What's your worth?

There has been so much talk lately among jewelry designers who sell on-line about copying other's work. O.k., so you think you're the first to come up with some new design? Then go ahead and get in copyrighted. Pay the $30.00 fee, fill out the application, etc. You know what? People of all walks of life have been making jewelry since the Egyptian times. Know what I have to say, get over it, move on, life's too short.
BUT, this is NOT what I'm here to talk about today. I stand on my soap box today with the issue of jewelry makers who price their creations too low.
I've recently talked with a fellow on-line jewelry designer who said the same thing as me and agrees. She sees many other's selling quality made jewelry at discount prices.
So I have to say, "what's your worth (as a jewelry artist/designer)? Do you want to make .50 cents per item you make? And have to turn out 20-30 items to feel like you've made some money?
Let me say this, you are not only doing yourself a disservice, but hurting handmade businesses as well.
Maybe you're not sure what to charge for your work. It has been written that (generally speaking) most jewelry designers try to establish themselves with a "pay rate" of around $20.00 per hour.
There are MANY formulas available for pricing your work. A great resource to get is Viki Lareau's book, "Marketing and selling your handmade jewelry".

How much are you spending on supplies? How much (time) was your labor? What is your overhead? What is your (actual) profit you would like to make? What is your wholesale price? (as apposed to retail)
If you have no idea what I'm talking about, then I strongly suggest that you get a copy of Viki's book and study it!

Do you want to sell to local shops, art galleries? Well, you will never be able to make a profit if you are pricing your jewelry too low, because you will not be able to offer wholesale pricing to business owners. (They need to make a profit too.)

Another fantastic resource I would like to recommend is Rena Klingenberg's book,
"Ultimate Guide to Your Profitable Jewelry Booth".
Jump right in to chapter 3 for pricing your jewelry.
I believe that there is enough room for everyone to make a profit, and has a reasonable home business. Let's just be smart about it. We need to support our handmade home businesses. Don't let the present economy become a major "fear factor" for you. There ARE people out there who appreciate the artisan quality and originality of a handmade design. And they will buy! Especially if your on-line business reaches all around the world, just think how many people have the opportunity to see your work.

I hope that I've stirred up something in you that will make you go out and spend some time learning about marketing your business. I think I'll get off my soap box, for now anyway.


Anonymous said…
Cindy, this is a wonderful article, and you need to let people know about it. Are you on twitter? If so, please let me know so that I can help you promote it. My twitter name is foxygknits.
cindy said…
No, I'm not on Twitter. Feel free to send people over to my blog if you like.

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