Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Crocheted Cuff Crazy

red cotton and smoked natural bone beads

Blog Buddies--A loud call for feedback on a new idea!!

It's all just a wonderful experiment--I added some cotton to my crochet palette this winter (to join silk and linen) and from there, I've just mixed it up. Sometimes it's wondering what certain colors & materials might look like; other times, it's trying new structures out. A couple of the ones here can be found in my Bracelets and Cuffs section and others are still trying to happen.

So I've got a new idea and would love some feedback from all my blog buddies (and any other interested readers, of course!) I was thinking that maybe some of my crocheted cuffs could be sold as KITS that include the fiber, clasp, beads, and instructions etc. to then be crocheted and assembled by the buyer? Below & above are examples of some simple designs that could work this way for beginners.

brown cotton and "mustang magnesite" beads

gray cotton with metallic thread plus Czech fire polished crystal beads and larger seed beads

black silk, white bone beads and black "cat's eye" glass beads

I could sell these for half, or even less than half, of what the finished ones cost. Finished ones can take two or three hours to make, and so this time and labor, of course, shows up in my final prices. But I practiced putting a couple of "kits" together this weekend (I was clueless so just had to try it and see what it looked like!) and it wasn't too bad!! In fact, they can be kind of cute.....

So later, more advanced structures I have in progress are below. These require a little more experience in crochet, but may not be super difficult....

silk and mixed beads with my original ceramic heart and copper clasp
I like the way these heart designs can be worn with the clasp up or down

Silk with amazing Czech glass extra large seed beads in a metallic finish
I have not figured out how to write this pattern in words quite yet--it was kind of difficult but looks cool!

silk with mixed beads including glass, coral and copper with my original ceramic and copper clasp
(similar to the one above.)

I tried some (re)searching on Etsy for DIY, crochet kits, jewelry kits, etc. just to see what was already out there. Check it yourself--offers are all over the map and I was a bit overwhelmed as it was too much to take in all at once. Since I haven't quite seen anything like mine yet, not sure if there's any kind of interest? Besides being my own designs, part of the "pitch" could be to just compare pricing on the kit vs the finished piece?? Of course, that is based on the assumption that folks want to own these cuffs for a cheaper price.....hmmmm......

So everyone, voice your opinions: is this a good idea or not? Who has sold kits before? Who has purchased kits to make something special? I'm very curious about this.....

OK! Everybody YELL at once!! THANKS a million XXOO!


Anonymous said...

YOUR bracelets are fabulous (I like the gray one) but I am hopeless at anything crafty/handy. But I'm betting those folks who have a bit of talent and patience might like a kit...always nice when you can say "I made this myself"...

ArtSnark said...

Kits are trending right now - good idea. i'd suggest also pitching a tutorial of one of them to Interweave or 1 of the Stampington mags with links to your shop & kits

Anonymous said...

I think this is a great idea. There are so many people out there both crafty & not who are into DIY and learning new crafty skills. I think you'd have to be very clear with the "beginners" vs. "advanced" labels though.

Rose said...

I think that this is a great idea! One of my favorite things to buy on Etsy is supplies, and I know that I'm not the only one. Your work is unique and some simple crochet kits could be a great niche. Your pricing sounds good. I say give it a try. :) If they don't do well, you're not out much.

I agree with Nancy about labeling your kits with levels.

Anonymous said...

Love these cuffs! Great idea for a kit. You may also want to just offer only patterns and directions so that customer can use their own materials...just and idea.

I sold kits for yo-yo garlands last be honest, I sold out of the ready made garlands but didn't sell but two kits.

I wonder if people would be more apt to look at your item and try to make on their own or purchase a pattern from you and then make on their own instead of buying a kit.

WillOaks Studio said...

Thank you everyone for both the encouraging words and some great ideas!! It's perfect to get all this feedback as I muddle through this new project idea!! More soon!

icedgurl said...

trekking your blog!!!



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