Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Pricing your work


A couple weeks ago I talked about how to get into shows etc.
The next big thing (and one everyone hates) is to figure out how to price your work.

Sometimes I have seen work so overpriced it boggles my mind, but a majority of the time I see stunning work under priced.

So here is how I go about it.

First there are material cost. This is important. Hopefully you are buying wholesale, but if not you still need to mark up your materials. (I encourage you all to get a wholesale number!)
So your art clasp that was $12.00 should be $24.00 etc...

Next how long does it take you to create your art pieces. So I price my time at about $60.00 per hour. So if a bead takes and hour, then the price of that bead is around $60.00. 
BUT, and here is the problem. If I make a bead that is especially difficult and totally new and takes an advanced skill level then I price it higher. You are paying for my ability and skill level. Be proud of your work!

Next how long does it take you to assemble your piece? Make sure you write down your start time and finish, AND include design time. You are not only being paid to put the piece together but also for our artistic eye.


Do you have any ideas on pricing? Please share it with us.
See you next time.





 

10 comments:

Artisan Beads Plus said...

Pricing is always difficult. I think it is really important to remember that what people are paying for it the uniqueness and artistry. I love to create. My sister loves to buy! She is always telling me that she will pay for what others love to create because she enjoys having quality, one-of-a-kind pieces. I wish there was some formula, but there is not. I think one of my biggest pet peeves are those who under price their work. I don't mind if it is done from lack of experience, but once the experience is there, you should price within the same range as the other artists who create similar pieces. I hope I am wording this right.
MaryAnn

Julie Holmes said...

Great post Libby! This is such a hard one for me too. The enamels take sooooo long to make that the prices often seem astronomically ridiculous...yet I can tell you that under pricing doesn't work anyway. They don't sell either. I've decided that with my cloisonné it just has to be a work of love.

Libby Leuchtman said...

I agree Julie! I always think of seed bead artist and how much time it takes to create a WOW piece. You know that they are not getting near the amount that they should get vs time spent creating the piece. I agree some work will just not get the price it should but what the market will bear.

MaryAnn it is so hard to decided how to price your work but I do think having a guideline does help. Pricing your work the same as another artist is tough too, especially if that artist is established and you are not. Some will pay for the name only. It's a toss up. Trying to establish a set guideline is like trying to herd cats....

Roberta said...

Ugh pricing. My least favorite thing to do. I never know what I am doing in regards to it. Too high? Won't sell. Too low. Sell. but then what?

Artisan Beads Plus said...

I agree about whether an artist is established or not. When I first started selling I sold for lower prices than I do today. An established artist friend who also created ceramic beads asked if I thought I put as much time into them as she. Of course, I said, "yes." She then suggested that I take that into consideration. I guess I now look at it like guilds of long ago used to do which was to price similarly. It really is just a gripe because I don't think it will ever change.

Julie, Your work is beyond incredible!!! I'm surprised you don't get tons of sales. Each piece would be like wearing a miniature piece of art.... Unbelievable!

Kelli said...

I agree... UGH!!! It's a tough thing for me. I started making jewelry because I wanted to make and sell "wearable art" that was affordable. I've been going to art shows since I was a kid, and at most of them, I couldn't even touch the price of pieces I liked. I always wanted to stay under that $100 mark on necklaces, but with silver prices, and the fact that I spend so much more time making my pieces now, that's impossible. Last fall I started making hair barettes from twisted copper wire. I ranged them from $10 -25 depending on size. Sold them ALL at the first show. OBVIOUSLY I had them priced too low. (received several "told you so"s from my huband and sister :) ) Lesson learned!!!

Libellula Jewelry said...

Pricing items with a heavy silver content is SO hard! I've even had *friends* tell me that a necklace shouldn't cost more than $x when $x was less than I paid for the silver in it. I don't think people have adjusted to the increased price of silver (even though the price has fallen a bit).

And, a lot of people think copper and bronze items should be practically given away because the materials costs are so much lower than silver. People forget that the amount of labor doesn't change just because a different metal was used.

I wish this wasn't so difficult :(

Julie Holmes said...

You are too sweet MaryAnn! I've probably sold about 15-18 pieces, and given away half that much. I don't know how to sell it, and lately I'm wondering if art galleries might be better venues than as jewelry. However, I will say too that I don't think my settings are there yet. It's only recently that I've begun to feel like I can be more playful with them and do some texturing..add some words. I think it is hard to pair the glossy and colorful enamel with metal. Should the metal stay shiny, have a patina, get some texture? I would really love to see what other jewelers do with it. I'm hoping whoever wins the SYS this month will show us what she/he does with the cloisonné. I would love to see!

Barbara said...

I don't know if I've found the correct way to price yet, if there is a "correct" way. I use a mixture of what you all expressed. It is much easier when pricing paintings or 2d work as I price based on sq. footage, and that has always worked for me.

Stacie Florer said...

Great post...and yes, pricing is such a bear! But with a pricing formula it makes it more objective...and that is how I price my work too...

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