Friday, July 11, 2008

Potholders are in Production

I ordered a really nice potholder kit from the company Live and Learn a few days ago, which arrived yesterday via UPS. "Why," you ask? I had been talking to a couple friends at our monthly dinner out about Emily's crafting projects, and ideas for things for her to make and sell. One of them mentioned that she'd love to buy some new potholders--hers had pretty much either disappeared or were in bad shape. And the other friend said she could use some more as well. So they both ended up saying they'd each order 6 from Emily if she would make them. Wow--a new business with pre-orders!

So I asked Emily if she was interested after I got home, and told her there were 12 potholders already requested. She was very excited about all this, and that lead to my search for a decent loom. Our plastic one was broken and we had few loops left, if any. Plus, my friends said they wanted 100% cotton, so they wouldn't melt. Made sense to me. :) I found you can also buy 100% wool loops, at almost twice the price. But I bet they turn out really nice! The loom we bought (Emily will repay me a portion of the cost each time she sells a potholder) is a 7 inch frame, which makes an approx. 6 inch potholder. It's made by Harrisville Designs.

Mary, note the bag of pure purple!

When I asked my friends what they would pay for a potholder, one immediately said $5 each. I was rather surprised and thought it was high, but now that I've looked into the cost for the cotton loops and frame, I'm re-evaluating. LOL A quick price-check on Etsy shows them being sold for between $5 and $6 for a pair, for what I think are all-cotton loops, plus shipping, which adds about another $3. (Some being sold are cotton-blends.) And I can't find any that are wool. Hmm, new market right there! Anyway, since we can hand-deliver Emily's products, or she can sell them in person at the Live and Learn UNtrepreneurial Fair, I am hoping that $4 is a fair price to ask. The market will tell!

I ended up starting a "business log" for Emily, so we can both track the costs and gross vs net income, and figure out what her profit margin will be for these items, as well as the jewelry and other crafts she plans to sell. I'm excited about teaching her about this aspect of business, but I'm still not sure she's interested in learning it just yet. Maybe when she sees the profit numbers, she'll change her mind!

Crocheting the edges to finish.

She already finished three potholders yesterday afternoon, and I had fun making one myself, while she's started on a new one this morning. The completed pieces:

Just for a size comparison (and this is the one I made).

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Anonymous said...

I love the look of these potholders, they look sturdy and right out of the 50's? I would like to order 2 from you Emily.

Thanks. Nonna