How to turn your craft ideas into money!
11 March 2016
How I got my craft ideas to make me money….
This Blog follows on from my last blog on how I came up with the ideas. I now had the products, I just had no idea how to get them out there!! My first thoughts were, that I needed to get them into shops, I thought this was the only way to sell. I collected up various pieces and trundled off to Holt to find my millions!!! Funnily enough it didn’t work, new to all this I had no idea about trade prices and mark ups and all that. My products were met with very promising comments but no shops could sell them at the prices I wanted for them!
So it was back to the drawing board, this is where I got chatting to an amazing lady who lives in the same village, she was selling products on the craft scene, and over coffee she talked me through all I needed to know. I have to say without her help I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today!!
I booked my first craft show, being a Norfolk girl, I did the Royal Norfolk Show. I have to say, I was properly terrified!! Would I sell anything? Were my prices right? Would my stand look OK? Would people like my stuff? Its very hard selling your own creations, it takes guts, and courage to put yourself out there!! I have to say I’m not someone that worries about what other people think, I just said to myself, “Well if it doesn’t work, then at least I know I tried.”
I learnt a lot in the first show about how to tweak my products to better suit the market. I love really bright colours, but found that the more muted, plain colours sold better! Also about the layout of a stand, it needs to be inviting, easy to access, clear prices, un cluttered, and organised. And that I definitely needed a website!!
Having just started out, with hardly any money, I simply couldn’t afford a fancy, flash website, I also wanted to make sure that this was going to work, one successful show was not enough insurance for me to launch into spending thousands on a website. I opted for vistaprint, you pay a small monthly fee, and design your whole site from their templates. One thing I did invest in was product photography, believe me I did try myself, but David Bailey I am not!!!! I just felt I was never going to sell anything online with blurry un professional images. I know a very talented local guy, that is very reasonably priced if anyone, Norfolk based is struggling.
I then had to fine tune my products, the fabric range, and prices!! This took some time, and what I went with at the start, has changed many times since.
I did three shows in my first 6 months, and got my website up and running. To be honest with two small children that was quite enough!! It all takes time, especially when you don’t know what you are doing.
Now I am not saying I am some guru on all this, I just thought I would share how I went about things, and I cant tell you how helpful it was to have someone in the know to talk to, so a BIG THANK YOU to the wonderful, amazing lady that helped me to get started. And please feel free to contact me if you have any queries.