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Warhauk

Different product types, same brand?

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I've recently gotten into leather craft and I've sold a couple of small items, mostly some dog collars. I'm considering going to a artisan/crafts market they are holding in my area soon but I intend to have an etsy shop made beforehand so I can pass out business cards with the shop link. My wife also does crafts but hers are more general, random crafty things like dry erase dinner menus and custom t shirt prints, etc. 

She wants to just set up one shop that sells all of our stuff but I feel like it might...for lack of a better phrasing, water down the brand image for my work. Maybe I'm completely off base with it, but I personally would feel a lot more confident buying a good quality leather wallet or belt from a dedicated leather company rather than from a shop that sells a bunch of random crafty, trendy things and also leather items.

In more experienced peoples eyes, would my assumption be correct in thinking we should keep the 2 things separate or am I overthinking it?

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I agree with you. If you only make leather goods, and your wife is a "general crafter", for lack of a better term, keep your brands separate as much as possible. It would be different if the items were somehow related (I mainly did spinning, knitting and weaving, but branched out into needle-felted greeting cards - still wool - and simple pennanular brooches to fasten my shawls - or anybody elses. A friend makes knives, his wife simple jewellery with scraps of the wood used for the handles.), but from what you write that's not the case.

Two Etsy shops shouldn't be a problem to create and maintain. 

If you both want to go to an artisans' market, check out the rules and regulations. I can only speak for my association, and there a leatherworker could apply, but somebody who irons bought pictures onto t-shirts couldn't  (well, they could apply, but would be rejected out of hand for lack of "special skills"). If the pictures were hand-painted by the seller, that would be different. But that is just Renn'Arts (which also forbids sub-letting stall space), you need to find out the rules for your market. 

As an Etsy customer I am also wary of shops that completely change focus and product halfway through. When flipping through felted dogs recently and suddenly there were embroidered brooches (without dogs), my spontaneous reaction was WTF...

Incidentally, a common theme like dogs could integrate your interests, with you making collars for the dogs and your wife t-shirts with dog pictures for the owners. And the place to go would probably be a dog show, not a general market...

Otherwise, your instincts are spot-on!

Edited by Klara

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4 hours ago, Klara said:

I agree with you. If you only make leather goods, and your wife is a "general crafter", for lack of a better term, keep your brands separate as much as possible. It would be different if the items were somehow related (I mainly did spinning, knitting and weaving, but branched out into needle-felted greeting cards - still wool - and simple pennanular brooches to fasten my shawls - or anybody elses. A friend makes knives, his wife simple jewellery with scraps of the wood used for the handles.), but from what you write that's not the case.

Two Etsy shops shouldn't be a problem to create and maintain. 

If you both want to go to an artisans' market, check out the rules and regulations. I can only speak for my association, and there a leatherworker could apply, but somebody who irons bought pictures onto t-shirts couldn't  (well, they could apply, but would be rejected out of hand for lack of "special skills"). If the pictures were hand-painted by the seller, that would be different. But that is just Renn'Arts (which also forbids sub-letting stall space), you need to find out the rules for your market. 

As an Etsy customer I am also wary of shops that completely change focus and product halfway through. When flipping through felted dogs recently and suddenly there were embroidered brooches (without dogs), my spontaneous reaction was WTF...

Incidentally, a common theme like dogs could integrate your interests, with you making collars for the dogs and your wife t-shirts with dog pictures for the owners. And the place to go would probably be a dog show, not a general market...

Otherwise, your instincts are spot-on!

Thank you for your input. I wouldn't want to do a dog specific thing because it isn't actually my specific interest, I was making a bdsm collar and showing some people I know and a buddy mentioned he would like to buy a dog collar from me and so I made a test one for one of my dogs and a few other people liked it and nade orders. Thanks for pointing out regulations because I hadnt thought of that and I'm sure my wife hadnt either.

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4 hours ago, Klara said:

I agree with you. If you only make leather goods, and your wife is a "general crafter", for lack of a better term, keep your brands separate as much as possible. It would be different if the items were somehow related (I mainly did spinning, knitting and weaving, but branched out into needle-felted greeting cards - still wool - and simple pennanular brooches to fasten my shawls - or anybody elses. A friend makes knives, his wife simple jewellery with scraps of the wood used for the handles.), but from what you write that's not the case.

Two Etsy shops shouldn't be a problem to create and maintain. 

If you both want to go to an artisans' market, check out the rules and regulations. I can only speak for my association, and there a leatherworker could apply, but somebody who irons bought pictures onto t-shirts couldn't  (well, they could apply, but would be rejected out of hand for lack of "special skills"). If the pictures were hand-painted by the seller, that would be different. But that is just Renn'Arts (which also forbids sub-letting stall space), you need to find out the rules for your market. 

As an Etsy customer I am also wary of shops that completely change focus and product halfway through. When flipping through felted dogs recently and suddenly there were embroidered brooches (without dogs), my spontaneous reaction was WTF...

Incidentally, a common theme like dogs could integrate your interests, with you making collars for the dogs and your wife t-shirts with dog pictures for the owners. And the place to go would probably be a dog show, not a general market...

Otherwise, your instincts are spot-on!

"bought pictures onto t-shirts couldn't  (well, they could apply, but would be rejected out of hand for lack of "special skills")" 

i agree with you completely especially making the two go together but if he tells his wife she lacks special skills, sh*t may hit the fan in a hurry lol. There may be two separate Esty shops and two separate bedroom's as well. The easy answer is two separate shops but I don't have a good answer to  the big picture, peace in the family. 

12 hours ago, Warhauk said:

I've recently gotten into leather craft and I've sold a couple of small items, mostly some dog collars. I'm considering going to a artisan/crafts market they are holding in my area soon but I intend to have an etsy shop made beforehand so I can pass out business cards with the shop link. My wife also does crafts but hers are more general, random crafty things like dry erase dinner menus and custom t shirt prints, etc. 

She wants to just set up one shop that sells all of our stuff but I feel like it might...for lack of a better phrasing, water down the brand image for my work. Maybe I'm completely off base with it, but I personally would feel a lot more confident buying a good quality leather wallet or belt from a dedicated leather company rather than from a shop that sells a bunch of random crafty, trendy things and also leather items.

In more experienced peoples eyes, would my assumption be correct in thinking we should keep the 2 things separate or am I overthinking it?

Go with two etsy shops if you can. Now at artisan shows or crafts markets you would want some cheaper and an assortment of goods to bring more folks to your table like klara says keep them related.

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5 minutes ago, chuck123wapati said:

"bought pictures onto t-shirts couldn't  (well, they could apply, but would be rejected out of hand for lack of "special skills")" 

i agree with you completely especially making the two go together but if he tells his wife she lacks special skills, sh*t may hit the fan in a hurry lol. There may be two separate Esty shops and two separate bedroom's as well. The easy answer is two separate shops but I don't have a good answer to  the big picture, peace in the family. 

Go with two etsy shops if you can. Now at artisan shows or crafts markets you would want some cheaper and an assortment of goods to bring more folks to your table like klara says keep them related.

Well it isnt that she doesnt have skills. The tshirts, she actually does custom images and screen prints them (or sometimes heat transfers with cricut). And her other crafts also arent bad crafts, they are just marketed on the cheaper end purposely. She is still finding where she really wants to go (im going to guess jewelry). My big problem is not that I'm afraid her lack of skill will reflect poorly on me, it's just that my leather brand (which is currently non existent but hopefully will start to build at least a little reputation eventually) will seem worse simply because it is sold along side a bunch of completely unrelated stuff, making it seem more like a general craft project than a well made leather piece.

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5 minutes ago, Warhauk said:

Well it isnt that she doesnt have skills. The tshirts, she actually does custom images and screen prints them (or sometimes heat transfers with cricut). And her other crafts also arent bad crafts, they are just marketed on the cheaper end purposely. She is still finding where she really wants to go (im going to guess jewelry). My big problem is not that I'm afraid her lack of skill will reflect poorly on me, it's just that my leather brand (which is currently non existent but hopefully will start to build at least a little reputation eventually) will seem worse simply because it is sold along side a bunch of completely unrelated stuff, making it seem more like a general craft project than a well made leather piece.

google leather jewelry you may be shocked, she can use your scraps! there are also tons of crafty things made with leather that wont  reflect badly on higher quality leather goods.They will relate and all will be good in the world.

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1 hour ago, Warhauk said:

Well it isnt that she doesnt have skills. The tshirts, she actually does custom images and screen prints them (or sometimes heat transfers with cricut). And her other crafts also arent bad crafts, they are just marketed on the cheaper end purposely. She is still finding where she really wants to go (im going to guess jewelry). My big problem is not that I'm afraid her lack of skill will reflect poorly on me, it's just that my leather brand (which is currently non existent but hopefully will start to build at least a little reputation eventually) will seem worse simply because it is sold along side a bunch of completely unrelated stuff, making it seem more like a general craft project than a well made leather piece.

Even if her skills are top-notch, it is still probably a good idea to keep very different products separate.  That keeps the focus of the store to they type of product being sold.  Each has their own identity to appeal to different buyers.  If a brand diversifies its product line, it can be a good idea to brand them differently.  For example - Would you buy a gun holster from Hermes or Gucci?   Probably not.  Would you pay $1000 for a handbag from a holster maker?   Again, probably not.  It's probably better to re-brand the newer line.

Just my thoughts 

- Bill

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On 12/9/2021 at 3:14 PM, chuck123wapati said:

google leather jewelry you may be shocked, she can use your scraps! there are also tons of crafty things made with leather that wont  reflect badly on higher quality leather goods.They will relate and all will be good in the world.

I absolutely second that! One of my ex-colleagues started out with leather shoes and boots and handbags, but they just had too high a price tag to fly off the shelves. So now he makes mainly jewellery, and it sells very well. 

Making doggy things was just an example  - sex would also be a common theme. Though maybe not ideal for a general artisans market... ;) The point is, there should be some logic behind the selection of goods in one artisan's shop, whether online or in real life.

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9 hours ago, Klara said:

I absolutely second that! One of my ex-colleagues started out with leather shoes and boots and handbags, but they just had too high a price tag to fly off the shelves. So now he makes mainly jewellery, and it sells very well. 

Making doggy things was just an example  - sex would also be a common theme. Though maybe not ideal for a general artisans market... ;) The point is, there should be some logic behind the selection of goods in one artisan's shop, whether online or in real life.

Funny enough, it actually was a bdsm themed craft market and I was in the process of making several cuff/collar sets for it. Unfortunately. the website my wife found the market on was incorrect on the date, and it had just passed, as opposed to being 1 week later.

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I don't think I would do that because I can't be sure that the product was purchased from a licensed supplier and is of appropriate quality. I once bought a leather belt for my wife, and the leather turned out to be wrong and started to crack after a small amount of time. Especially in a specialty store, you can buy almost everything on this subject: from various things to drugs to increase potency :) And what do you think, friends?

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My Wife and i setup together , i sell Leather Goods and she sells Jewelry. i have found that having her setup with me helps me sell more Holsters , The whole ideal was to stop the Lady with the Jewery long enough for Sell someone a Hoslter. (Not i sell Cowhide Purse also  

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