How to Price your work..


Simple confidence can change perception of both audience and artist. ~Jill Badonsky

This post is aimed at fellow jewelry makers but would be of interest to all makers. I begin with the Badonsky quote to point out [that after doing exhaustive! homework..] pricing comes down to a level of confidence. 

Do you believe in yourself?

I think it may be the very nature of artisans everywhere to be a psychotic mix of humility and arrogance. I’m joking~sort of..but most definitely all of us find pricing our work challenging. We either give our work away or pull back and price too high.

This guide is outlined on the jewelrymaking.com site..but there are many out there if you search. 
Carefully tally up the cost of your material and supplies, a percentage of overhead + time. [Set yourself an hourly wage that sounds fair to you..your locations minimum wage will give you some insight. I’m not saying use this figure, unless that makes you comfortable. You probably began this for many reasons..one of them may have been to supplement or become your income. Keep in mind any classes and workshops taken to arrive at your level of expertise! and then there is the value of your own unique vision.] Back to the formula..multiply that figure x 2 and you’ve arrived at a wholesale number. That’s the amount that you can live with should you sell to a gallery or wholesale your work to shops. [A gallery consignment typically takes anywhere from 40 to 50%] For keystone or retail amount it is this number multiplied by 2.5 -3

If you’re just starting out and your skill level is beginner, you need to adjust your prices accordingly...BUT, don’t undervalue what you do because you are a beginner. 
As you develop not only does the quality of your work improve but your style begins to settle in and become uniquely your own..all this will serve to raise the value of your art, but you will have to start yourself off with room to go up. 
Like Goldilocks, we’re looking for ‘Just right’..not too high [we’ll price ourselves right out of the market] and not too low [the work will be viewed as ‘cheap’] It’s a dance that you alone will need to study out.

“An artist is not paid for his labor butforhisvision.” ~JamesWhistler

My little workroom several years ago..my paintings and drawings and
ripped out photos surround my work area.

Personally, I’ve always thought if you’re going to err then it’s better to price your art too high than too low. I would rather have my work stay with me waiting for the right person to fall in love, than to ‘sell out’ and put a price on it that I’m not happy with just to have a sale. 

Thats not to say I’ve not given many pieces away..charities and friends and family have all been gifted my work now and then. 

Karma feels good and my Muses are happy when I am.

In the end, this is your journey and you alone are the Captain of your ship..that’s the joy all makers have. Keep working at this, you will find the spot you’re comfortable with in this moment of time.