A couple of weeks ago something happened that made me realise that if I had any intentions of progressing my hobby and making a career out of designing jewellery it would be unlikely to happen, unless I could find my own little niche in the market.
I have a friend who sells beads etc as well as jewellery and she was selling them recently at a local craft fair. I popped down to take a look and she was doing phenonominally well selling her beads etc but not her own jewellery designs. You see the problem is everyone thinks they can go home and make their own jewellery, some items take little skill or tools to make and can be made for a fraction of the cost. However, what they make may not last or be of good quality, but I suppose maybe that’s not what is important to them.
Also, whilst I was there I met and got talking to a lovely lady I hadn’t met before but knew through some comments she had made through The Crafty Network. Whilst I was talking to her, her daughter was looking through my friends jewellery, when she had finished looking she turned to me and showed me the bracelet she was already wearing, a chunky silver chain bracelet full of enamel charms and said I got this for £1 from Primark!!!
Wow, I suddenly realised no matter how many arguments you can put across about quality, child labour, mass market etc etc, at the end of the day, kids/parents/young adults only want to pay a small amount for something that will be thrown away/out of fashion a month or so later.
This made me come to the conclusion that if I was to continue with jewellery making and try to turn it into a business, then I would really have to work out who my target market would be and make and price items accordingly.
So if I or anyone else has aspirations of turning a hobby into a profitable business, my advice to myself and others would be to work out your unique selling point, design products that will help you find your niche in that big worldwide market. Price them well for your chosen market and if they take time and skill to make and it’s all handmade do not whatever you do under sell yourself, price accordingly. If you find your niche, whatever it is, market it well and hopefully the buyers will find you and you will then have yourself a successful little business.
Bye for now.