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how much to sell my puppets  (Read 2916 times)
nall29
« on: April 21, 2010, 02:16:01 pm »

hi, i just wanted to know how much i should charge for my handmade glorified sock puppets in my local community... I'm aiming at the market of mothers and children or maybe as some sort of teaching tool for parents and their young kids, or just a toy for them to play with.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2010, 03:36:21 pm by Billy D. Fuller »
nall29
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2010, 02:17:40 pm »

sorry could not get my pic to load.
Na
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2010, 08:50:35 pm »

Andrew from Puppetvision used to have an Excel file that calculated the price for you. If you do a search of the forums, I think you'll find the original discussion on how to calculate these things. (I'm not sure if the file is still available somewhere - I have a copy, but I've modified it for my own needs)
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2010, 06:34:29 am »

Billy has a PDF file in his gallery that looks like maybe it is the output of the excel file but not the calculator itself. I don't think that Andrew has the excel file posted anymore.  I'll check my files to see if I have it.

That being said, more then likely for the market you are trying to hit it might not give you a price that would work for your area and the market you are trying to hit.  I am guessing off the top of my head that you are going to have to sell the puppets for under $25.00.  In fact if you could get them to under $20.00 in cost you are going to do even better. Don't forget that if you are going to sell them as toys they must be safe for the age group you specify.  No small parts that could come off and be swallowed. Smiley
Billy D. Fuller
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2010, 06:56:36 am »

Billy has a PDF file in his gallery that looks like maybe it is the output of the excel file but not the calculator itself. I don't think that Andrew has the excel file posted anymore.  I'll check my files to see if I have it.

That being said, more then likely for the market you are trying to hit it might not give you a price that would work for your area and the market you are trying to hit.  I am guessing off the top of my head that you are going to have to sell the puppets for under $25.00.  In fact if you could get them to under $20.00 in cost you are going to do even better. Don't forget that if you are going to sell them as toys they must be safe for the age group you specify.  No small parts that could come off and be swallowed. Smiley


I just re-copied it from his original to word and transfered it to PDF but it was from the original post he did here at P&S

Billy D.
Na
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2010, 07:07:32 am »

Can you really sell a good-quality puppet using the glorified sock puppet pattern, at $20 each? It seems really low to me. (I've never used those patterns, so I have no idea how to factor time/labour in)
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2010, 02:26:25 pm »

I doubt that profit would be very much on a $20 Glorified Sock Puppet but I also don't think that you would be able to get much more for it since there are so many manufactured puppets on the market that are around the price point. It can be really hard for an individual to compete with the mass market. Sad
Na
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2010, 04:01:16 am »

Ok, so it's more about the market comparison than the actual quality of the puppet. Disappointing, because as we all know, muppets are really worth at least a grand of labour/materials.

(Guess that's why my $40 shadow puppet doesn't sell Wink  )
Shawn Sorrell
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2010, 06:44:51 am »

Yes it is about market comparison unfortunately. I am not saying that you can't sometimes get a fair price for your puppets but it can be hard depending on the market you are targeting.

Here is a "real life" example. DoLores Hadley, which is the person I studied under, built puppets for years for use in her shows. She had little interest in building for others so when asked gave a pretty high price. When she retired from puppet making she began building figures and art dolls. She marketed them to the art community and those who had always wanted here puppets.  These pieces would sell for hundreds to thousands of dollars. This in part was due also to the fact that she had local notoriety due to over 30 years in the making.

Early on in her career she would not have been able to sell pieces as such a price in fact if she had been able to, more then likely she would not have performed.  The only reason La Famille (her puppet company) was born is because she was a single mom with four children she had to support.  She could do the shows and bring her children with her to work. In fact they help with the shows.
Na
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2010, 06:55:21 am »

It's exactly the way it works in the visual arts (ie. painting, sculpture, etc) fields. It seems the higher your reputation, the more you can charge.
MsPuppet
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2010, 05:06:21 pm »

I think it really depends on who you're targeting. If you target young moms with kids, and sell them as toys, then the price must be low.  If you target puppet teams (churches, schools, performers, etc.) you can get much more.

A lot of the "mass" market is made in China.  I cannot compete with their prices, but they cannot compete with my quality.  Many professional puppet teams have told me they won't buy the mass produced because (a) they want something different from what everyone else has, (b) they are hard to manipulate, and (c) they prefer to support local artists.  Our own team will not touch the mass produced ones, they hate them (manipulation issues)..
Na
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2010, 09:15:07 pm »

I cannot compete with their prices, but they cannot compete with my quality.

Who wants lead in their puppets? Wink

Glad to hear that your local teams are more understanding - more work for you!
MsPuppet
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2010, 09:14:48 pm »

Na - good point! LOL
nall29
« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2010, 04:45:36 pm »

thanks u guys! i just found out how to check my replies! lol you taught me alot on the topic!
ariella
« Reply #14 on: May 20, 2010, 08:56:58 am »

def. factor in your labor & your supplies. you can either start with something simple -- sell it really cheap -- not to shortchange yourself but just to gain some popularity -- then go a liiittle more elaborate and slowly bump your prices up. or the reverse -- start pricier, see how much people are willling to pay, and then work your way down.
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