How to sell Quilts – Some ideas and helpful hints.
In this article I talk about how to sell quilts which are special, the quilts you have spent a lot of time over, ones which are a unique design, and most importantly quilts that you don’t want to sell cheaply i.e. you want your work to be recognised.
Setting the price.
There are several ways you can work out the price of your special quilt.
1. Assuming you have kept a record of your materials and time, you set yourself an hourly rate, add your materials costs, then add it all up and set your selling price from there.
2. Or, review your records for all your quilts, and set a price based on a square foot, or square 30cm. This way once you have this base set, you will not have to keep records for each quilt.
3. Research the competition. Etsy does have a lot of US shops though there are very few Quilts for sale made in NZ or Australia. (Note you can refine your search by selecting Location.) In New Zealand there is felt, trademe and in Australia, The Hand Crafted Shop and Gumtree. Though neither of these are really set up for offering quality handmade quilts. There are also several smaller online options as well.
Where and How to sell Quilts – The difficult part.
The market for high priced handmade quilts is actually quite small, the buyer must have an appreciation for the design and the beauty of hand made quilts and be prepared to pay accordingly.
1. Via an Art Gallery. This is often used for Art quilts and Wall hangings. Typically a gallery will take a 40% commission.
2. Via your local Quilt Show. This can be a viable option, as those attending these shows already have an appreciation of your work. There is usually little or no commission, though you probably need to be a member of the group putting on the show.
3. Online via the sites mentioned above.
4. Online via your own website. The challenge with this, is how do you get people to find your site. This works best if you are a well known designer, teacher and have a high profile, so you can drive visitors to your site.
It is very difficult to sell your quilts as a business, apart from small Cot quilts, and even then you will earn less than the minimum wage.
I personally believe it is best to just enjoy your quilting, accept that this is a fantastic hobby and take pleasure in giving away your quilts.