Monday, November 8, 2010

Craft purchasing etiquette

If you are someone who loves to purchase hand made crafts because you yourself are not crafty but can appreciate someone who is you should know a few things.

1. A crafters time is worth the money they charge for their items.

2. Just because you can find similar items cheaper at a box store does not mean they are worth less money.

3. Placing an "order" with someone you know who crafts, be it knit, crochet, sew, beading etc is not a polite way of asking if the person would be willing to make something for you.

4. Gushing profusely is completely appropriate.

5. Yes a handmade blanket REALLY costs THAT much! (see rule 1 for proof)

6. Unless a crafter has a booth, an online store, or other venue do not assume that they are willing to make and sell their crafted items.

7. Do not assume that a crafter is willing to create special items with your favorite color choices.

8. Compliment the crafter on their hard work, abilities, and color schemes.

9. Always tell people who the crafter is that created the item you love so much, when possible hand out extra business cards. If rule number 6 applies!

10. Share these rules with everyone you know so that we can all support one another.

* yes I am a crafter! I love to crochet, make jewelery, and sew. I however have gotten away from selling my items OR making them for people who do not appreciate them. To many people seem to think since they can buy a knit cap from a box store that my lovely crocheted items should be less expensive. The yarn alone costs between $5-10.00 and the hours it takes me to sit and make an item are still worth being paid a wage per hour. I am an expert in my field of crochet, which means I do very advanced patterns and my items are sturdy. They last a long time and are well put together. Yes you could probably find an item that would "work" just as well as my lovely handmade items, however they will be just like everyone else's. They also are machine made and took a fraction of the time to complete.


  1. Bravo... Bravo!! I totally support you and the rules. Your time and effort is more than worthy of proper payment. Sadly so many in this realm have forgotten the old ways of well fashioned items and the talent that is involved in crafting such.

    I would like to see how these people would like to spend their money on supplies, countless hours crafting something and have another say "can I get that for a couple dollars?" or worse yet.. "free". I know at times people will make us something and "gift" it to us and in doing so, the "giftee" truly should know how loved and blessed they at that someone did such a wonderful thing for them.

    People need to quit wanting something for nothing and realize as people our time, talent and expertise is worth more than a few pennies!

  2. Thank you each of you.

    Someone pointed out to me that yarn actually can cost upwards of 25.00 a skein, which is true if your buying animal fur like wool or alpaca. I have wool allergies so I do not use wool, but I do love alpaca which is upwards of that 25.00 mark!

  3. Yea, the yarn can cost a whole lot more. My dad just purchased yarn for me to make a Barn Raising Quilt. Final yarn cost: $200

  4. These rules are great! Like you, I enjoy crocheting. Recently, I have given three blankets to expecting mothers, and I haven't received a single thank you. It's been long enough that they have had plenty of time to write them (one was give in May!). If they didn't appreciate them, I wish they would just give them back! As you said, it takes a lot of time to make things by hand.

    I'm sorry to "vent" on your blog, but I figured you would understand!

  5. Quite well said!

    One friend wanted to "commission" me to design and make a knitted piece for her. When I mentioned that I might be able to use the design as a pattern for sale, she was upset that she wouldn't own the design... all this for an amount of money that barely covered the yarn. So I insisted that it be her birthday present, with no money involved.

    I've heard that sometimes there's a sense of ownership that people develop, which isn't always clear to both the artist and the buyer. In my opinion, you can buy a design and the rights to it, or you can buy a created object. They're two different things.

    I guess as consumers, we're just used to grabbing as much as we can.

  6. @ Aron You are very correct in saying that a final project could cost more then 200$ in yarn! I should have been more clear myself. That was a base price for one skien of yarn! not for an entire project. :)

    @ Nikki VENT away! this blog was mostly my vent for people who ask me if I will make certain items then totally balk at the price. Honestly if you want handmade good quality and you are willing to appreciate said Item I am likely willing to make it. I however have not found anyone who is willing to "gush" or pay what I am worth.

    *side note* gushing can simply be a thank you card, a smile and a nod or your profuse appreciation of my (or any crafters) work.

    @ pentalia~ I am quit stunned that anyone who wanted an "item" would think they had creative license to the pattern.

    I appreciate the feedback from everyone who left me comments, sent me mail or let me know what they thought.