Sunday, November 17, 2013

How much does your knitwear costs

Pricing your knitting

Of course it's a topic discussed over and over again. 
I used to approximate my knitted items based on the yarn and number of hours spent knitting.
Maybe sometimes the appraisal was not in my favor but at some point I was happy to see others wearing my creation, my handwork.
For smaller objects I used to work with leftover yarn on sale, so the pricing might have been OK after all. But what to do when you do a larger project , say a cardigan or sweater , which requires more than just scrap yarn, requires all your thought into it and not to mention the so precious time.
All this discussion has a starting point. 
I recently knitted a top down cardigan with a diamond pattern on the front and back with a 2 ply wool yarn on 2.75 mm needles (US size 2). Pics below.
Since I was proud of it I decided to make it into a knitting pattern for S,M,L and XL sizes and to put it up for sale on Ravelry.
So far so good, up till the point of pricing you patterns. After researching Ravelry I found that patterns may vary from 4-5 $  up to 8-9$ .
Based on the amount of calculations and time spent into charting the pattern for all sizes and putting it together and considering also this is my first time out on Ravelry I decided to price the knitting pattern called "Pastelle" for   5 $ .

So far so good.

One day I was wearing the Pastelle sample cardigan and I received a lot of compliments for it and one person also asked me how much would I  want to make her a similar cardigan . I replied that I don't know that but I would have to think about it.  At the same time she saw also a long and large scarf I had knitted and I told her that scarf would cost her 58$ ( considering the yarn amount plus 8 hours spent knitting). The scarf was nothing fancy just stockinette on the bias in 3 yarn colors ( wool, mohair and angora) but it was large and long ( could be made into a stole).
She thought it was a fair price for the scarf.
Since I couldn't decide myself on a price for the Pastelle cardigan she said:" Well do you think double the scarf would be OK?"
I was in shock . That was definitely out of the question . OK I get that the scarf seemed like more yarn , but it was simpler to knit  while the cardigan required time and attention . It it not something that you could knit while watching a movie or the news. Not to mention that the cardigan took me a week to knit ( that includes pattern drafting, sampling) about 7 to 8 hours a day.
Now do you think that she would pay about 400 $ for it? I don't know so I left my potential customer with the reply that I will think about it.

I also encourage you to read Terri's article where I found inspiration for my pricing dilemma.

How much does it cost?


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