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Basket Week - The End

My self imposed basketry week is over! I am so chuffed with what I've learned by making these baskets. They're all based on basket recipes from a few books that I have. None of them are exactly what they should be, but that's because I like to fiddle!


The larger shopping baskets are awaiting handles (that's handle liners in them poking out) and the basket that already has a handle, needs it replacing with a stouter one. I've, rather cheesily, put a couple of twigs of corkscrew hazel in the basket vase thingy - I quite like it. Four of the baskets are already in use too, which is so satisfying because they are all structurally sound.


My mum came over today and was really taken with the 'basket/vase/thingy', which is lucky, as that's one of her christmas pressie's!

Tomorrow I'm going to put a more willow on to soak, this time for less time than I did with this batch, as they were slightly over-soaked. So next week I can start making all the christmas pressies!! Can't wait!

Hopefully I'll feel confident enough to start selling some of the baskets I make soon. I think people might like the 'basket/vase/thingy' (I need to think of a name for that!!), I enjoy making it too and it's my favourite basket so far.

If anyone wants to buy a basket for christmas or something, please feel free to ask. :o)


Any advice, on selling stuff, from you talented people out there would be very welcome! I've not really seen any baskets on Etsy or Folksy. Can you think of a reason for this? Postage shouldn't be too much of a problem? I'm going to apply my brain to this. Although I'd much rather apply it to making the baskets!

Thank you all so much for your kind words of encouragment. It means a lot to me and really does help to motivate me! Thank you. xx My fingers and wrists do need a rest now though, it actually aches to type! So I'll stop going on about baskets - for now!

hen
xx

10 comments:

  1. Wow - they look wonderful hen. Really beautiful - and I love the vase - such a great idea.

    About selling - I didn't do too well on etsy and my shop is now having a bit of a snooze. The main problem I found was that, as customers are mostly US based, it was very hard to set postage at a rate that wouldn't put people off but that wouldn't leave me out of pocket. More often than not I lost money on the postage. Saying that, it's a very well designed site, the commission they charge is quite reasonable and there's a great community connected with it - time just seems to disappear when you get enmeshed in the forums! Also, you get a subdomain address which you can use on any promotional material - which is great if your doing craft fairs or demos too.

    I haven't sold on folksy yet (although I'm planning to in the future) but it looks good - and is UK based which is a big plus for me. I think you'd have a great advantage too as what you'd be selling is unique.

    Personally, I found the best places for selling were craft fairs and farmers markets. Plus they're really enjoyable as you get to meet lots of lovely people and get to talk about your craft lots! One thing I found that really helped is to have a wide range of items of varying prices on offer - so as well as your baskets, perhaps some smaller, cheaper items (willow stars for christmas for example). Someone who just wanders in for a mooch is unlikely to part with £50 or so for a basket (not sure what the going rate is so apologies if that's a bit far off the mark!)on an impulse but might happily pay a fiver for a smaller item....

    Anyhow, I've waffled on far too much - hope you don't mind and that at least some of it is helpful!

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  2. I like the look of www.myhive.com and there's also www.allthingsoriginal.com and www.en.dawanda.com It's likely Folksy will be as big as Etsy in time.

    Trouble with craft fairs is that there's loads of lookers and few buyers, but it's good to have a website for business cards for future reference because they'll remember you if they're really interested. You can pay a fortune for a stall or table and not make any sales. One time at an outside fayre one June I was allocated a stall in the glare of the sun and some of me lead started to melt closely followed by moi about to collapse. Huh

    I love that there's a connection between you and Exmoor (which I love too and hope to retire to) and the Somerset Levels round Sedgemoor with willow. There's a fair few businesses down there harvesting etc and even making willow coffins. The area's steeped in history, a lot ancient too, around willow, so good on you.

    I'm going to have a think about what I would like to order, and I am sure word of mouth, I mean word of blog will bring you many customers.

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  3. Hi Hen, your baskets are looking good - well done.
    Is the brown steamed? I just made myself a steambox for those occasions when you need a little bit of brown and haven't got any soaked, though at the moment I'm working mostly in brown anyway.

    Selling via a farmers market is good. If you do it regularly it becomes your shop window. We do one once a month, and it averages reasonably well.

    Keep you a-goin' gal,

    Cheers,

    Bob

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  4. What blinky fantastic responses. Thank you so much!

    I've looked at all the online shop fronts now and registered with them for future, more experienced hen to start selling from.

    I think if I was to sell at a farmers market I would feel like a fraud unless I sold quite cheap. I would hate to under cut other basketmakers though with baskets that wouldn't be as good as theirs.

    The reason I'd have to sell cheap is that to date I've only made 20 baskets - although I've surprised myself that they're not wonky and can actually carry things in them!

    Kitty that's a really excellent point about having the full spectrum of prices on sale. I've been making decorations with the 'waste' willow from the baskets I made last week. It didn't occur to me that I could sell them too. :o)

    Lizzie - when my mum was round she said she wanted a green burial. So I'm to measure her up and get good enough to weave her coffin. Gruesome old lady. ;o)

    Bob! There you are! Glad to hear from you. Yip, the brown is steamed. It's my favourite. I think I'm using it a bit too much though!

    Just got to build up my weaving muscles now.

    thanks you lot
    xxxxx

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  5. Oh yes! I'd love a blackberry basket please. By the time the next crop comes around, I shall be mended and walking again, so it will be such fun to go collecting. If you're up for selling a basket, you can reach me at sarah at shepton-witch dot co dot uk.

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  6. Sarah! Yippee!! Thank you bean!!! Email sent!

    hen
    xx

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  7. Beautiful as always! Well done, you!

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  8. I love your baskets, they are so beautiful, and they look like they would be extremely functional also. I love things that you can use, but look beautiful in the process.

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  9. Your Mum loved the basket and is looking forward to another one on Mother's day so get weaving. Love you loads

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  10. thanks mum, love yooOOooo! xxXxx

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