Today was a good day. I made my first commissioned sale……for some coasters, no less! I’ve never made even one coaster since I’ve had my Glowforge and it struck me as rather ironic.
I noticed that a small local coffee place here in our town was under new ownership when they posted their new logo on their Facebook page. I dragged the photo of their logo onto my desktop for reference. The image was a botanical drawing of a coffee plant and my first thought was that it would look beautiful engraved on some wood, so I did a Google image search and found it. It was a good high res. image and being in an optimistic frame of mind, I paid $12 for it. If all I lose is 12 bucks, it’s still good. I then replicated their logo to as close as possible without knowing exactly which fonts they had used. I made a coaster-sized engraving on PG cherry, but with a hanging loop on it, in which I put a piece of ribbon.
Last Friday, I drove down to the shop, introduced myself, and handed the engraving to him. I also handed him a card with my contact information on it. I told him I just wanted him to see what I could do and that if he came up with any thoughts or ideas, to please give me a call. He was wowed by the look of the engraving and immediately asked for a quote for 25 of them, but as coasters.
Taa daaaaa! Took the quote to him this morning. This is another new dimension in my Glowforgering!
You had a great idea and grabbed that sucker by the horns.
Congrats! Great way to go about it. And happy for you to get a decent order for the work you put in.
Great Job! Word of Mouth is going to be your friend
I love that you just made it happen. That’s awesome!
Henry Ford probably started just that way. Ha! You go girl!!!
Commissions really do feel good. Congrats.
Well, aren’t you enterprising! You did a wonderful job on the design and also doing something that I suspect was outside your comfort zone (cold calling). Well done!
Congrats! That looks great!
care to share the quote you gave him along with the cost/profit/time? I’m still unsure of how to price items to sell. I don’t want to overprice, but certainly don’t want to underprice things as well. i have about 10 coasters i got from the dollar store and have a few ideas for some fun quotes on them but have no idea of what to charge for em.
It looks wonderful! Congrats on your first commission.
I know you know. I remember when you were there, too.
Ha! I keep saying you know me. You really do. I had to give myself a little talk before I went calling on him.
I know what you mean…I’ve never done anything like this before, either. I have a little worksheet that I made for doing some calculating. I’ve done lots of reading online about all the different formulas for calculating this kind of thing and just did the best I could to make myself and my time valuable while not gouging the customer. He’s a very small business…and I’m an even smaller one. I’m thinking I will be able to hone this more as I go along. I wish I could come up with a realistic time for use of the laser tube, but everyone’s is going to be different. I added materials, of course, then a rather arbitrary cost per hour. Was going to charge $20 per hour, for the 11 hours engraving that 25 would take. I didn’t want to choke the guy with a huge cost, so I added on an additional $100. So, 25 coasters for $150. But, then instead of gagging the guy right off the bat with a big number, I told him the cost per coaster, which made it sound a lot more appealing. He ended up ordering using the price per coaster method, and ordered 20 of them, instead. I also gave up $20 profit and offered them to him ‘this time’ for $5 apiece instead of $6.
I don’t think it’s worth fretting over. It’s under warranty and they just posted the manufacturer warranties it for 2 years (I expect that was a misstatement by Support). Regardless, it’s gonna cost something less than $500 or $250/yr. Most likely it’ll last a lot longer. I’d just assume I could cover an extra couple hundred a year and focus more on my time & materials. Someday we might have more info but right now I’d just throw an extra dollar or two per job for the tube and move on.
(Not so far with the Glowforge but…)
I’ve used the following rule of thumb for years:
“What does it cost me to make it? Triple that.”
That doesn’t include the purchase cost of the machine, but it does include materials (including the tiny “Oh I have one of those already” materials), and any shipping/delivery/whatever.
Extremely complicated things (or things I really hate doing) get an up-charge. Extremely simple things (or things I love doing) get a discount
The triple comes from having enough to make one, replace the materials, and a profit to take home
Thanks. I sure agree with that. Too much math can get in my way!