Sunday, October 25, 2009

How To Put a Price

So aside from sewing bags and such, I sewed this little jumper dress for the B about a week ago. I had seen the awesome owl print fabric at Glen's and just couldn't pass it up. I have a thing for owls. Seriously, they are everywhere in my house. I have statues, planters, cards, ATC's, I have one made out of sea shells, there is one on my key chain.. they are EVERYWHERE. Sorry... off track... back to the dress...

The dress itself came out really cute, but I had major trouble with the button holes for some reason. They look really horrible, but as long as the dress is buttoned, you can't see them, so I'm okay with it.

I've been posting pics of the clothes and bags I've been making on my myspace and since I recently joined the facebook cult as well, I've posted some on there. I hadn't the pics up for one hour before one of my sister's friends on FB messaged me and jokingly (I thought) asked me to sell her a dress like B's. Thinking she was just being nice, I was like, "*Laughs* yeah, I'm a total amateur, so if you don't mind really badly sewn button holes, I can hook you up." She messages back that she wasn't joking at all, that she's been looking everywhere for a dress for her little girl, Analise to wear for thanksgiving and has found absolutely NOTHING that she likes..... until now. She really, really likes the one I made B and wants one just like it and has offered to pay me for it.

This is were my dilemma comes in. I'm HORRIBLE at assigning a price tag on anything I make. I'm always so flattered that anyone likes it enough to pay for it that I'm like, "Really?? You'd PAY for that? You can HAVE it!!!!" And then I'm like on cloud nine because I just made someone's day. I was always like that with my drawings and paintings, I'm the same way with the wood burnings I've done in the past, and now I have to come up with a price tag for this dress. I've also had several people ask me how much I would charge to make them a bag.

I've always thought it would be nice to make a little extra money off of my hobbies, but never really pictured it as a reality. I feel guilty just trying to think of prices. I'm always afraid I'm going to put this number out there and people will think I'm ripping them off or something. So then when I do pick a number I get told I undersold myself. Sheesh. So for the last few years I've just resorted to making things as gifts for people so I don't have to worry about charging.

Do any of you sell anything you make? And if so... how do you come up with the price? How do you do it and not feel all slimy and stuff?

To give you an idea of what it cost me to make B's dress:

I paid $3.49 a yard for the fabric and it took 2 yards to make the dress because of the way the pattern falls and how you have to cut it. I have fabric left over, but it's pretty much scrap because of how it had to be cut.

I paid $1.97 for the buttons which I made out of the scraps of fabric and a button maker.

I paid $1.59 for the interfacing

And then whatever I paid for the pattern which I can't remember because I found it after having bought it like over a year ago.

So, let's say it cost me roughly $10-13 dollars for all the materials to make it.

The dress took me about 3 hours from start to finish including cutting the pattern pieces, cutting the fabric, and sewing the dress and buttons.

How would you price it? Or should I just scrap the pricing and gift it? *LOL*


Tammie said...

the dress is adorable. and so is your little girl. i love her shoes.

ive never sold anything ive made so im totally the wrong person to be commenting. but here i go anyway.....Ha.

you should definitely charge enough to cover the cost of the materials. then i guess you have to decide how much your time is worth, which is up to you. when i sew, i usually love the process. i enjoy it and find it incredibly therapeutic. so if i were to make a dress like this and sell it, id probably only charge about $20. maybe $25 if i think i did an awesome job.

ive bought handmade dresses for my daughter off of Etsy and i usually pay between $15-$28, depending on the style of the dress. the $28 dresses were jumper style and lined with organic muslin. the less expensive dresses were just pillowcase dresses. (this was before i learned how to do it myself.)

and if this gal offered to pay, then i definitely wouldnt gift it. she offered, its an adorable dress. now charge her.

Barefoot_Mommy said...

See I was thinking along the lines of $15-25 dollar range too. I kind of figured up the cost to make and then decided to pay myself minimum wage (here its $7.25) for every hour that I spent working on it.

But as it turns out, I didn't have to bother because she emailed me before i could message her and offered me $45! I was like... um... yeah I was feeling guilty about $25... I don't think I could take $45 for it. LOL

Barefoot_Mommy said...

P.S. I usually really enjoy sewing too. Unless it involves black thread... which for some reason ALWAYS breaks on me. I have bought several different types of black thread and every time I use it, I have to stop fifty bagillion times to re-thread everything.

Plus, I am dyslexic so I often sew things backwards and then have to rip seems. LOL So really... MOST of the time, I love it... but it has been known to become a VERY stressful situation for me. Sometimes you just have to WALK AWAY.

Karen said...

That's an adorable jumper, and it's well worth the $45.

The two methods of pricing I've heard are 1) supplies x 3 and 2) look at similar stuff on etsy.

TAKE THE $45!!!