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Does anyone have an etsy or folksy shop?

(32 Posts)
woollyideas Mon 24-Jan-11 10:56:12

I'm thinking of opening an etsy or folksy account to sell my hand knitted accessories.

Does anyone sell through etsy or folksy? If so, how good are the sales?

I can't help noticing that most sellers on folksy have low feedback numbers, which kind of suggests sales are slow. (Or maybe sales aren't too bad but people don't leave feedback?)

I love etsy and have bought from them, but most sellers are in the US. Has anyone got experience of selling on etsy and do you think being a UK seller puts buyers off?

I'm just generally wondering whether either of these websites is worth the effort of photographing, listing, etc...

DuplicitousBitch Mon 24-Jan-11 10:58:24

i have both. etsy moves really fast so unless you are posting stuff every other day your shop will get lost ime. i haven't sold anything on etsy

folksy is good, i did sell quite a bit before christmas. no one seems to leave feedback, i don't think customers realise they can, as i have had a few lovely emails thanking me for my stuff.

craftynclothy Mon 24-Jan-11 11:04:17

I do. I started off on Folksy and moved to Etsy after Folksy put their fees up.

I have to say that a lot of sales come from your own advertising iykwim. I find Etsy is a lot bigger so your listings can get lost in the crowd so to speak BUT I found the only shoppers on Folksy seemed to be other sellers.

craftynclothy Mon 24-Jan-11 11:05:16

Oh and I agree with DB about Folksy feedback. It's not at all obvious to buyers that they can (should?) leave feedback.

spikemomma Mon 24-Jan-11 18:09:20

Woolyideas - do you know how the fees work for folksy and etsy? I've always wondered. I hope you do get to sell your things on there.

DuplicitousBitch Mon 24-Jan-11 19:42:57

you set up your shop for free. pay 20p per item and then a tiny percentage of what you sell.

Flutterbye Mon 24-Jan-11 22:36:58

I've got a Folksy shop, I've got more feedback than sales, 'cause I've got feedback from the purchases I've made! Here. I've bought from Etsy too but not sold. As a newbie I had quite a few sales before Christmas, now restocking and trying spread the word. Good luck.

coldcomfortHeart Tue 25-Jan-11 12:59:53

hmm interesting to hear comparisons as I'm trying to decide which to go for too. Etsy just seems so big!

woollyideas Tue 25-Jan-11 15:32:08

Thanks everyone!
(Still not sure what to do though...)

I just feel that I spend so much money on my so-called 'hobby' and have such a high output that I ought to be recouping some of the money I spend on materials.

BTW Your things are really cute Flutterbye!

I know what you all mean about the sheer size of etsy. There is some lovely stuff on there but there's some hideous stuff too! I wonder if it's worth whatever they charge to be a 'featured seller'. Anyone tried?

DuplicitousBitch Tue 25-Jan-11 16:09:21

do a stall at a craft fair or organic market. hook up with someone else to share the costs.

DuplicitousBitch Tue 25-Jan-11 16:09:56

what sort of stuff are you making?

woollyideas Tue 25-Jan-11 16:35:21

Hi Duplicitous, been there and done that. Many years ago I was a metalworker and sold stuff to Harvey Nicks, Liberty, etc., and even Barneys in New York. Stuff that sold for £100 in those shops couldn't sell for a tenner in your average craft fair because it was just the wrong marketplace/attracted the wrong sort of customers.

I make hand knitted stuff now: gloves, hats, scarves, tea-cosies, etc and always use high-end yarns: alpaca, angora, cashmere and merino (no acrylic in sight!). Often the yarn alone costs about £20 for a scarf so I want to get my money back plus a bit extra. Normal response at craft fairs (did a couple before Christmas) was 'Oh how, lovely... how beautiful...' followed by an outraged 'HOW MUCH?!?!?' when they saw the label. I wouldn't have minded, but the prices weren't astronomical (£35 for a hand knit alpaca scarf?)

I'm not expecting to get a good hourly rate - just cover my material costs plus a bit on top. I charge about £15 for a tea cosy, for example, which has taken about 5 hours to make, but I'd rather give the stuff away to friends as gifts than sell it to an unappreciative stranger for a pittance!

That's why I was wondering about etsy... thought a wider (worldwide) market might mean a broader customer base that might include people who were happy to pay £30-40 for a quality scarf!

DuplicitousBitch Tue 25-Jan-11 20:00:06

oh get you !

i know what you mean about craft fairs. there are high end ones? give etsy and folksy a whirl it doesn't cost a lot.

woollyideas Tue 25-Jan-11 23:15:37

Hi Duplicitous, There ARE high end ones - but they are few and far between. Chelsea Craft Fair is good - difficult to get a space and quite expensive, but it used to bring in lots of serious trade! (This all happened in life before kids/single parenthood, you understand!) smile

Did I sound very poncey in my previous post? blush

DuplicitousBitch Wed 26-Jan-11 08:24:16

arf, you ponce! i made a few wee things to see how they sold alongside my other stuff but people did the whole 'what!' at the price. they are spoilt by primark, h&m. everyone admires scarves and things i knit dd and say i should sell them but when i tell them how much the yarn is it ismore than they are prepared to pay.

coldcomfortHeart Wed 26-Jan-11 09:12:14

Pricing is such an issue isn't it. I agonised over what to charge at the Christmas craft fair I did in November and in the end decided to just go for it- I was initially all for selling things cheaply but it would have been soul destroying!

DH and friends convinced me to up the prices (to reflect material costs, time etc) and I did get a LOT of 'HOW MUCH!' looks (from grannies mostly, who look at things and think, pff, I could make that!) but I sold almost everything. It was indeed a 'high end' craft fair though. £15 for tea cosy was what I charged too.

Totally agree with the spoiling of people's ideas of pricing by H&M and Primark. But then folk will quite happily wander into Accessorize and spend £35 on a sequinned bag that crumbles apart at the first use... grrr

DuplicitousBitch Wed 26-Jan-11 10:53:41

woolly i am dying to see your stuff now. can you link? are you on ravelry?

woollyideas Wed 26-Jan-11 11:13:40

Hi Coldcomfort - where was your high end craft fair? Can you spill? I agree with the Primark/H&M effect. One of the reasons I gave up jewellery and metalwork - which I used to do full time as my main income - was that I became unable to compete with cheap imports...

Duplicitous - I am on Ravelry but although I can see my projects in my notebook when I search for them as 'patterns' they don't come up. I don't know what I'm doing wrong. Are you on Ravelry? Do you have any ideas how to make my projects visible to the public? (I'll ask via a new thresd if you don't - someone must know!)
I know what you mean about the cost of yarn. Good stuff is very expensive. Made my sis a cardigan for Christmas and the yarn cost over £50. Ouch!

DuplicitousBitch Wed 26-Jan-11 11:21:11

you have to be a member to see projects will message you!

Kelziz Wed 26-Jan-11 13:38:20

I have a Folksy shop selling mostly crocheted items like hats, scarves etc. I've only had four sales, but even one sale would have more than made up for the listing fees for almost a year, so my view is that it really loses you nothing but time to have one.

People looking at Folksy are usually knowledgeable and prepared in respect of the higher pricing for good quality hand-made items. I've also sold a few clothes & accessories in acrylic on Ebay.

I'm sure I could make a bigger business of it if I had time to push on Facebook, Twitter, craft fairs etc but my DD is only 18mths so I only really have a couple of hours over the course of the day to both make and promote. You may as well try though, there isn't much to lose grin

Songbird Wed 26-Jan-11 16:24:32

I've sold stuff (mainly jewellery and cards) at fairs before (no high end round 'ere mind). I take a handful of 'posh' stuff, ie sterling silver, crystal, semi-precious stones, and sell a bit of that, but I mostly take and sell things that are around a fiver, certainly under a tenner - stretchy bracelets, keyrings/mobile charms, the cheaper earrings. Loads of that stuff goes. I do a lot of cross-stitch too, but could never make any money with that - takes far too long!

solo Wed 26-Jan-11 16:42:35

It's horrible that people don't want to pay for quality hand made goods isn't it. I get lots of interest in my bags and blankets, but not many want to pay for the work involved. Sad when you think of the tat that people do buy.

tyler80 Wed 26-Jan-11 17:16:29

I've sold a couple of bits on Etsy, but like others say, things get lost. You can end up paying more than once to list if things don't sell fast.

More recently I've used Dawanda which is European based. No listing fees when I set up shop (although that might have changed now) so nothing to lose. I've had one sale there so far but only been open a month

Colourworld Mon 31-Jan-11 17:24:12

Tell me, what do adults and children prefer to buy a plain toy (e.g. made from wood) and paint it or sell it unpainted for the others to decorate?
I would love to make some money on Folksy. I have opened an account but have not put anything on it. I read your comments and see that you might spend so much time and love and money on a project yet many customers do not value it and want to buy the item for very little.

FabiusMaximus Sun 24-Jul-11 13:56:49

I've got a shop on etsy. It's been a bit quiet in the last month or so but sales are otherwise steady and I have made sales in the UK though most of my customers are from the US.

I don't know how people have more than one shop though on different sites - it's sooo much work!

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