Your project is worth more than that!

  • Advertise with us

« back to Sweating for Bucks Through Woodworking forum

Forum topic by Don posted 12-18-2012 12:46 PM 2237 views 0 times favorited 30 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Don's profile


552 posts in 3787 days

12-18-2012 12:46 PM

Have you ever had a client tell you that?

I set my price for the Purpleheart and Maple Jewelry Box, told the client and he came back with that statement.

I’m still in a state of shock…..

-- -- Don in Ottawa,

30 replies so far

View maraziukas's profile


71 posts in 3824 days

#1 posted 12-18-2012 01:15 PM

Oh yeeee. I had even worse comment, when i priced my walnut rocking chair ( for 1500 $

-- Maraziukas, Lithuania,

View jerrells's profile


918 posts in 3429 days

#2 posted 12-18-2012 01:41 PM

I am having more of a problem setting pricing this year than last. If I set a realistic price, based on the price of the wood and the amount of time, it will not sell. If I set a price at which it will sell I am giving it away. I really have no idea what to do.

-- Just learning the craft my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ practiced.

View JoeinGa's profile


7741 posts in 2551 days

#3 posted 12-18-2012 01:46 PM

I have seen both sides of this coin. See my answer here…

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View Don's profile


552 posts in 3787 days

#4 posted 12-18-2012 01:51 PM

Usually it’s the case of ‘your price is too high’ but in this case, the client actually told me that my price was too low.

-- -- Don in Ottawa,

View maraziukas's profile


71 posts in 3824 days

#5 posted 12-18-2012 01:59 PM

Wow … I wish I have even one such client in my life

-- Maraziukas, Lithuania,

View Pdub's profile


926 posts in 3724 days

#6 posted 12-18-2012 02:37 PM

I have people in my craft group ask if I am charging enough for some of my items. I know sometimes I am a little low but I don’t want to take home everything that I took to the show. I sometimes raise my prices for the next show if items seem to sell quickly but I always price them at a price that I can live with.

-- Paul, North Dakota, USAF Ret.

View tyskkvinna's profile


1310 posts in 3530 days

#7 posted 12-18-2012 02:40 PM

You know what’s really infuriating? I often get people tell me that… and then never buy anything. I did a craft fair a few weeks ago, and I made a bunch of stuff that I could sell, reasonably, at $20. Enough people bought them, but at least twice as many looked at the stuff, picked it up, examined it, complimented it, and then told me I was charging “way too little” and then …. walked away. -shakes head-

-- Lis - Michigan - -

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 3853 days

#8 posted 12-18-2012 03:29 PM

When someone tells me my prices are high I ask them what they think my time is worth. I let them know that I put a lot of hours into each and every box I create and I value my time and skills. My prices are not for everyone…but there are alot of people out there with plenty disposable income..
Like everyone else in the world, there are many things in life I really like alot but can not afford. Any person or business in existence makes things for a certain niche’ market.

I always seem to somehow find customers that can afford to spend money for what they like and want. I have never made inexpensive items for a show …however… I always seem to make sales and get commissions afterwards…enough to keep me busy.

View tenontim's profile


2131 posts in 4289 days

#9 posted 12-18-2012 03:46 PM

When they tell me that my work is worth more than what I’m selling it for, I offer to sell it to them at a higher price. Haven’t had any takers yet. When I lived in Maine, it was nice to have the Stickley store 35 miles away, in Portland. Most folks looking for A&C furniture had already been in there before they talked to me, so they knew I was giving them a nice deal. Some ordered furniture from me, some had regret because they had already bought something from Stickley, but nobody ever paid me more than I was asking.

View Earlextech's profile


1162 posts in 3235 days

#10 posted 12-18-2012 06:06 PM

Some people these days are willing to say anything just to try and get a rise out of you. Don’t take the bait. When they say it should cost more, ask them at what price would they buy it and then push hard for the sale at that price.

I love telling this story – my wife owned an art gallery, a painting hung on the wall at $125 for a year, we raised the price to $250 and sold it the next week. Pricing has no reality. Don’t get caught up in what inexperienced people say.

-- Sam Hamory - The project is never finished until its "Finished"!

View Loren's profile


10477 posts in 4192 days

#11 posted 12-18-2012 06:11 PM

Price your work at what you need to get to make
the business of making things worthwhile. You can
get paid what a plumber gets to do woodworking,
but you have to be a good marketer to get that
and you have to know what you can and can’t
make money at. Original designs consume a lot of
time to protoype, but if they become salable portfolio
items and you have the jigs and templates they
can be assets.

Only the affluent are accustomed to paying for
real craftsmanship. Some non-affluent people know
what such things should cost because they have
skills or know somebody well in the trade.

View ruel24's profile


79 posts in 2837 days

#12 posted 12-18-2012 06:35 PM

It’s going to be hard to justify one-off custom furniture prices when people are used to paying mass-produced prices. That’s the way it is. People can get some crappy table at Morris Home Furnishings with marquetry that looks like it’s silk screened on for $400, but for you to do something like that out of your garage with good hardwoods and quality craftsmanship would have to be priced double that to make it worth it at all.

View McLeanVA's profile


493 posts in 3978 days

#13 posted 12-18-2012 07:12 PM

Ah yes… the artist’s dilemma.

I hear that more often than not. And I’m perfectly fine with it. I take it as a compliment. I’m a pure hobbyist and am not in it for the profit. So long as my project sale covers my materials cost, it’s just a great excuse to do what makes me happy.

Full disclosure, I make (on average) $1.50 – $2 per hour of time spent on my projects. Not drying time, but actual moving, cutting, sanding, finishing, etc.

There is a hazy ceiling at which you will price projects just beyond a comfort zone and you will notice less sales because of it. I price my projects where I know they will sell and sell fast. Could I have made 10%, 20%, 30% more… maybe. But I’m happier to see my projects get gobbled up quicker than I can make them.

You should be proud of your work if someone is willing to pay more.

-- Measure, cut, curse, repeat.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30462 posts in 2882 days

#14 posted 12-18-2012 07:16 PM

I am with Liz on this one. They say your price is too low and don’t buy anything.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Tennessee's profile


2901 posts in 3059 days

#15 posted 12-18-2012 07:32 PM

I’ve had this said to me so many times it’s gotten old. But the minute I put a guitar out there at a couple hundred higher, with added goodies to boot, it almost always rots. Last one I donated to my church for a Christmas giveaway. My 50th, I put everything into it I could, and I still own it…

I’ve come to the conclusion that people who say these things, either don’t really get what the market will bear, look at too may “Buy it now” numbers on eBay, or are just being nice.

As far as getting more for your work, if my name was one of the famous guitar builders, I could charge three times as much for the exact same product. There is definitely something to be said for a nameplate.

And I find that most people with a lot of disposable income these days are hanging onto that disposable income, what with the insecurity of the economy at this point.

Overall, right now I’ll show a loss, definitely, this year, like last year. Don’t really care, I’ve built some nice guitars and maybe someday someone will come knocking on my door. But I’m not betting on it, and my living is in NO way associated with profits from my guitars, cause there ain’t any!

-- Tsunami Guitars and Custom Woodworking, Cleveland, TN

showing 1 through 15 of 30 replies

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics