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Thread: Selling Potholders? and other quilty questions

  1. #1
    Senior Member quiltingbee12's Avatar
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    Hi
    I have decided to take the plunge, and try to sell Potholders, Miniature Quilts, and a few other quilty items. I'm thinking I want to sell on ebay, ecrater, maybe Etsy, and a farmers market that I am going to. I'm sharing a table with someone else, so I don't have a lot of cost involved in that one.
    So, number one, with potholders, is it okay to use polyester thread, cotton fabric, and polyester batting? I talked to a lady who has been selling quilts, potholders and things like that for years, and she said use 3 layers, and it works just fine.
    What kind of a price should I put on them? I'm thinking 5 dollars, as it is a pineapple block, and takes a lot of time to make, then to quilt(I'm doing stitch in the ditch) and then to bind.
    Mini quilts, I'm thinking if it is hand quilted, 30 dollars, if it isn't 20 dollars?
    Any other places I should think about selling my things, and will they go?
    Any other tips, or pricing ideas? I'm trying to get some more money for fabric!
    Thank you

  2. #2
    Lisa T's Avatar
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    How long will it take you to make that potholder? If you spend a dollar on supplies, and it takes you an hour to make it, you are only making $4 an hour. Minimum wage is a LOT higher than that! (It's $7.40 here in MI.)

    It would take me longer than an hour to make a potholder, but I am not overly fast.

    Can you get a job at a local quilt store or fabric store instead? That way you will at least get minimum wage and also a discount!

  3. #3
    Super Member Quilting Aggi's Avatar
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    I truly believe you are unselling yourself. Remember you also want to be able to pay yourself when all is said and done. The pineapple block has a bit of work to it and I'm sure it will take more than an hour to make up one from start to finish. Do not undersell yourself.

    You must also look into how much it costs for you in materials and supplies as well as labour to make these things to sell!

  4. #4
    Super Member CajunQuilter2's Avatar
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    I don't think it is a good idea to use anything but all cotton material for the pot holder. The polyester can melt.

  5. #5
    Super Member Mamaskeeto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CajunQuilter2
    I don't think it is a good idea to use anything but all cotton material for the pot holder. The polyester can melt.
    I was thinking the same thing.

  6. #6
    Super Member CajunQuilter2's Avatar
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    When I make potholders I use warm & natural cotton batting along with batting made for potholders and such(can't think of the name right off). It has a silver coating on one side. The silver coating should face the wrong side of the top cotton fabric. I use 100% cotton thread. The thermo batting can be purchased at Wal-Mart or JoAnns. For the best deal use the 40% coupon at JoAnns or watch for when they go on sale for 50% off.

  7. #7
    Super Member Tink's Mom's Avatar
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    I wouldn't use the poly batting!!!
    Use warm and natural and some INSUL BRIGHT, it is $6.99 at Joann's. It is the batting with the silver wafer in the middle. I have a remnant that only cost me $1.07 for 11" sitting right in front of me. You wouldn't want to be liable for burns!
    If you want to use only poly, make sure that you attach a hang tag or stitch in a label that states that these are for decorative use only.............

  8. #8
    MelissaK's Avatar
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    I use the insul bright and I stitch right sides together and turn and top stitch closed. with doing the binding, you are eating at your profits!

  9. #9
    Super Member Favorite Fabrics's Avatar
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    quiltingbee12, you might check out other craft shows in your area to see what the competition is, for the items you're thinking of making. It would give you an idea of what the local market will bear.

    That said, I don't think your prices are too high!

    Still, you have to be aware that some of the shoppers will ONLY be interested in price... and also that there are some crafters who don't care if they make a profit, as long as they make their rent back and cover their supplies. Other shoppers will truly appreciate the time you've spent.

    You can always start the price higher, and lower it during the day at the show. Or... offer a discount if they buy a pair of potholders, or a couple of mini-quilts. This offers you the opportunity to enter into a conversation with your customers, and you may be able to get a sense of what they think about the price (even if they don't buy).

    Also... since I guess you're new to the selling end of things... you can do a little "market research" at the show. Position the price tags so that the customer has to touch the item to read the tag. If you have four similar items hanging next to each other, the one the customer likes best - not the closest one - is the one they will reach for the price tag on.

  10. #10
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    I sold almost all my potholders at sales for $5--they were simply panel blocks. I made the mistake of binding them--ugh. I'll turn the next ones inside out. I used W+N batting and Insul-bright. The older women loved cats, birds, sheep on them--I put flowers on the back. Good luck!

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