Number one question from knitters at Renegade last weekend: what advice could I share about how to successfully sell hand knits on Etsy.
And a-b-s-o-l-u-t-e-l-y do not (please!) take photos of your creations on your carpet, outside on the grass or driveway, on your bedspread, next to your dog or cat or baby (well, unless it’s a knit that a dog or cat or baby should be wearing/sitting on/playing with). You might luck out and get a second look from one person, but you’re more likely to lose hundreds of potential customers who won’t grace your creation with a second glance.
I am a yarn snob. I’m not going to be buy your sweater or scarf that was knit with 100% acrylic purchased from your local craft store. I can knit that myself (but I hate acrylic, so it’s not very likely …). I can also usually tell from your photos what sort of yarn you’ve used, so please be very honest with your customers about the fiber content.
If you’re going to use acrylic and other lower end yarns, that’s fine, just be sure you’re creating something beautifully knit and of the highest quality. I do use wool blends. I treat them with the same care and finishing techniques as my highest end luxury fibers.
#4 bonus tip: I could write a whole book on this (and I just might!), but here’s a bonus tip that I think is crucial. Please please price your knits well. Underpricing your knits hurts everybody, including you! YOU know how long it takes to knit a sweater. Hours and hours and hours. If you were charged an hourly rate for your knitting time, you’d be a gazillionaire.
Selling your hand knits for only the cost of the yarn (or even less than that) does absolutely no good to anyone other than your elated customers. You absolutely must cover your costs (materials, tools, overhead, and – yes – a salary). I have seen scarves on Etsy for $10 that made me think, “Yep, that’s worth $10.” I’ve seen other scarves on Etsy for $10 that made me think, “What the heck? That’s a $100 scarf!” Pricing is difficult at best … just don’t put yourself out of business at the get go by underpricing your knits.
Good read: Pricing your handmade goods
These are just a few tips that I think are important for those considering selling on Etsy. You could easily replace “hand knits” with “hand sewn,” “vintage,” or even “prints.”
Don’t agree? Let me know in the comments below! Same if you agree! Add some of your top tips as well!