April 11, 2008, 4:54 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Craftwerk2stall Craftwerk2stall1
(old craftwerk pictures just for a bit of colour to a long post..)

I went to the post office today, to send off some of my Etsy orders, and when the lady told me how much it was going to cost I almost fell over.
I swear postage costs increase every single time I go to send something. I’ve been posting things overseas for years, and I know that it’s always been an expensive thing to do, but when posting two parcels costs as much as one of the tops I sell something has got to be wrong.
This means, unfortunately, that I’m going to have to raise my postage costs (which I keep as low as humanly possible by using nearly all recycled packaging and not charging for the new stuff which I do use..) because I worked out that everytime I send something I end up paying at least $4 of the postage myself (which adds up pretty quickly..).
I guess this is why everybody is all about ‘buying local’. I mean, I knew this, but for some reason today it really hit home. It costs me less to sell locally/nationally and it costs people less in the long run to buy locally too.
What am I getting at? I’m not really sure. I guess I just wanted to put it out there and see what everyone else thinks.
I love online selling because it means people all over the world get to see and buy goods they simply can’t get in their own country, and artists and crafters get to share their creativity with a broader audience. I’m not about to stop selling online, don’t worry.
But on the flipside, I think I am going to try and sell more in my own little slice of the world.
I want to start doing more selling ‘in real life’. I want to, in a few months when I’m allowed to drive alone, travel to sell things at craft fairs. I have this image of me, and Aesop and maybe a travel buddy (any upper north islanders keen to do some crafty travel?) filling up the boot of our giant car with crafted goods and roadtripping it down to Wellington for every Craft2.0 that comes up, or missioning it up to Auckland to sell things to the big city folk up there.
I also want to do more ‘advertising’ in New Zealand. I hate the thought of self promotion, being a rather self conscious person, but I want to speak up at least a little more. I have a wee goal of being mentioned in a certain magazine sometime in the future and I need to pick up the pace a little to make that happen, I think.
I’m making the first little baby steps though. I’m looking at cutting back a day at work to make more time for sewing, I’ve bought an invoice book to actually start keeping track of my incomings and outgoings and I’m buying fabric again. Small steps towards big things, right?

So, what do you think about the whole selling locally thing? how important is it, and do you prefer to buy/sell locally? Does anyone have any advice or thoughts about any of this? I’d love to hear anything anyone has to offer!


7 Comments so far
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I know it’s always a bit more expensive to buy locally, but you are usually buying something original, unique and loved. So I reckon buying locally (kiwi) is a great thing, I just don’t think I do enough of it.

Comment by Amy

The price of sending overseas for us is CRAZY now, it just makes more sense to sell most of your stuff here but then if you’re making enough profit on Etsy to make it worthwhile don’t stop it, just raise your postage and let people make up their mind whether it’s worth it for them. Maybe you should look at getting stocked in shops, or at least a shop?

Comment by Steph

I was talking about how NZ post had screwed over all my bloggy crafty peeps with tobin yesterday.

And while I completely advocate buying locally and all that, it seems NZ consumers are lagging the frick behind! I mean, as well as buying locally, they also need a mindshift when it comes to buying handcrafted products. They need to realise the amount of love, energy and thought that has gone into something that isn’t factory produced and accordingly will have a price tag! I mean, I’m not into buying simply for a label but I do spend more on things that have taken time to make.

Sorry, this has turned into a bit of a rant!! hehe

Best of luck with your stuff R – and remember that I’ll do anything I can to help you out with Toasty things. 🙂


Comment by Nikki

Buy New Zealand made!! I’ve been trying to make a effort to do so in everything I buy, especially with free trade deals coming in. I think that locally you can buy something really unique and keep Kiwi talent thriving.
I also want to say that I love your blog. I stumbled onto it 6 months ago when I was having a rough day being an at-home mum and it made me laugh and smile:) and helped me pull out my creative side that I had buried away a long time ago (in favour of a career). I do relief teaching at a local high school as well and even told the design and textiles class to go onto your esty site to see the amazing things that you have created, you really are an inspiration 🙂

Comment by Carmel

Woah yeah – I just sent a package to Europe that cost A LOT to mail – I too, had a heart attack in the post office.

Good on you for your big plans, girl, conquer NZ! 🙂

A new indie clothing/craft shop has just opened here called ‘Nuddy Clothing’ – it’s the same deal as Dandylion – they put 100% mark-up on – but I know the owner and the shop is cool. Let me know you you’re interested in stocking there.

xx Helen

Comment by Helen

Selling is stores is a catch-22. On one hand you’re getting your name out there, you can have your stuff displayed for lots of people to see (rather than hiding in your studio), and it’s nice to get random checks in them mail (if you’re doing consignment) or a big check at once (if they buy wholesale), and sometimes people who like your stuff end up seeking you out online. On the other hand, you can’t have it up in your Etsy shop if you’ve given it over to a brick-and-morter place, you often get less $ than you would if you sold it directly to a customer, and if the shop where you sell your stuff turns out to be flaky, it can be a headache. After taking a break from selling in boutiques (job and baby consumed my time) I’ve recently started putting stuff back in shops around Los Angeles. I just want all this stuff out of my studio and hopefully into the hands of people who would appreciate it. Good luck with whatever you choose to do!

Comment by KB VanHorn

This is only one persons stand but, I think it’s really really important to buy local, and just as important to support handmade everywhere! As someone who has purchased (and loved) your items, I would be willing to pay the extra cost on shipping for sure…so feel free to tack it on!

Best of luck on that road trip idea, it is one of my dreams, packing up and living the crafty/family life on the road!!

Jess (lover of toasty goodness in NJ)

Comment by jessica

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