The Cost of Handmade

Photo of Karen Jahns crocheting

Many crafters and artists put a lot of time and money into creating their pieces of work that they sell. I have seen at the many different crafts shows that I have participated in some people don’t see the value in the cost the artist/crafter is selling their pieces for. On the other hand there are there are those customers that do value an artists/crafters work and support their small businesses.

I will never forget my very first craft show in February 2020; there was a customer looking at one of my products and commented on the quality of work but as soon as she saw the price, she walked away and made the comment: “I could find someone make this cheaper for me”. This is a comment that has always stuck with me and at first I was upset but then I realized that most people do not understand how much time and money goes into creating pieces of handmade artwork and craft items.

Arts and Crafts are a labor of love for those that enjoy creating different pieces and have the opportunity to sell their works. Some people choose this as a side hobby but there are others that this is their full time job. Artists and Crafters put their own time and money into the pieces the make. Sometimes those materials aren’t cheap or may require many hours, days or weeks worth of work to complete a piece. Always remember that you are paying for an item that is handmade, not something that is mass produced that you could get a store. With purchasing an item from an artist or crafter you are helping them with their small businesses and dreams.

Numerous times at craft shows, I will have people ask me about my different Amigurumi items “How long did this take you?” Many people are surprised at the amount of time that goes into creating the different pieces. I appreciate people asking me about my art and craft work. This helps them gain a better understanding of what goes into a handmade item. If you ever have any questions at an Art or Craft show, ask the maker, we are always happy to talk about our work.

For example for me to make an Avocado Pillow, it takes around 4-5 hours of crocheting, assembling, stuffing etc. I try to factor in the costs of the materials: yarn, safety eyes, polyester fill and my time to create it. Even the cost for some of my materials has gone up in the past year, so I try to adjust my prices accordingly. I do like to offer different sized crocheted items at different prices points. That way my items are accessible for anyone for their budget. Each item that I create is a labor of love and enjoy making each piece. It gives me joy when I am at craft show and people can’t stop smiling at the adorable Amigurumi food crochet items that I have available.

I truly love what I am doing, the ability to be creative and make things with my hands. For some it might be a fun hobby but for others it’s their dream job. Let’s continue to support local small businesses and their dreams. Who doesn’t love a handmade gift?

Remember you can always help support small businesses by writing a review, sharing a post about the items you recently purchased at an art or craft fair, recommending them to friends/family, following them on social media. Every little bit helps continue to grow small businesses.

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