Reply by Kookaburra

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Posted on Selling cutting boards and pens

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748 posts in 2252 days

#1 posted 08-13-2012 02:57 PM

Oh yeah, $20 for a pen is not too much. Pen collectors pay much more than that for nice pens.

Not much help as far as selling prices except to say, do not underprice yourself. As stupid as it sounds I would be much more likely to pick up and consider a $20 pen than a $5 version. I would not expect a $5 pen to be nicely finished, made of a nice piece of wood or have nice fittings, so I would not even bother.

Here are a couple of hints from the kind of person who buys this sort of item.

1. Make little cards describing the product, what it is made of and how to care for it. If there is something special, make sure you note that too (14kt gold, end grain, what kind of wood). Tape it or tie it to the piece – you can also note the price on this card but do it in light pencil (so gift givers can erase it). Tell them where the wood is grown and if you know a story about it (“this is the same wood ancient Vikings used to build their ships”). Put your phone number and web address – they may want to contact you about special orders.

2. Put up a display card with photos of the process and a brief description of why you did it that way. This can be a stand up board or laminated page – it does not have to be big, just available. People will pay more if they understand the work you did.

3. If you want to, buy some really small plastic bottles and fill them with food grade mineral oil. Not required, but that is the kind of thing that makes customers remember you – and maybe come back to buy more.

4. Have small boxes for the pens and either tissue or butcher block paper to wrap the boards. Have bags in case the customer wants one. Kraft paper bags with handles are a good choice and can be pretty cheap (just make sure they are strong enough to carry the boards for an hour or two – you could always put a pice of package tape across the bottom of the bag to help that).

-- Kay - Just a girl who loves wood.

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