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Thread: How Much is a Quilt Worth?

  1. #1
    Super Member Lneal's Avatar
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    That's my question. A friend wants me to make a king size bed quilt and doesn't care about the cost. I have estimated the pattern, quilt shop quality material, supplies, ect. and after adding my labor I am astounded at the price! Approx $800.00. I just checked on-line for king size quilts at department stores and she could buy one much cheaper.
    So how much is a handmade king size quilt worth? I would love to hear what you think.

  2. #2
    Super Member leatheflea's Avatar
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    Cant wait to here the responses for this one. I was asked to make one this past week and turned down it down due to I thought the price would be to high for them. People dont understand the time involved.

  3. #3
    Member ameriguat's Avatar
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    I've seen some Kings sell for $1200.

    I know for myself that to MAKE a queen costs me about $200, and it takes me awhile to do so, but you can find them online for a lot cheaper but I think when you make it, it lasts longer as well. (and its personal to your style)

  4. #4
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    a quilt is worth what a person is willing to pay...that sounds trite, but it's true. If your friend asked you to make it no matter the price, check with her to see if she's willing to pay the 800 (show her the pattern, explain the pricing, etc.) and if so, go for it. For many people, the cost of having a handmade/custom quilt is worth it.

  5. #5
    Super Member Lneal's Avatar
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    The problem is me :D She picked out the pattern, told me both husband and herself decided they wanted me to make the quilt. The cost is not an issue, so I am assuming it is the choice for handmade. But why do I feel so guilty about charging this much?
    I use top quality material and they are willing to pay the price. Maybe I will feel better once I have given them the estimate and find out their reaction. Which I am sure it will be to make the quilt :D :D

  6. #6
    Super Member Thumbelina's Avatar
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    I used to work in a quilt shop and we were told to charge 3x's the cost of the fabrics. Hope this helps you out. I know this can be daunting. You don't want to scare anyone with your fees, but you don't want to under charge. Your time and talents are worth something.

  7. #7
    Member ameriguat's Avatar
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    I don't think $800 is bad....worst case senario, tell her to buy the fabric and materials then charge her a fee to make it :)

  8. #8
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    Look online for an Amish quilt, they would sell a king size quilt for that price, minimum. I agree with Ktbb, a quilt is worth what someone is willing to pay, and you should discuss with your friend why you are estimating that price, and I'm sure she will understand. She may not be able to pay it, but she will understand why it is that price! I just bought batikis for a storm at sea with a paper pieced border, the fabric for the quilt top and bottom was over $330. That doesn't include batting or thread!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thumbelina
    I used to work in a quilt shop and we were told to charge 3x's the cost of the fabrics. Hope this helps you out. I know this can be daunting. You don't want to scare anyone with your fees, but you don't want to under charge. Your time and talents are worth something.
    3 time supplies is the rule of thumb for artists to charge for their work, and quilters are artists as well.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by ameriguat
    I don't think $800 is bad....worst case senario, tell her to buy the fabric and materials then charge her a fee to make it :)
    I like this idea alot! You could make a day of it at a quilt shop together helping her pick her fabrics!

  11. #11
    Power Poster ckcowl's Avatar
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    my queen sized black hand appliqued quilt was appraised for $3700;
    my king sized neutrals crazy quilt appraisal was $4200.
    my king sized dragon fly quilt...$5400

    my ricky timms convergence quilt (full sized)--$230...

    the value of a quilt is based on many things...complexity of pattern...commercial pattern or self-designed.
    fabrics and materials used...common available everywhere, or more difficult to find---
    quality of materials
    time involved, and techniques used.

    often i think...why should i make that quilt when i can visit jc penneys and buy it for $189...it would cost me $400 just for materials....that is the difference...a person can have the same quilt as a few thousand other people have...or they can pay a bit more and have something no one else has...or ever will...
    i NEVER make the same quilt twice...so any quilt from me is original and you will never find another one...and since i dye alot of my own fabrics no one can really copy one of mine either...they may be able to copy the design but can not replicate the fabrics...which also increases the value.

  12. #12
    Super Member hperttula123's Avatar
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    I would just explain to her how you do your costs. :)

  13. #13
    Super Member suezquilts's Avatar
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    I believe if she doesn't want to spend $800, there are some patterns that are easy to make, so less time. Debbie Maddey has easier star quilts

    http://www.calicocarriage.com/

    I made a queen for a wedding gift for a client... the quilting on mine is on the higher end of quilting, I used a double batting and free hand quilted it.(the first clip of a photo, I can't locate the entire quilt)
    The second photo is one I put together, in a day or two, easy pattern but the look is great, and a overall design for the quilting.
    These two quilts are moderately priced, because of the ease in piecing.
    I never skimp on the fabric, batting, thread, always use the best and you won't be unhappy with the outcome. Many have sales you can find fabric easily www. quiltshops.com
    I have the client look at fabric lines on line and we look for the best buy. I have them put down 50% upfront.
    Attached Images Attached Images


  14. #14
    Super Member Annaquilts's Avatar
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    I make consignment quilts. In the $1000 range for a king is not unusual. This ofcourse depends on the material used, pattern and quilting done on it.

  15. #15
    Super Member Jill's Avatar
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    A friend of mine paid $900 for an Amish-made queen size quilt 10 years ago. I'd give them the estimate and I'm sure their reaction will give you the answer.

  16. #16
    Super Member hcarpanini's Avatar
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    I think you are right on the money. I usually figure about $20 an hour for my time. I also figure the machine quilting into that as well. It does feel like a lot of money, but there are some out there that appreciate the craft.

  17. #17
    Super Member fleurdelisquilts.com's Avatar
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    Is it because she's your friend? That shouldn't matter: you still have all the costs and time invested. As friends, you want to be truthful and fair with each other. Keep that in mind and go for it. Imagine how much your work will be appreciated! What a wonderful opportunity for you!

  18. #18
    Super Member Tinabodina's Avatar
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    Of course she could purchase a king size quilt from a department store for a much cheaper price, however a "real quilt" meaning handmade and to her specification is worth much more than department store quilts. It is also one of a kind. 3 X's the amount of material. $800 would be a bargin. Don't sell yourself short. Be sure you sign the quilt.

  19. #19
    Super Member no1jan's Avatar
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    I won a quilt this year at a Quilt show and also received a free appraisal. It was an applique quilt designed by one of the makers and machine stitched by another. A third did the long-arming which was very explicit.

    All in all, the quilt was appraised at $1875.00. The woman who did the appraisal had certain guidelines as to what the quilt was worth; size, design, etc.

  20. #20
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lneal
    The problem is me :D She picked out the pattern, told me both husband and herself decided they wanted me to make the quilt. The cost is not an issue, so I am assuming it is the choice for handmade. But why do I feel so guilty about charging this much?
    I use top quality material and they are willing to pay the price. Maybe I will feel better once I have given them the estimate and find out their reaction. Which I am sure it will be to make the quilt :D :D
    Please do not feel guilty about charging $800. Your expertise, fabric shopping, cutting, sewing, and quilting more than justify your price. I made a twin quilt once (machine appliqued by me) that I had professionally quilted. Between the cost of the many different fabrics needed, the applique designs, all the stabilizer, and the quilting (plus large tip), I had almost $450 invested in that quilt.
    I understand your apprehension in quoting the price of $800. That is a lot of money, and so many people have little idea of the true cost of a handmade quilt, but quilters should never diminish their talent or time "just to be nice".

    Explain to her the cost of material, and give her a realistic (don't underestimate) amount of time needed to make her quilt. You might also mention the quality of fabrics, and your methods, ie. hand sewing the binding to the back, one of a kind quilt label, and type of quilting (meandering or labor intensive feathering etc.) you plan to do.

    She might surprise you by not only saying "go for it", but also she might appreciate the one of kind quilt you will be making for her all the more. ;)

  21. #21
    Junior Member buckyfan19's Avatar
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    I feel kind of bad right now. A few years ago I went to a quilt auction and paid $250 for a queen size Amish quilt. At that time, I thought it was rediculously expensive. Oh, how your point of view changes.

  22. #22
    Junior Member merridancer's Avatar
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    $800 for a king size is not enough. $1500 is more like it and still not enough.

    $800 is what I want for a single.

  23. #23
    Super Member Lneal's Avatar
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    Thanks for all the advice and comments. Hopefully this helps others who have wondered or felt the same way about this topic.

    When I consider that I will have $400 in materials and then my time it doesn't seem so much after all. Really I do want to be fair to myself about my time and I will be hand quilting this king size quilt. You girls have helped me to look at this project in a better way. I am going to rethink this some more and not let myself feel so guilty. I would never pay that much for a quilt, but then again, I know how to make quilts.

  24. #24
    Senior Member AtHomeSewing's Avatar
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    This situation is simply crying out for open communication before agreeing to it.

    Spend some time talking to them to find out what they really want. Do they want an investment in hand made art, or something to toss on the bed for a few months, a bed that they may share with their pets? :shock:

    If they do want a beautiful hand made quilt, then it's up to you to educate them on the amount time and effort that goes into it, and especially the anticipated price. Perhaps they would like to talk to a quilt appraiser before beginning, or get the quilt appraised when it is completed.

    If you don't communicate, then simply hand them the quilt and a bill for $800 or more, they may well be shocked and angry, and rightfully so....because they simply had no idea what to expect, and you didn't tell them. And how would you feel if your quilt was appraised for, say $3,200 and you only asked for $800?

    Once they understand what they are asking for, and if they decide that they truly want the hand made piece, then making the quilt will be a joyful process for all of you. If they decide they are not ready for that commitment, then you are all spared.

    By the way, Libby Lehman prices her quilts, and has no trouble receiving, $400 per square foot! :thumbup:

  25. #25
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    Recently at our quilt show, an appraiser gave insurance values for several quilts. Most queen-sized quilts appraised in the $1200 to $1600 range, depending on the quilting and piecing/applique quality. I think $800 for a king-size is a bargain!! I don't really have an answer for how to educate a non-quilter about value.

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