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Found 15 results

  1. Earlier this year, I was approached by a retailer who asked to feature my leatherwork in his shop. The retailer owns a well-known, independent gallery representing other area artisans. It's also located in a high-traffic shopping district. It sounded like a good opportunity and I agreed. After a few months, a change in the retailer's business model ended our partnership. But I certainly feel I learned a few lessons that I'll share here in case anyone else considers going down the "retail path." Lesson #1: Retailers take a big cut of the sales price. Retailers generally take a 40-50% cut of an item's sales price. This means you need to price your items accordingly. If adding 50% to the price of your goods is not feasible, then retail is probably not right for you. Also, keep in mind that your pricing must be consistent. You can't sell a belt at your retailer for $90, but charge $45 on Etsy. The customers will figure out the cheapest place to acquire your goods, and your retail relationship will come to a swift and inglorious end. Lesson #2: You should get a big benefit in exchange. Why do retailers take 50%? Because they're supposed to be providing value to your business. This value comes in the form of enhanced exposure, access to the business's clientele, joint marketing, and the value inherent in not having to file state sales tax returns, process shipping or provide in-person customer service. Now, 50% is a huge cut, so the retailer should be providing all of the above -- meaning, significant value to you. They should promote your goods via Facebook, broadcast email and other means. Lesson #3: Be picky. You don't necessarily need to partner with the first retailer that expresses an interest in you. Be selective. Visit the shop and look around. Would you shop there? More importantly, does the business cater to your target market? In my case, the retailer seemed to be a good fit for high-end leather accessories. They also featured jewelry and vintage home decor. But if I were selling holsters, I'd definitely find someplace else. Lesson #4: Build your inventory. Be prepared to meet demand for inventory, plus refresh your stock every 90 days. Your goal should be to establish a significant presence in your retailer's business. This means featuring a good selection of leatherwork. Different colors. Different price points. As an initial delivery, I provided 17 items. I've been told by other gallery owners that you should change out your stock every 60-90 days to ensure folks continue to see new stuff, whether it's selling or not. I hope this information helps anyone else who considers venturing into retail. I might also recommend the book, Craft Inc. by Meg Mateo Ilasco, which gave me plenty of initial pointers on working with retailers. Best, -Alex
  2. Hello, I’m looking for a name for my leathercraft shop/business. I’m not quite ready to start selling yet, though I would like to have a name and website started and a stamp with my “brand” made. At the moment my Instagram is “Crooked K Leather”: I’m not so fond of it anymore because it’s not too professional. Here is my dilemma, I would have liked “Hoffman Custom Leather”: My last name is Hoffman which is practically unavailable in every realm. I could use my name or middle name but I don’t want anything too feminine. I thought of naming the business after my father from fort worth who is fighting cancer and donate but his name is Jay Lynn. Which is also a big name in the leather world: Jay lynn gore –(Circle Y, pattern designer, Tool maker etc.) So I’m Kind of stumped on name ideas. I want to keep it close to home and short: ____ custom Leather or ____ Leather. I like letters and brands for my logo. im doing western style items and want to do tack in the future. Any ideas would be appreciated.
  3. I thought I would put this up for other people to use. I frequently found myself Googling conversions for various things when conducting my business and figured I'd put together a full time Excel tool to have it all in one place to easily access. What can this tool do? Convert Thickness: Enter in ounces or mm to convert to the opposite metric in decimal and fractions Calculate Square Footage & Pricing: Enter in the length, height, quantity per piece, and pricing per square foot for your project to get a cost of your materials. Ex: Entering $15 per square foot for leather with dimensions of 8.5" x 3.5" for 1 piece shows you that you're using .2066 square feet and $3.10 in leather materials. Convert Currencies: Enter in a quantity and select the currency you're converting from and to. Utilizes current market rates for conversion. Refresh data to update. Ex: 300 EUR to USD = $327.84. Dimension conversion: Convert square feet to square meters or sq. m. to sq. ft. Ex: 20 square feet is equal to 1.86 square meters. Or .29 square meters is equal to 3.12 square feet. It is nothing earth shattering as all of this can be done quickly with Google, but I found myself doing it enough that it warranted being put in an Excel file that I keep on my Google Drive to access whenever I need to. Hope it helps someone else out! DOWNLOAD LINK HERE
  4. Hello All, After spending an ungodly amount of time scowering all the resource threads I am having a hard time locating a good avenue to grow your business through an industry forum. We are currently in numerous local shops in the Indianapolis, Indiana area but looking for a forum that will provide communication between craftsmen and the buyer (wholesale). Leatherworker.net is such a great tool to share ideas and processes but I am trying to find something that can connect to the industry. We have attended trade shows such as MAGIC and Desert and Denim but would love to connect on a wider scale throughout the US. Any info helps! Cheers,
  5. Hey guys I am a 22 year old out of Seattle, WA and I just started my own small business called Raw Leather Goods LLC. I am currently making belts, bracelets, and key clips. I am looking to expand my range of products but am currently short of funds (full time school, part time work). Because of this I have started a crowd-funding campaign on Kickstarter. Please check it out and any support would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/sunnysid3up/raw-leather-goods-premium-full-grain-leather-goods
  6. I hope some one can help me with this. I have been making leather items for the past few years mainly as gifts and for a few local folks. I am wanting to give my leather business a name and come up with a product stamp. My question: what if anything do I have to do to make sure I do not infringe on anyone else's company or have any other legal issues that I am unaware of. I live in Colorado. Any input would be great. Thanks
  7. Hey guys I am a 22 year old out of Seattle, WA and I just started my own small business called Raw Leather Goods LLC. I am currently making belts, bracelets, and key clips. I am looking to expand my range of products but am currently short of funds (full time school, part time work). Because of this I have started a crowd-funding campaign on Kickstarter. Please check it out and any support would be greatly appreciated. Thank you! https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/sunnysid3up/raw-leather-goods-premium-full-grain-leather-goods
  8. This article appeared in the "Purse Blog." I'm including it because perhaps we should consider reason #6 when we price our products. Do you all think it is true? http://www.purseblog.com/listicles/8-reasons-spending-1000-bag-worth.html?all=1
  9. Hello everyone! I've been a long time lurker, first time poster. Thank you so much in advance for all of the wisdom that all of you share freely, it has been a wonderful learning curve and I'm enjoying the ride so far I am a director/photographer based in NYC and are currently looking for a fine leather craftsman around the area to do business with. If you are interested, please answer these 3 questions: 1. If you can create and design something today, what would that be? 2. Why do you do what you do? 3. Where are you planting your flag? Kude
  10. I have been racking my brain for the past few months and I have not been able to come up with a name that I am satisfied with for my one-man leatherworking operation. I really would just like some filler words, for example: mercantile, brand, works, goods, etc... I would love to use my last name (Petty), but unfortunately, the word "petty" also has a definition in the dictionary that is synonomous with lesser quality. But if I could insert a filler word, so that "Petty" isnt describing the type of leather, or the type of operation I am running, that would be ideal. Something like "Petty (insert word here) leather goods". Or am I just over-thinking this? Because, at the same time, I think that anyone with common sense would realize that no one in their right mind would use a negative word like "petty" to describe their own product, so they must come to the conclusion that "petty" is a surname. Am I right? I don't know! Does anyone have any good ideas? What are some common generic words people use in their leather company names, or even words that people use in the trade business? Thanks Zayne
  11. Has anyone tried the Xero accounting program. After reading the discussion on accounting software in http://leatherworker.net/forum/index.php?showtopic=53061&hl= I started doing some research on cloud-based programs (so I can access the data at shows, in the car etc). Xero looks promising for a variety of reasons. It was developed in New Zealand, but is being marketed worldwide. It's gotten very good reviews for its features and ease of use, and Forbes considers it a good alternative to Quickbooks online. I'm just wondering if anyone on this forum has used it? Do any of our New Zealand readers know people who have used it?
  12. I have been searching for the ways of how one can boost their leathercraft work more and let others know about the work you did and what you are offering. And I guess this is the right place. Borlino is the name where I make leather bags with the finest Italian leather of Buffallo and Vanchetta. With my craftsman we know what the people want but how to get them is what I am here to learn. Please give suggestions for the leather business. You can see some of my bags below :-
  13. We are selling everything in our business. Willing to sell altogether or part out. Please go to this link to see pictures. The files were too big for this site. http://austin.craigslist.org/search/bfa?query=leathershop&zoomToPosting=&minAsk=&maxAsk= Chandler 305-64 $1,500 Juki DDL-552 $400 Singer long arm 29k60 Landis in line finisher (sander, waxer, polisher) Landis Model K boot stitcher $8,000 American ModelC leather splitter Auto Soler Toe Stretchers 3sm, 2m, 1 large, 1 special, 2 upper boot, 1 in step $200 Misc tools St. Louis Shoestand $100 Saddle stand adjustable $150 Hand Stamps and tooling leather punches for making belts We are in the Central Tx area $30,000 obo for everything, a lot not listed Everything is in good working order, we were running just last month.
  14. I am not asking for legal advice. Just general discussion on the topic. What needs to be done in order to make profit from your crafts. Why is no one talking about this? Is it a taboo kind of question in crafts. If it is just no one reply and I will know better next time
  15. Looking for production help/ any want want to do piecework? I am in Atlanta and prefer someone local.... Please contact me: meredithjbridges ( at) gmail.com