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Mark C.

Spoonrests or Top Ramen

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I looked up this thread and shared it with an immensely talented younger potter looking to make a living at it. I hope she joins Ceramicartsdaily. There is such generously shared knowledge here!

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The thing about throwing fast is it takes years of practice-I did not mention this as it seems so obvious .When you start it takes forever to make one pot-in five years you notice its getting faster-in 10 its much faster. In 20 years its way faster.

Its like putting on socks when you are 5 years old -its slow process-when you are a teenager socks are not an issue putting on.

Wow -I just noticed this is a really old thread .

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The thing about throwing fast is it takes years of practice-I did not mention this as it seems so obvious .When you start it takes forever to make one pot-in five years you notice its getting faster-in 10 its much faster. In 20 years its way faster.

Its like putting on socks when you are 5 years old -its slow process-when you are a teenager socks are not an issue putting on.

Wow -I just noticed this is a really old thread .

Yes, it is! She has been making pottery for years, by young, I meant 30s! She throws super fast, and does a lot of surface decoration. She is very artistic. I suggested she add simple things like this to her repertoire, things that can fly off the shelves. I also like these because even someone who doesn't have a lot of money can buy something special for themselves. :)

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On 6/13/2012 at 10:52 AM, Mark C. said:

Again I sell these for 5$ each-I price them at 4.70 and round off the tax wherever I travel with them so they are 5$ each-at that price they fly off the pedestals. Find your price point in your own area -if they are slow selling the price is to high

Man, and I thought my spoon rests were moderately priced at $17! I sell 4-500 of these a year, but I cant imagine getting 1/3'rd of the price.

My "old timer" studio mate/mentor was still selling mugs for the same price in 2012 as he was in 1985, which was $10.

You of course know your business and market better than anyone else does, and if your prices make you happy, then my words are inconsequential, but it seems like you are missing out on some "house payments". What we do is hard enough; not getting a fair market value for what you make, makes it worse.

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One thing you are not taking into account is location-Pots cost more the further east you go. That means you get more for ceramics in the east than the west. I cannot speak to why but I know its a fact.I wish it was not true but it is.

My small area is is a bit less than the big cities in this state as well.

The other thing is I want to sell many thousands not hundreds-the price break out west where they really slow down  sales wise is 7$.

Now the other thing is scale-I want to make a good living at this not just survive . So I want sales-the more the better. I can throw 48 spoon rests in 45 minutes-the rest firing /glazing takes time (they are hot waxed) 

For me they drive other sales as I noted so if they cover my booth costs and expenses I'm happy. At one of my shows I sell about 450.If the are 7-I sell 1/3 that many and have less interest and less spill over to my other forms in terms of sales. So for me I works great.Its not for everyone and the size matters as mine are not huge and fill stuffer space well.

 

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44 minutes ago, Mark C. said:

One thing you are not taking into account is location-Pots cost more the further east you go. That means you get more for ceramics in the east than the west. I cannot speak to why but I know its a fact.I wish it was not true but it is.

My small area is is a bit less than the big cities in this state as well.

The other thing is I want to sell many thousands not hundreds-the price break out west where they really slow down  sales wise is 7$.

Now the other thing is scale-I want to make a good living at this not just survive . So I want sales-the more the better. I can throw 48 spoon rests in 45 minutes-the rest firing /glazing takes time (they are hot waxed) 

For me they drive other sales as I noted so if they cover my booth costs and expenses I'm happy. At one of my shows I sell about 450.If the are 7-I sell 1/3 that many and have less interest and less spill over to my other forms in terms of sales. So for me I works great.Its not for everyone and the size matters as mine are not huge and fill stuffer space well.

 

I did not know about the geographical price differences; interesting. I get being in a big city vs a small town; I do shows in both venues; in the city, my work is considered cheap, when Im in the sticks, my work is outrageously expensive.

Im with you about wanting to sell at a volume! Im in this to make a living as well, and have something at the end of my career to retire on!

I also agree that the "smalls" sell the bigger pots in the booth. A lot of the small pots I dont have a huge affection for, other than that they pay my expenses. Usually for me its wine stoppers and little tea bag dishes. Generally speaking, about 60-75% of my annual gross sales are pots which cost less than $40. I have never conducted an experiment to see at what cost my sales begin to drop off not in a positive relationship to my profit margins on specific items (i.e. like you said, at $7 sales are 1/3 compared to at $5).

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