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  1. #1
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    15th January 19
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    Turning my hobby into a side business

    **This thread is to get feedback only. It is not meant to solicit sales here on xmarksthescot. No items for sale.**
    I am turning my hobby of knitting into a small side business of creating reproduction knitwear for my fellow reenactors. I plan to set up shop at the upcoming World War I Days in Rockford (northern Illinois, USA). A nice little pile of items has already begun, with many more to come over the next six weeks. All items are hand knit of 100% wool in correct olive drab and grey to dated original WWI patterns.
    While not strictly kilting, I would appreciate anyone chiming in, especially reenactors, on the proposed prices. I know that I am already severely undervaluing my labor just to bring prices down to what might be reasonable, so that doesn’t need to be said. In short, do you feel that these are fair and reasonable prices reenactors (or you) would pay for hand knit reproduction woolens?
    Balaclava/knit helmet- $40
    Watch Cap- $35
    Scarf- $50
    Pair Long Wristlets- $25
    Pair Short Wristlets- $10
    Trigger finger mittens- $40
    Pair Socks- $40
    Sweater- $180, depending on amount of materials needed.


    Thanks, KnittedReenactor
    Last edited by KnittedReenactor; 22nd February 20 at 07:44 PM. Reason: Policy compliance

  2. #2
    Join Date
    27th October 09
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    Kerrville, Texas
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    Those prices are very reasonable! Yes, definitely undervalued.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    10th December 06
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    Those prices seem more than reasonable to me.

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    More than fair pricing. DO...be certain you're getting a fair return for yourself.
    Ol' Macdonald himself, a proud son of Skye and Cape Breton Island
    Lifetime Member STA. Two time winner of Utilikiltarian of the Month.
    "I'll have a kilt please, a nice hand sewn tartan, 16 ounce Strome. Oh, and a sporran on the side, with a strap please."

  5. #5
    Join Date
    22nd March 07
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    I'll answer this another way. Presumably you have already seen the cost others charge for the same types of items at these gatherings. And what prices can be made based on the craftsmanship and authenticity.

    From here, you have to be honest about your craftsmanship, and if your knitted wares are true to what people are looking for.

    To undervalue your work, can throw the market into chaos, as others with high quality and accurate goods may be forced to lower their cost to compete. This benefits no one.

    However, if you overvalue your work when compared to others, your business will have a short life.

    Frank
    Drink to the fame of it -- The Tartan!
    Murdoch Maclean

  6. #6
    Join Date
    3rd January 06
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    Have you considered using a knitting machine?
    They were certainly used by some people to produce knitware - they are after all, many hundred years old.
    I have rather a lot of knitting machines myself - and can advise if you need information.
    I presume to dictate to no man what he shall eat or drink or wherewithal he shall be clothed."
    -- The Hon. Stuart Ruaidri Erskine, The Kilt & How to Wear It, 1901.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    29th August 17
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    As a part-time sporran-maker myself, I'd say that the first question you need to ask yourself is: do I want to run this as a business or as a lucrative hobby? For me it's a lucrative hobby, in the sense that it covers my materials and the time is spend making each item. I enjoy myself, have relatively little pressure and have some money to go to the restaurant/buy beer. A business is a whole different prospect: you're depending on it for your livelihood and have a whole lot of other costs and factors to put into the equation...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    15th January 19
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    Lake Zurich, Illinois
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    This is a spare time hobby business for me, earning a little extra in time that might otherwise default to tv or cat videos.
    My primary concerns are pricing myself out of reenactors' willingness to spend and just breaking even with all my expenses so far. The other vendors at this event will have original uniforms, field gear, blank ammunition, books, etc. that I will have to compete against for every dollar. Mine is an untapped niche there, no one else is providing a similar product.
    I am basing my prices on what a large reproduction company http://www.atthefront.com that imports machine made from China and another knitter online https://www.worldwarknits.com/ charge for knitwear. My rationale is if I can produce equivalent or better handmade than imported machine made, for a similar price, I can entice more people to look at my items to begin with.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    15th January 19
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    Lake Zurich, Illinois
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pleater View Post
    Have you considered using a knitting machine?
    They were certainly used by some people to produce knitware - they are after all, many hundred years old.
    I have rather a lot of knitting machines myself - and can advise if you need information.
    I have considered it, would like one, but don't have access to one. The local fabric/craft stores do have plastic circular machines, but I have heard nothing but problems with constant breaking. A vintage machine would be nice, but costly for a good condition working example. $700 for a box of uncertain parts, easy $1500 for a complete set up. Not at the point of making that leap yeat!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    3rd January 06
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    Ah - I sometimes forget how easy it is to get hold of knitting machines here in the UK, metal based machines with ribbers so it is easy to make the correct type of fabric.

    Anne the Pleater
    I presume to dictate to no man what he shall eat or drink or wherewithal he shall be clothed."
    -- The Hon. Stuart Ruaidri Erskine, The Kilt & How to Wear It, 1901.

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