225.00.

The third way is the rule of thumb I usually take ninety percent of the time. You should calculate the total cost of making the item. Make sure you add all your supplies, buttons, yarn; anything that you had to go buy to create that Item then you multiple by 3. I add .50 for each folding card but if I had to buy a hook I usually do not add that. Example: $55.00 for yarn and .50 for the card brings us to a total of $55.50. (Example: 55.5 x 3 = 166.50) Now in this case Sally sold her Afghan for $166.50.

Other things to consider when selling, never sell your homemade craft items with yard sale stuff. It has been my experience when people are shopping garage sales they are looking for a good buy, not a specialty item. I have found I alway had better experience selling my items with all new things surrounding them. I learned this after a few failed attempts myself so I just made this a rule. I either sell new or used items, but never at the same time.

Second, consider your location, if you are in an area that is lower income or an area where crafts are not really valued; you might consider selling your items on the internet.
However if you choose to sell through a third party and not on your own, I strongly suggest you read all the rules governing that web sight before committing. Always practice safety and discernment when doing on-line sales. I never want to meet a buyer at my house and always pick a public location for business meetings. I never meet anyone alone. I would also suggest setting up a special email account just for your business with a different password then what you usually use.

You also might want to consider a consignment shop. Many people have great success at this without the overhead of fair costs and the time invested in working a table.

Word of advice, crochet your best when you sell. Crochet as if you are entering a fair and trying for the blue ribbon. Even if you are only making a dishcloth, avoid cutting corners. People prefer to buy quality products and you do not want to offer poor quality stuff. You only have one name and you will want to protect it. Make sure when you are finished, what you crochet is sturdy, durable and professionally finished. You do not want to see any yarn ends or frayed edges.

If you know any other suggestions, please share. These are just a few suggestions that over the years I have heard about or that I have personally tried myself.

Good luck and until next week keep those hooks flying.

 

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About crochetwithpassion

I have been certified through the Craft Yarn Council both in teaching and Instructor. I also have been teaching people to crochet for over fifteen years. This is what I will be doing through this blog. In the Crochet Master Class there are 18 projects. Some of the projects will be familiar to me such as Hairpin Lace; Tunisian Crochet; Filet Crochet; Double Ended Crochet; painted Crochet; Aran Crochet and Irish Crochet. However there are several in the book that are new and have peaked my interest and that includes the following: Woven Crochet; Tapestry Crochet; Entrelac Crochet; Fashion Crochet; Tassels; Bullion Stitch; Overlay Crochet; Bead Crochet; Bruges Crochet; Free-form crochet and Wire Crochet. Since Crocheting is a time consuming craft I will only be posting once a week. If you are like me and love to crochet but would really like to challenge yourself to go beyond what you are now doing, come along with me and move to the next level. Although the actual patterns will not be posted (copyright law) I will take you through each project and go through the process of each one. This is not a blog about free crochet patterns or selling crochet tools. What I would like to do is take you with me on the journey through this book as I learn and crochet each of 18 projects. I will attempt to crochet each project in the book, and in the process recording in detail my progress and the problems I encounter along the way and the process I went through to accomplish each project. I am hoping that you will not only learn from my experience but that it will inspire you to push yourself to the next phase in your crocheting skills. Until next time; keep those hooks flying.
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28 Responses to How to Sell Your Crocheted Items

  1. LeeAnne says:

    Thanks Pamela those are great suggestions on how to price items, I have seen handmade shawls priced for $30 & $40 and was amazed but knowing the time and money that goes into such am item it shouldn’t be surprising:-) I think what surprised me really was that you could get that much from a handmade item. Thanks so much for your great insight and sharing them with us.

  2. Lee Anne I am glad you found this post useful. Over the years I have made several mistakes when selling my items, but we live and learn. I am hoping to prevent some people from making the same errors that I made along the way.

  3. Thank you for sharing your experience, I keep having thoughts about selling but have been unsure about pricing so your advice has been really helpful.

  4. I am glad you found this post useful. It is a wonderful feeling to sell something that you labored over. Good luck in you new adventure in the world of selling.

  5. ivg says:

    you can sell your stuff here:

    http://www.goods4all.com

    also you can sell worldwide

  6. I do not know much about your sight..will have to check it out…

  7. Well said thank you !!!!! I just found you on google the first page :))

  8. Teresa says:

    thanks fab advice but one question…what is a consignment shop?

  9. Retail store that specializes in consignment sales. Consignment shops provide customers with a place to display and sell their merchandise (either new or second hand). The shop will decide what they are willing to sell and for what price. After the sell has been completed, the consignment shop and the owner split the profits or sometimes the owner will take a percentage of what the item was saled for. If an item does not sell after a certain period of time, the owner has the ability to retrieve the items from the consignment shop.

  10. erica says:

    Thank you for your advise

  11. Hameeda says:

    Hi I hope you or someone out there can help me

    My mother in law is downsizing n has a large collection of doilies which were gifted to her also she has a few personal pieces she made as a young girl some of which are embroidered n cross stitched very well
    Can anyone advise me on whether I can get them valued or of a place where I can sell them for her ?

    • kristine says:

      Hi there just thought the best place to sell items like this is a website called esty.com it specialises in vintageneral and hand made items.

  12. I am not really sure where to tell you to sale your items. I can tell you to stay away from Ebay and Craigs list – they are only looking for bargains on there. I have had better luck at craft fairs in larger communities, on the internet and you could try a consignment shop for crafts – I have had good luck with them if they are in a community of the higher income bracket. I am sorry I could not of been of more help.

    • Eva says:

      I have purchased items from Etsy.com. I have also set up an account to sell my items but since I am just getting started, I have not put anything on the site.

  13. Natalie says:

    This is good advice. I wonder if it would be a good idea to have a completed example ready to ship with the option for custom colors, for the sake of spending money on the materials only when there is an order.

    It seems to me that making smaller items is more profitable because people may not think a ton about spending $20 where they would about $200.

  14. Heather says:

    I wonder if you displayed a few skeins of yarn with their price tags so people will understand why you’re charging more than Walmart. We have a specialty shop here in our community and the prices are quite high for good yarn.

    • Bari says:

      Heather, send them to theskeincolordials.com. There are but a handful of yarn sellers on that site and they can find use them to find the yarn they like in the dials. When they do that, they will see just how prices run. Hope that helps! =)

  15. Natalie: It is a good idea to have the completed example and then to take custom orders. This will lower your overhead. I love crocheting afghans, but it would not be wise just to crochet the larger projects. The wise move is to crochet several same projects I think might sell, then to have a few large ones. You are on the right track in your thinking.

  16. Heather: If you want to put out example of the yarn you use, you can have them as part of your display. I think that would be pretty. What I try to do is put things on a level that most people can understand. Most people have no concept that is different yarns or the price of them. There are a few things that you can do to help people become aware of the cost when you are showing your work. When I am showing a piece I usually I compare yarn to fabric when I am talking to people. This yarn is like the cotton of fabric or this yarn would be like the Cashmere of fabric. I also usually stress the fact that it is home made. And lastly, I always have a card with each thing I sell, it will always have the type of yarn used listed on it and the washing instructions. Some of the more expensive yarns are hand wash only and drip dry. When I am explaining this to people it gives me another opportunity to stress the fact that the yarn is on the more costly side without coming out and saying I spent this amount on making this item.

  17. britt says:

    This information really helped out thank u so much I’ve been wanting to sell my crocheted work for awhile now after I catch up on gifts. Thanks for the advice

  18. Laudia ann says:

    Thanks for sharing with me.

  19. I am so glad you all found this post useful.

  20. Sakeenah says:

    Thank you for the great advice. It is really helpful. I shared it on Twitter using your share button and it said ” via @LoveCrochet” Is that your account name also?

  21. Thank you so much for the kind words, I am glad you found the information useful. Thank you for re-posting.

  22. Nicole says:

    I would suggest to everyone that is selling there items (not online) to always itleast take half upfront when making a custom order. I have put my crochet items in my friends store and a woman requested a custom order, my friend told me so I got to work. When I finished I put it in her store and the woman still hasn’t gone to buy it! Not to big of a deal since someone else could buy it, and it was a small project, but still annoying to make something in specific colors for the person and have them not buy it. I have also heard to add up all your yarn multiply by three and add $20 for your price.

  23. Thank your for the suggestions, sometimes the best advice comes from personal experience. I hope you items sale.

  24. Good luck on you store!!!

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