|Our WonkyDolls in Pack Rats in Columbia|
Getting things into shops is easier than you might think. Here's how I did it, both for our WonkyDolls (pictured left) and my hair accessories.
First, you need to decide whether you want to do consignment or wholesale, or if you want to try both. I would definitely choose wholesale over consignment if I had the option. For our dolls, we went with consignment because we were getting a decent percentage from the shop and we really just wanted a place for our dolls to be seen locally. For my hair accessories, I knew up front that I would only do wholesale. But this isn't a consignment vs. wholesale argument; you'll have to decide what is best for your product.
If you're doing consignment, they will have a contract for you to fill out with a listing of each item you're placing in the store. A lot of consignment shops my husband and I looked into do a 50/50 split, which we think is crap. Try to get at least 70/30. Make sure you stay in touch with the shop each month, I've heard of a lot of people having bad experience with not getting paid in a timely fashion when they sold an item.
If you want to try to get a wholesale order, you need to have a linesheet and an order form when you go into a place. A linesheet lists all your products with pictures and prices, so they can see what they want. Then you have the order form with all your contact information and they can list how many they want of each item.
|shops on Devine St. in Columbia, SC|
The key is to be prepared for them to order. Make sure you have everything you need to have before you step foot in the store. Don't be discouraged if they decide not to order, just give them a business card and tell them to keep you in mind for the future. Know the store, make sure you think your designs would be a good fit. Hit as many stores as you can. I know it's exciting to get things in a store, but don't undersell yourself either. If you're doing wholesale, have a minimum order, either # of pieces or amount. Don't settle for 50% consignment if you don't feel comfortable with it.
It's scary, I know. Every time I go into a store, I get so nervous I feel like a bumbling fool. But you just have to get out there and hit the streets, and don't expect people to come find you. Good luck!
P.S. you can find my hair accessories at Flowers Forever & Etc. in Columbia, SC
Next time: So you want to start doing craft shows?