Selling Your Crochet: Undervaluing Your Work

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undervalue

Don’t you hate that? You create projects for sale and someone comes along and says that your project isn’t worth the price you put on it. Those 60 hours you put into that blanket just aren’t worth fifty cents an hour to them. Or, they walk past your booth, shaking their head at the $15 you put on a hat that took you all week to create.

People just don’t seem to have the idea in their head that your time is worth something. That project that you created actually took time to create, hard-earned time and talent, talent that has taken you years to hone. Time that you could have spent with your family or friends. You put all your talent and love into a project and people just seem to turn their noses up at the price.

Then, there are others who expect you to just whip something up for free. Oh, you know who they are, don’t you? A lot of people just have absolutely no concept of the time you spend on your project and the quality, care and talent you’re selling, not to mention the cost of materials, of course.

I really hate that. We really do live in a society where many people no longer respect the work of others and so many people expect everything for free.

Turn about fair play, though. If you expect your work to be valued, don’t undervalue the work of others. Think about it. You really do want people to pay you for your work but I see so many people complaining that they can’t get people to pay them fairly and then they turn around and undervalue the work of pattern writers with exactly the same reasoning.

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve seen “Someone wants to buy this hat from me, but I’m not about to buy the pattern. Where can I get it for free?” I realize that “free” is a powerful temptation, but why on earth would you devalue the work of someone else while, at the same time, expecting people to value your work?

Everyone’s work should be respected from the pattern writer to the project maker. I love me some free patterns but sometimes, they’re just not free. Sometimes the pattern writer has spent days, weeks, months on a project for a pattern; time, like you, they’ve spent working on it when they could have been spending time with family and friends. They, too, have to put food on the table, a roof over their heads and put their kids in clothes. Why is it so awful to spend a five spot on a pattern? That’s the least expensive part of making a project after all.

I’m obviously not saying that you should buy all your patterns. That would be crazy. There are over 50K free crochet patterns on the internet. I post about fabulous free crochet patterns I’ve discovered for you all the time on Facebook. I have lots on my website. I’m not against them.

But, if the pattern you want isn’t free, respect that pattern writer as you expect to be respected. It’s only fair and creates good karma which, in the long run, is a win for everyone.

Filed in the “Food for Thought” category. 🙂

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10 comments

  • Yuliya

    Very well said!

  • BJMarley

    I’m glad you addressed this issue.

    If I like a designer’s work, paying for a pattern encourages that person to design more.

  • As always, you are awesome.

  • Catherine

    It’s one of the major problems of selling hand made items. People seem to associate handmade with cheap or free.

    They forget that yarn has to be bough, the pattern costs and then the time spent creating. We live in a society of cheap, throw away tat and hand made is no longer valued. Sad really.

  • Tanya

    What a well said reminder about respect. Hopefully this will be shared throughout the crafting community and we can move on to treating each other just a bit better.

  • Great post! I do buy patterns when I can afford to and am thankful for free patterns too! I tend not to charge a lot for my pieces and I do give away a lot too. But I am differently-abled and need to keep busy!

  • Ruth

    You are so right. Thank you for putting this in a helpful way. I love getting your weekly emails. Keep up the good work:)0

  • Very well written, Kim. Thank you.

    We all need to hear these words to spur us on to continue what we do….crochet, knit, painting, all artistic “crafts and hobbies”. I am a project maker and wish I could design. But I know my limits. My brain just doesn’t work that way. However, once I make a pattern I can put my own touch on it the next time.

    Also needing to be included in this group of talented people are the craft bloggers such as yourself and many other talented bloggers. I have tried to blog, but yeah, I just don’t seem to be able to pull the words out of my head to put in a blog.

    Keep up the great work. I have learned from you, read your blogs and made your patterns. Thank you for your hard work.

    Cin Berry
    Crochet Creations by Cin
    Sugar’s Sweet Stitches on Etsy.

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  • I always love to read what you have to say 🙂

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