Steps to take when selling Maloof rocker?

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Forum topic by yellowtruck75 posted 07-31-2010 08:26 PM 1652 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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469 posts in 3632 days

07-31-2010 08:26 PM

I am about to finish my 3rd rocking chair, this one will be my first Maloof inspired chair. What should my fist steps be in selling it? I am not looking to get rich on them (atleast not right now ;)) but I don’t want to give them away. What steps do I need to know to ship something this large? Do people use this site, their own, ebay, etc. to list them? I really like making these chairs and want to continue but I don’t have any space to store them. Sorry for all the questions.


4 replies so far

View Mark Shymanski's profile

Mark Shymanski

5623 posts in 4278 days

#1 posted 08-03-2010 05:45 AM

There have been lots of discussions here on pricing and marketing your work. I would search these out and then perhaps refine your questions based on what you’ve read.

-- "Checking for square? What madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2

View richgreer's profile


4541 posts in 3640 days

#2 posted 08-03-2010 02:59 PM

I think prices at the Amana Furniture Shop may be a good reference point for you.

I say this because everything is hand made by an individual craftsman. The quality of their workmanship is incredible. They do commercially what many of us try to do in our workshops. No assembly lines.

Amana has a well established reputation and they have some (limited) success selling over the internet but for furniture of this quality, people want to see and feel the furniture before buying it.

I would look for a piece of furniture on their website that is comparable to yours and I would consider their price to be the maximum possible. Personally, I would probably price at about 75% of their price but that’s up to you. You probably don’t have the reputation they have (yet).

I would also encourage you to market in a way that encourages people to see and feel and even sit in your rocker. Personally, I would not buy something like this over the internet.

BTW – the Amana Furniture Shop is about 25 miles from where I live and they do offer tours and/or you can watch the craftsmen from behind a glass.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

View tyskkvinna's profile


1310 posts in 3551 days

#3 posted 08-03-2010 03:28 PM

I agree with Rich – this is not something I would buy over the internet. Well rephrase: If I had never bought anything from you before, I would not buy it over the internet. If I had the opportunity to purchase smaller (less expensive) works from you in the past, I would consider it. but something this big and expensive is going to be a major purchase, and unfortunately there’s a lot of sketchy people selling expensive things online… I have no reason to trust what you say about how good it is. I want to sit in it.

This sounds like the kind of item you would have better luck selling through local exposure. Are there any stores in your area that sell work by local artisans? That would be a good place to start (though keep in mind they are going to take a fair chunk of the money for selling it)... Craft fairs would be good if you also had smaller items, I really imagine it’s the sort of thing people will eventually buy after looking at it many times, buying a small thing to see they like your craftsmanship and business sense, and then purchasing the big ticket item.

-- Lis - Michigan - -

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4541 posts in 3640 days

#4 posted 08-03-2010 07:40 PM

I’ve been thinking about this some more. What would I do it I had a single, upscale rocker to sell?

I would look for a business with a lobby and good traffic from upper income people. An attorney’s office or an architect’s office come to mind but I am sure there are many other options. Ask the business if you could display your chair in their lobby and offer the business a commission (10%) if it sells. You’d have to leave business cards and/or brochures and deal directly with the customer if they contact you to buy.

A private country club may be an excellent place to try this.

I think you would have better luck with a locally owned business as opposed to the local office of a national business.

Just an idea.

-- Rich, Cedar Rapids, IA - I'm a woodworker. I don't create beauty, I reveal it.

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