Monday, June 2, 2008

Sell the baby??!!

When I was first asked to sell a quilt I was quite taken aback!! What? Sell my baby – especially since said baby had just won a prize….but as I thought about it, I realized that these babies were not doing much being rolled up in a closet! Even though they were rolled on those wonderful noodles the pool companies invented for quiltmakers (seriously I wondered why noodles were in the seasonal fun section of the drug store together with buckets and spades and floating devices!). It would be so much better if the quilts were hanging on a wall giving pleasure to people and I had the money to go buy more dye, more white cloth, a better sewing machine, thread, art books……

So then it was necessary to determine a price. The next time I was in a show, I worked out the square foot price of each piece…the range was large from $100 to $800 psf. I considered where my work fell in terms of quality but also decided to calculate the cost of everything I used to make the quilt, and how many hours it took me to make it. If I paid myself a minimum wage, the figure came out at $150 psf.

So that was where I started…I’ve been kind and given myself a small raise each year (without having to have the yearly evaluation where you are extremely nice (if not sycophantic!) to the boss in the hopes that this may help!!!) so now I’m at $200 psf which feels about right.

Quilts sell from a variety of places (shows, galleries, websites) to a lot of different people. I love to meet or hear from the new owners and know that my piece is bringing a little joy and pleasure into their homes or workplaces. Quilts are better out of the closet!


1 comment:

Del said...

Nice post, Elizabeth. This is the most asked question when I talk about collecting quilts. Sharing the info about your pricing method is a generous act. Thanks. Del