Author Topic: Making Money...  (Read 9070 times)

Lasse_C

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Making Money...
« on: October 11, 2005, 10:53:23 AM »
Under the poll "Knots in your life" 36% of us stated knotting as a profitable hobby. I dare to claim that several of us would like to move it a step or two up the ladder into becoming an income. It might be overly ambitious to hope for making an actual living from knotting, but a part-time income would be very nice indeed!

For me it is still a profitable hobby. My knotting not only pays for itself, but generates money. Not nearly enough to be considered even a part-time income, but enough to make a difference. (It actually paid my latest dentist bill, which really saved my... day! ;))

What are your experiences of making money from knotting? What I personally find to be two of the major problems are:

A) In general, people simply have no idea about the amount of time and work that goes into the stuff we make (not to mention the time and work needed to acquire the skill needed!) and consequently are reluctant to pay a decent price

B) To sell also takes time and effort, time and effort that from one point of view is non-productive, as it could have been spent making stuff. This reduces the income per hour spent.

Lasse C
« Last Edit: October 11, 2005, 10:53:58 AM by Lasse_C »

knot_tyer

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2005, 01:18:49 PM »
hello Lasse...
....it has been brought up that we (knot tyers!) need a place on the internet to sell/buy our knots...however this site cannot be on the IGKT pages as the IGKT is a non-profit organization....i sell my knots mostly just for my coffee money and as favors to folks who request them...i do not advertise...i and several other knot tyers have wondered if anyone would be interested in a project like this to make a website where we could post and sell their knots??!...
Dan-Alaska

...comments please!...

Lasse_C

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #2 on: October 11, 2005, 02:48:11 PM »
Well, Dan, it might be a good idea!
There are a few practical issues that has to be worked out, as both those who sell and the buyers might come from different parts of the world, but I guess it might be solved.

A site like this might help reduce the non-productive time I mention as problem B. Someone would have to moderate it, I suppose.
I can also see that one or several person/s might have to decide on the items posted to ensure that the goods sold maintain good quality and workmanship. This is, I feel, very important.

Lasse C

Dan_Lehman

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2005, 01:58:57 AM »
Some years ago, I complimented Geoffrey Budworth on his handsome neckties
featured in KM, only to be informed that in fact the decorative structures were
rather larger than that.
Well, nevertheless, I continue to believe that decorative, knotted neckwear
could become a fashion item (though these, alas, tend to be short-lived things).
There are things that can be wrought in cord that can't be done w/fabric
--i.p., some alteration of shape, tie width variation.  Figuring how to anticipate
different sizes and how to tie it on would be engineering challenges (custom
orders would be one way--ties made to size--, but that would imply shipping
delays).

--dl*
====

knot_tyer

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #4 on: October 13, 2005, 10:16:05 AM »
...it is brought to my attention that an IGKT online store is not exactly completely out of the question!!...there may be more on this topic soon??!!!...it would be great if that could happen!...
Dan-Alaska

KnotNow!

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #5 on: October 14, 2005, 01:51:44 AM »
I would be a willing participant if it gets up and running.  A few years ago I thought I would never want to sell any of my work... but the first sale cured me of that idea.  Unfortunately our two best shows in our aera prohibit our selling from our display (tax issues).  So internet exposure would be good.  I tried Ebay with only limited sucess.
ROY S. CHAPMAN, IGKT-PAB BOARD.

Lasse_C

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #6 on: October 14, 2005, 12:28:38 PM »
Quote
I tried Ebay with only limited sucess.
My success in selling via ebay and similar is not just limited, but downright disappointing. First, it seems that crafts sell best when people can actually touch & hold the things. That makes an immense difference.

Another factor is that ebay and such is the buyers market, to 110%. People who buy things there are primarily motivated by the chance to get things for as little money as possible, what the stuff is actually worth is totally irrelevant! Actually it seems that how much they manage to go below the actual value is what defines how good the deal is. That is definitely NOT a market if you want to sell quality work for an honest price!

LC

« Last Edit: October 14, 2005, 12:30:08 PM by Lasse_C »

knot_tyer

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #7 on: October 14, 2005, 12:36:17 PM »
i love eBay!!...but i agree that eBay is not the best place to be putting your knots on for sale!...i tried it and it seemed that there was not much interest!!??...an IGKT online "store" for members to buy/sell their knots seems to be a great idea!!......now it is just how to figure out how to do it!!...
Dan-Alaska

deckhandiana

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #8 on: October 14, 2005, 04:34:05 PM »
I make key fobs to sell in aid of the Jubilee Sailing Trust - but they only sell when people can see and feel them, (usually on one of the JST trips as a memento) and also of course being enthusiastic about the charity.

 I don't see how it's possible to make real money out of knotting - it takes far too long and you really can't ask a market rate.  I'm lucky in that any money I raise for the JST is doubled by a mystery donor. (and if you're interested, visit their web-site at jst.org.co.uk - Tall Ships sailing for the able-bodied/disabled)

Still, my by-product is that, since I make dozens of key fobs with many different knots, I really get to know the knots!

Phil_The_Rope

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2005, 08:04:59 PM »
Hi All!

Like most folks, making money from knots remains just a dream for me. Sure, I get a free Guinness now and again for a bell rope, but it ain't going to make me rich! I recall a conversation I had with Des Pawson a few years ago, and he pointed out how he and Liz would often be tying the same bell rope over and over again in the early hours of the morning to fulfil an order. In Des and Liz's case, I can imagine how often they have little choice in what they tie - they have to tie what the order says, even if they would rather be doing something else.

As with many hobbies, I believe the best chance of earning money is to teach. If you can find a group of people who want to learn how to do something, then not only do you make (a little) money, but you introduce more people to a specific community. Of course, teaching is not simple, even for someone with great skills. An expert doesn't always make a good teacher. Having said that, Colin Jones once taught me over the 'phone how to tie a fender! That's class!

Finally, ebay - great for buying, not so good for selling!

I've gone on long enough ....

Phil

Fairlead

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #10 on: October 15, 2005, 12:31:04 AM »
I have found two ways to make money in this hobby of mine (ours)....
Firstly - Splicing, serving, whipping etc- I have no qualms about charging the going (chandlers) rate for splicing rope and although I do not seek work to earn a living (because I am retired) it does give me some credible pocket money.
The Second way is - Art - My garden ropeworks sell at silly high prices - but you have to market via a gallery and put a price on it that reflects its "Artistic" value.  Don't expect to sell too many though.

Gordon

Dee

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #11 on: October 18, 2005, 11:51:23 PM »
The only money that I have realized is from the sale of hiking staffs and walking sticks adorned with some basic TH and hitches. Fortunately there are many "Craft Shops" on the island that will take items on consignment. I usually take what I have prepared with me when we go camping and stop at a few shops to see if they will take any items. They get a percentage of the selling price, usually 25 or 30 %. With stripping, sanding, staining, knotting, etc. I estimate that I make about 7.5 cents [CDN] per hour and I usually give away more than I sell to Scouting friends. Does the phrase "labour of love" ring any bells??

Lasse_C

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2005, 11:19:21 AM »
Someone once said that as a craftsman you can make "What you like to make or what people ask for - and praise your luck if they happen to be the same!"

I think that maybe we stumble on this sometimes. The things at least I find most fun to make are those who really challenge my skill & knowledge. They take lots of time & effort, and the only people really able to appreciate them fully are other craftspeople of the same kind. "Ordinary" people simply do not realize why  they should pay that much money for it.

I have begun to try out a few things that are not very complex, challenging or advanced - but in some demand. After making the 10:th more or less identical item it is no great fun, but they seem to pay off! It will be interesting to see how it turns out...

Lasse C

drjbrennan

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2005, 05:50:25 PM »
I have been selling bracelets (portuguese sennit) on ebay for about a year, and demand far exceeds supply, I get messages all the time asking for multiple orders that I can't fill. The point is that I am a hobbyist, and like to turn out a bracelet on an evening, but would not like to be tied to it, with quotas to fill etc.
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nautile

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Re: Making Money...
« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2005, 10:44:12 PM »
Hi !
Just a little French story , from "Le Compagnonage".

Some stone masons are working on the building site of a cathedrale.
Questioned on their task, they answer:  
one, "I earn my living"
the other:"je size a stone
third one , a companion,:  "I build a cathedrale"
...
and I would like to add the secret I was told about:  
the fourth, the Master:  "I am contributing  to the Universe"

That leaves many "ecological " niches to occupy.
Cheers