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Thread: As a general guideline - how much do, or would you, charge for your time?

  1. #26
    Super Member quiltmom04's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by raptureready
    I don't do commissioned work because I don't want to do what others want, only what I want. Does that sound selfish? Yes, well, that's okay. I worked too many years having to do everything according to someone else's wishes. Now that I'm retired it's my turn. If I make something that I've enjoyed and someone wants to buy it then as long as I get my money back plus just a little, I'm okay with it. Afterall, I've had the enjoyment of making it.
    I agree - doing a "commission" piece just takes the fun out of quilting. But if I ever do something for someone whos asks, usually becasue they are family, I tell them they are not allowed to say where they got it!! LOL!

  2. #27
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    Go on the web site Etsy and see what quilts are selling for.

  3. #28
    Senior Member LovinMySoldier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeannie
    Go on the web site Etsy and see what quilts are selling for.
    this is what I would do. That way you can stay competitive but not be over or under priced.

  4. #29
    Super Member brushandthimble's Avatar
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    I actually prefer to make what I want and set a price on it, then to take a commission. I will if the price is right, make it worth my time.

  5. #30
    Super Member moreland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjomomma
    I just told a friend if she buys the material I will charge her $50.00 to make one for her.
    I hope the pattern is very simple--otherwise you will be getting about a dollar an hour! I recently did 2 quilts "for hire" and charged $10 per hour. I kept a tally of my hours and didn't actually charge out as many as I spent, but still it came out to about $200 per quilt for labor. They furnished supplies and paid for the long arm quilting.

  6. #31
    Senior Member Jo Belmont's Avatar
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    A quilter is worth every bit as much (likely a whole lot more) than any mechanic (sorry, we call them automotive service technicians now, don't we).

    The national rate (straight time) varies (location, foreign/domestic, etc.) between $15 and $22 per hour. That's what the mechanic makes; it costs the employer lots more because of contributions, added taxes, etc.

    You are worth all that and more including your time to design, shop for the fabric, etc.

    If it's a rush job and you have to go into "overtime," then adjust your hourly rate to time and a half or more appropriately (as mechanics usually charge for emergency repairs), double rate.

    Actually, when someone asks what you charge to make a quilt, a good reply might be: "Well, the cost of the material of course, and what does a mechanic charge in these parts ... that ought to be fair."

    If they're serious, they should not be put off by that and you will be making a fair hourly rate. Otherwise, you lucked out and didn't end up doing something for nothing.

    Hope that gives a bit of perspective. Good luck with your venture.

  7. #32
    Super Member roguequilter's Avatar
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    hi...i agree w/all that mpspeedy stated. i have done a few commissioned quilts...and done some hand quilting for pay. i researched quilt sites that i found listed in the want ad sections at the back of my quilt mags. also talked to local [in the areas i was living] seamstress re: hourly rate. some quilters charge by the number of yards of thread - quilting and price of fabric involved double/tripled. my prob with that is that i draft my own patterns [mostly] and the more complex/original the design the more i would charge. i have a set rate for all the prep time/tools cost. then start keeping track of time spent...prewashing, ironing, cutting, piecing...etc. my husband scolded me on one quilt that i did elaborate quilting on...we figured it out that i was charging half a cent/hour...not quite giving it away...but ...dunno.

  8. #33
    Senior Member Lori L's Avatar
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    The Amish site was an eye opener and very informative. Thanks for the link! I'm not sure how to tell you to charge for a commissioned quilt but I'm sure there isn't a quilter on this site who actually charges what they are worth! Think about what we pay other "professionals" in our lives.....the electrician, the plumber, the mechanic and then move on to the MD, the lawyer etc and...well you get the picture. As a RN with 25yrs experience, I haven't worked for less than $25/hr for years and currently am at >$32/hr. IMHO....my time is worth as much off the job as it is on the job....just saying.

  9. #34
    Super Member Baloonatic's Avatar
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    I just made a 44 x 60 baby quilt for a lady. She purchased most of the fabrics on the top. I paid for some of them and the backing, plus the batting and the findings. I quilted it on a longarm and bound it. I was paid $150... and she tipped me an additional $100!

  10. #35
    Super Member QuiltNama's Avatar
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    For queen size I start at about $300-$350 plus cost of materials (fabric, batt & backing etc.) General work, such as repairs etc. at least $10. per hour. Binding by machine $1.50 per foot and by hand $3.00 per foot. If I have to assemble a back before quilting, $10.00 per seam and if ironing of the top is needed $15.00.

  11. #36

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    I like your idea, Bea.

  12. #37
    community benefactor Conniequilts's Avatar
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    You have all given me some great assistance with this topic. I appreciate all your advice. The person is requesting a wedding ring (maybe even double, I can't remember). In order for me to do this, I have to take a class, which I don't mind.

    The lady is perfectly willing to pay for the materials. I am thinking of perhaps charging her for the class I have to take to learn the pattern as well as $10.00 an hour or maybe I will charge her what I make per hour at work? I am going to have to have it professionally quilted and she will have to pay for that.

    I believe she is looking for just a twin size quilt. Does this sound about fair since I am still a new quilter (I am coming up on my one year anniversary)?

  13. #38
    Senior Member BettyB's Avatar
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    Is the $50 just for making the top

  14. #39
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    I TOO DO SEWING, CROCHETING, QUILTING AND IN THE PAST I'VE CHARGED DOUBLE WHAT THE MATERIAL WASWOULD YOU BELIEVE I GOT COMPLAINTS ABOUT IT. I GUESS THEY THOUGHT I SHOULD DO IT FOR NOTHING. SOME PEOPLE,HUH

  15. #40
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    Good but difficult question. You should charge at least $15 p/h plus material, wear and tear on your equipment etc. Good Luck.

  16. #41
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    I don't do free as all /most of my quilts are for funds for dog rescue.!

  17. #42
    Super Member brushandthimble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniequilts
    You have all given me some great assistance with this topic. I appreciate all your advice. The person is requesting a wedding ring (maybe even double, I can't remember). In order for me to do this, I have to take a class, which I don't mind.

    The lady is perfectly willing to pay for the materials. I am thinking of perhaps charging her for the class I have to take to learn the pattern as well as $10.00 an hour or maybe I will charge her what I make per hour at work? I am going to have to have it professionally quilted and she will have to pay for that.

    I believe she is looking for just a twin size quilt. Does this sound about fair since I am still a new quilter (I am coming up on my one year anniversary)?
    Sounds fair to me, and I have included the cost of classes into the price. Write up an estimate for her, get 50% up front. Have her sign it and make a copy for her, (you keep the orginal).

  18. #43
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    i charge $20 an hour for any sewing time...materials are extra, if i am making a specific quilt i usually decide on a set price for that project.

  19. #44

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    On any contract, I would also be sure to state that the quilt must be picked up and paid in full by XXX days after completion. Otherwise, it will be kept, sold to pay the expenses or donated, at your discretion. This keeps you from holding onto one for 6 months or 2 years, waiting to be paid, or going to court to recoup your expenses. Unfortunately, this happens to many quilters, piecer's and longarmers. Most longarmers generally have this in their contract now. An ending date is a good thing to have!

    Good luck with your project!

  20. #45

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    Conniequilts, Most LAQ charge 1 cent per square inch. They usually include the batting, because they have a special preference for the batting that works best for their machine. Thread is extra, depending on the size of the quilt. Custom quilting is more than just following a patterned design. Eiltcoq

  21. #46
    suesews's Avatar
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    I recently accepted a job making a quilt out of embroidered blocks of the birds of our 50 states. Blocks were 9-10" sq.,and I found a simple pattern with sashing and one boarder. I told my customer I would charge $10 per hour for my time, which I would keep track of. I took her shopping, and she paid for the fabric for sashing, boarders, and backing...about $75 at Joanns.
    The finished size was 92" by 118", and I had to buy a walking foot for my Grand Quilter, cause I didn't want to try anything that big on my regular Pfaff. I ended up charging her $300, and I left out some hours in hand sewing the binding, cause it was getting so pricy. If you never kept track, it is an eyeopener.

  22. #47
    Super Member mom-6's Avatar
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    Since I really don't want to do anything for anyone unless I feel like it (and then it would be a gift), I just started telling people my prices start at $300...

    After all if a simple brocade semi-circular court dress skirt is that much, which takes much less time to make than any quilt I've ever seen, that is actually kinda low.

  23. #48
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    I live in a low income area, so the way I price my quilts is I double the cost of what I put into it. So if my cost is $150.00 then the price for the finished quilt will be $300.00. If I lived in a higher income area, I would charge more. I just got a call from a lady that saw one of my family tree quilts & wants one for her family. She didn't think my price was bad at all. So am just waiting on her to send me the photos she wants on it.

  24. #49
    Senior Member judee0624's Avatar
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    I figure three times the cost of materials and long arm quilting charges, if you send it out.

  25. #50
    Super Member Pamela Artman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Conniequilts
    You have all given me some great assistance with this topic. I appreciate all your advice. The person is requesting a wedding ring (maybe even double, I can't remember). In order for me to do this, I have to take a class, which I don't mind.

    The lady is perfectly willing to pay for the materials. I am thinking of perhaps charging her for the class I have to take to learn the pattern as well as $10.00 an hour or maybe I will charge her what I make per hour at work? I am going to have to have it professionally quilted and she will have to pay for that.

    I believe she is looking for just a twin size quilt. Does this sound about fair since I am still a new quilter (I am coming up on my one year anniversary)?
    I just finished a queen sized double wedding ring quilt. I'm an experienced quilter and have been quilting for over 30 years but this was the first double wedding ring. I was commissioned to make this by a woman who saw one of my quilts and asked me if I would make one for her daughter's wedding gift. I charged her $500 and I supplied the fabric and I am paying for the longarm quilter. It is a difficult quilt to make, cutting and sewing has to be very precise and the curves need to be pinned which takes a lot of time. It took me several months to finish and by the end of it, I knew I had not charged her enough and I will never make another one. I couldn't wait to finish it and get back to my own projects. After I pay the quilter and subtract what I spent on fabric I'll probably make around $300 profit. Not nearly enough. Knowing what I know now about the costs and the time involved, I'd not make it for less than $900-1000. Before giving this woman a commitment, I'd wait until I took the class and tried making a sample with 4 or 5 circles to see if you think it will be worth your time. If you do, and if you'd like the templates for it, I'm selling mine!! LOL

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