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Thread: newbies first projects

  1. #1

    Question newbies first projects

    Last year I purchased a used carvewright version C with only a few carving hours on it. I am retired and live in Nova Scotia Canada and this machine seemed just the thing to help keep me busy. Well some months have passed and I am getting more experience and have made a few items. My budget is very limited so I am forced to produce my own patterns where ever possible and cannot yet afford the new software additions. Having looked at the rose tray project I decided to prepare a pattern from scratch using the photo as a guide. I felt that I would be forced to learn more doing that than I would is I purchased the project. One of these trays was a gift for a friend who has Airedale and Welsh terriers so I purchased a couple pf patterns from the store and set to work. The dragon tray is for myself. The other project was for our garden clubs anniversary and was also a gift.
    During 2013 I intend to make some items to sell at out local craft show in the fall. The problem is, how much do I charge for them? How do you guys and girls decide on a fair price. I don't want to sell to cheap as that is not fair on those of you who make a living doing this. Any suggestions would be welcome.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    Northern Colorado
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    Job well done and you have taught yourself very well!

    As for pricing, that is a wide open topic. Some charge based on machine time($/hour of carve time) or cost of materials time X amount markup. Do not under value your time and abilities just to make a sale! Seeing your results on the trays I would have no problems asking at a minimum of $60.00.
    RingNeckBlues
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    All patterns and projects that I share on the CarveWright forum are for your personal carving purpose. They are not to be shared, sold or posted on any other web site without permission from RingNeckBlues Designs.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    New Prague Minnesota
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    837

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    Nice job on ther trays. As far as a pricing thing it is the most difficult thing I have face with my machine. Seems you ask too much and you don't sell anything but too little and you find yourself barely covering your wood expenses.
    Good Luck !
    Where is the "Any Key" key located on the keypad
    Growing old is a privilege not everyone gets to enjoy.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    New Iberia, la.
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    1,866

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    Pricing your work, I have found when it come to craftshows the best formula is "ask your wife what would she pay for it".
    Looking at your projects and the fine quality I would start at $75.00, if you hold on to it for a while , you may come down some.
    If it take you 5 hrs of carving time, you can forget the carving time price and go for a general price in the area you are in.
    Some items sell better in different parts of the country. I have found if I'm new at a show, I do very well. No one has seen
    my work before and I sell. You may also explain how long it to make and finish you used to complete the project. People are look for
    a quality piece that is different from some one elses.
    Anyway give it a shot, There is old saying "when you give your price, don't say another word, the next one that speaks looses".
    I have done that and the person may or may not buy it right away or they will come back later.

    Perry B.
    My Shop 1044

    CarveWright START U Team Member

    V - 1.187 and 3.0 too
    With the DC Insert," dust all gone"
    CarveWright Customer Documentation http://www.carvewright.com/2010CWweb/maintenance.htm
    CarveWright Tips and Tricks http://www.carvewright.com/2010CWweb/tips.htm
    www.customcarvingsbyperry.com
    I have often wondered why it is that
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  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Missouri Valley Iowa
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    669

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    One thing I have seen a lot is that most people apologize for the price they charge (don't do that) .
    Like , I spent 5hrs carving and 2 hrs finishing , they don,t know or care.
    You should know what it cost you if it's to high for them or they want to get you down you left them an opening.
    Tell your price , Then Keep quit. Leave yourself some room to go down if you want but Keep it about 10%
    They will buy or walk.
    OLD SALT

    Member CarveWright Start U team

  6. #6

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    Wow!! I'm impressed with your designs and the carving job. You are off to a really great start. Thanks for sharing these.

    Larry

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    1,109

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    Really nice carvings, Eastjack. Looks like you are getting very comfortable with the software which is a great thing. I agree with all that has been said about pricing. It isn't an easy thing and not eveyone is a buyer. I really like Perry's suggestion of asking your wife what she would pay. I have done that myself and have had the best luck selling and making a profit.
    John
    www.jdmwoodworks.com
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    Bessemer, MI (shop location)
    Lake Gogebic, MI (where I hang my hat)

    "He who wants by the yard, but gives by the inch, should be kicked by the foot"...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Whidbey Island, WA
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    2,250

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    very nice carves- +1 that pricing is tough...

    Lawrence

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    New Iberia, la.
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    Eastjack I looked back the projects and another option on priceing is offer make a custom pet beds for the customer and add their
    pet's name on the side and maybe the pattern that matches the pet. you may have to buy different patterns as you go
    for the different breeds, but the customer is paying for it anyway in the custom price. The people feel better if it is personlized
    for their pet. I did a small grave marker for a lady's pet, when I ask if she wanted a picture of a poddle on it she was so happy.
    I found 3 poddles in the ptn store , let her pick it out and made her very happy.

    Perry B.
    My Shop 1044

    CarveWright START U Team Member

    V - 1.187 and 3.0 too
    With the DC Insert," dust all gone"
    CarveWright Customer Documentation http://www.carvewright.com/2010CWweb/maintenance.htm
    CarveWright Tips and Tricks http://www.carvewright.com/2010CWweb/tips.htm
    www.customcarvingsbyperry.com
    I have often wondered why it is that
    Conservatives are called the "right" and Liberals are called the "left".
    "The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of
    the fool to the left."

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Suffern, NY
    Posts
    367

    Default

    Really nice work for a newb

    Pricing is hard as it will take one person longer to finish a project than another person but you may both end up with the same results. Machine time can also be tricky if you try that method. The first thing you need to do is track every hard expense you incur to build one of those trays. All the wood, stain, glue... everything. Include the cost you incur to pick up material or have it shipped to you. That might seem a bit much but you do need to track your expenses as close as possible and make adjustments a few times a year if costs move up or down. You have obviously spent some time on woodworking skills and experience is worth something. That could be the trim carpenter in me talking but I will walk away from something if I feel someone is not willing to pay me what my skills are worth.

    It have taken me a while to get my pricing right on cabinets I build but I am at a point now where only about 10% of the people that contact me say it was more than they expected and back off, while maybe another 5-10% will hold off a bit and purchase at a time where financial stress isn't such an issue, i.e. Christmas season. That to me means I could probably bump up a little bit if I wanted to but I'm happy with where I have set my pricing and I know, from tracking every expense I have, that I am doing pretty good on every sale. In addition to the advice of giving your price and not looking uncomfortable, I would add that if you are giving prices and you get customers that smile and say "really" and buy right away, you are not charging enough. You want a certain percentage to not purchase too eagerly to know you are at a price point that the market will bear. As you figure out what your niche is going to be you will also find ways to speed up your process and put a little extra money in your pocket for less time.

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