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View Full Version : How do you know what to charge?


LoveBugAngel
02-15-2012, 08:17 PM
Not sure what forum to put this in, Mods, please feel free to move it to where you see best fit.

I knitted a Valentines Day dishcloth yesterday, it's a seed stitch boarder then has a stockinette stitch bacground with a big heart in garter stitch in the center and then a heart in each corner in garter stitch. It's really pretty but took me about 4 hours if not longer to knit up (I kept making mistakes) It's a larger size dishcloth.

Anyway I posted a photo of it on my facebook and I am getting an overwhelming response of people wanting to buy some off of me. The thing is I have NO idea what to charge.
I paid 3 dollars for a very small ball of cotton yarn which let me knit ONE cloth with it and left me with a bit of leftover yarn (but not enough to make a second)

I mean it almost seems silly to ask for $3.00 for ONE dishcloth, but that only covers the cost of the yarn.

Suggestions?

GrumpyGramma
02-15-2012, 10:31 PM
It sounds like more of a decorative item than a utilitarian one. I can only say that if people want them enough to pay $8 or $10 ea., I'd think about selling some.

For me to sell hand knitted items and feel I'd made anything my price would probably be so high nobody would pay it.

As far as a reasonable price to ask, I hope somebody can give you a better answer.

Antares
02-15-2012, 11:04 PM
Decide how much you want to make (profit) off each dishcloth (over the cost of the yarn, of course), and there's your price. Then, let your friends know how much the yarn cost and how much over this cost making them is worth to you. It may deter some, but if others really want it, they'll pay.

Or maybe you should first decide whether you really want to spend a lot of time making the same thing over and over and over and over again.

(OR you could do a little drawing and just give out one as a freebie!)

Jan in CA
02-16-2012, 01:20 AM
You also have to consider how much someone would be willing to pay for a dishcloth. Cute as it is $8 is a lot for a one dishcloth. You could try $5 so you get a few bucks out of it.

That said.. I personally would tell people I don't sell things, but then for a friend I might just give them one for a gift.

chixdilla
02-16-2012, 12:29 PM
I'm with Jan. I don't think I would agree to sell things because it costs too much money and time to make even small things, and it wouldn't be worth it in the end as far as any money I could get for it. Plus it would take all the fun out of knitting for me. I've only ever knit two things for a friend of mine who offered to buy the yarn, but that's probably the last time I'd do it, unless it's a gift. When people ask me to knit them things, I just laugh and say it's going to cost them $50 and they usually leave me alone after that. I wouldn't charge anything less than $8-$10 for your dishcloth, and if they think that's too much, it's too bad because hand knitted items are expensive, and your time is valuable.

ETA: There's been some discussions on Ravelry as far as charging for knitted items. A lot of people who sell their items professionally like to charge by the yard plus the cost of yarn. So for example, if your dishcloth took you 1oo yards of yarn, and you spent $3 for the yarn, you could charge, say 10 cents a yard, which would make it about $13. So I'd say $8 is more than fair.

LoveBugAngel
02-16-2012, 12:51 PM
Ya see I'm not keen on selling these items but everyone seems to be asking for them or asking for them as gifts. As simple as a dish cloth looks, it does take awhile to make. I made another last night just very simple pattern and my hand was cramping by the end.

Yarn is expensive and my time is precious. I'm worried if I start making items then they will want more and more all the time. I usually buy dishcloths from the dollar store and I get a bundle of them LOL. It seems insane for me to charge $8.00 for one. LOL.

I appreciate all your input regarding pricing. I am just feeling pressured now to make them for others, but I like posting the photos of what I am learning for others to see, but I guess it comes with consequences.

Ps. I posted another photo last night of the simple cloth I made for mom and captioned that it took me 4 hours to do (maybe ppl will realize its not something knit up in 10 mins)

chixdilla
02-16-2012, 12:56 PM
If that's the case, don't do it! Lol. I've been there. The second I made my friend something, I got a few other requests for stuff, and I just said no, sorry. You shouldn't be feeling pressured to do it, I say don't do it if you don't want to. Knitting should be fun! People just don't realize how much work it takes to knit, and how long it takes!

LoveBugAngel
02-16-2012, 01:02 PM
But see my mother is going around saying "Oh aren't they great? I'm so lucky to be getting these. I am sure Angel will take care of you" Mom SHHHH!!!!!!!
If someone is willing to pay me enough then I suppose I would do it. But really I doubt anyone will wanna pay that much for a dishcloth. *sigh* I don't know what to do.

GrumpyGramma
02-16-2012, 02:06 PM
If you're willing to risk having someone take you up on it, price your dishclosth at $35, tell them for the time it takes that's a steal. Put the price with the picture. I don't think you'd get many takers.

Maybe explain to your mom that she merits special favors, you give her handmade items because you love her.

I've seen hand knitted things for sale that were simply beyond my price range but figured whoever got the price was selling their time way too cheaply.

Antares
02-16-2012, 02:22 PM
Angel, STOP! STOP!

You cannot start making these just because people want you to and because your mom is telling them things that aren't true. You're going to KILL your desire to knit in one fell swoop!

Post your pictures online all you want to. Then add a disclaimer that says, "Don't even ask--they're NOT for sale" or "If you want one, here's a link to the pattern!"

And for Pete's sake, tell your mom to stop committing you to something you can't do!!! I'd also tell her (nicely) that if SHE wants to learn to knit so she can make all these folks dishcloths, then she can go for it. But she has no right to promise other people your work.

My mother-in-law does this to me all the time: As in, "Oh, your aunt will make you __________ (fill in the blank)." I just look at her and say, "Oh, I will, huh?" And then I don't do it.

You have more important things to do in life than make dishcloths--even for a price.

Jan in CA
02-16-2012, 02:48 PM
When you agree to sell something then you've agreed to at least somewhat of a timeline and it then becomes work. You've agreed to a price probably far below what you should charge for your time. Knitting is supposed to be fun, but when you start selling it can be work and you can't start on that nifty new shawl, sweater, dishcloth because you have to get these done. Bah.. not for me.

I would tell mom that as much as you appreciate her kudos and you're glad that she's proud of you to please not tell people you'll make anything and tell her why.

Edited to add - I do have a friend that makes custom dog sweaters (for dachshunds), but she has a unique way to handle it and she's not making a cent on it and she never touches a dime. They discuss size and yarn and agree on an amount and then donate to a specific dachshund rescue charity. When my friend gets the receipt she starts the sweater of the colors they chose. I don't believe she has much of a timeline. Not sure, but she's enjoying it and it's a win/win. The charity gets money and she gets to knit. She has no desire or time to do a lot of other things so this works for her.

LoveBugAngel
02-19-2012, 08:51 PM
Edited to add - I do have a friend that makes custom dog sweaters (for dachshunds), but she has a unique way to handle it and she's not making a cent on it and she never touches a dime. They discuss size and yarn and agree on an amount and then donate to a specific dachshund rescue charity. When my friend gets the receipt she starts the sweater of the colors they chose. I don't believe she has much of a timeline. Not sure, but she's enjoying it and it's a win/win. The charity gets money and she gets to knit. She has no desire or time to do a lot of other things so this works for her.

This is so fantastic. I love hearing about people helping out animals. Warms my heart.


As for selling my dishcloths, I think you guys are right. The family friend who taught me when I was 8 how to do the garter stitch is the only one getting dishcloths as a gift. I want to thank her for introducing me to it and show her that after all these years I have discovered a love for it.

I did go a little nuts and buy a ton of cotton yarn to make cloths, I enjoy seeing how pretty they turn out. If I use all the yarn I bought for them my calculations tell me I will end up with 36 cloths HAHA, at that point I MAY decide to sell some of those, but I don't plan on specifically telling people "hey I'm selling these" cause I think I will be way too overwhelmed.