Mei Tais - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 of 9 Old 07-27-2006, 10:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
paschallraschalls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Any one out there sell MTs? I have created a new design and would like to sell some of them on the side, maybe one or three a week. How would be the best way to go about that? I also have a sling design and sew wraps also but I love the MT and there don't seem to be as many vendors out there.

A website would work, but local would appeal to me too b/c I would love to have interaction with the mammas in babywearing "training". How do you reach interested people in the community? Any advice would be appreciated
paschallraschalls is offline  
#2 of 9 Old 07-28-2006, 01:28 AM
 
mamarhu's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: dining at the restaurant at the end of the universe
Posts: 3,077
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 10 Post(s)
Are there craft shows in your area? Booth rental at small local shows is often quite reasonable, and you could try with little investment. Major expense would be the beginning inventory. But if you wore your own babe as you worked at the booth, I am sure you would get many interested custoners/parents.

Rhu - mother,grandmother,daughter,sister,friend-foster,adoptive,and biological;not necessarily in that order. Some of it's magic, some of it's tragic, but I had a good life all the way (Jimmy Buffet)

mamarhu is online now  
#3 of 9 Old 07-28-2006, 05:38 AM
 
art4babies's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 2,370
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I think there are quite a few vendors out there, but that is coming from someone who did it. I just got burnt out on it, although my business was more successful than I could keep up with. I may have more ideas if you want to IM me.

Amy
art4babies is offline  
#4 of 9 Old 07-28-2006, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
paschallraschalls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
thanks mamas for your help!
mamarhu- I'll have to check that out!
I would still be interested in anyone else's advice/tips Thanks again!
paschallraschalls is offline  
#5 of 9 Old 07-29-2006, 07:24 PM
 
bethwl's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Chicago
Posts: 1,175
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
I think your best bet for local sales is to do babywearing workshops (either for free or a small fee that could be applied to a purchase) and then sell the carriers that you demonstrate. It's hard, IMO, to strike that perfect balance of 3 orders a week and just stay there. While it may not seem like a lot of orders, it will require drumming up business and then when you do drum up business it can be hard to control how much you get. It's not likely to be even like that either, you will have rushes and then slow times. It's also a lot of work to sell yourself direct to the consumer (as opposed to selling more in bulk to a store that sells retail) and without an ecommerce website (or at least a very informative brochure site with many pictures and excellent instructions) you will likely spend a lot of time in emailing with people about the details of your carriers and sending them pictures and/or fabric swatches. This is the nature of any custom (made-to-order; that is what you were thinking right? or would you have stock made up and only sell what you feel like making?) sewing work. A lot of back and forth with the client. Which just means, don't sell yourself short by not considering the time you spend with a client to get their custom carrier made, not just your sewing machine time. It can be hard to strike a balance between truly compensating yourself for your time and being able to charge a price that people will pay.

Personally, I was initially selling my mei tais between 55 and 75. But this low end is really just marginally above what a wholesale price for a mei tai should be, IMO. Mei tais are simply tedious to make and the bulk of their cost is in the labor, not the fabric (I pay almost 3x more for my labor than I do for fabric per carrier). So I decided to kind of go all out and go away from the small, make-it-to-order model (because I also hate deadlines when I know a customer is waiting for something) and go for a premade, smaller selection of fabrics and attempt to go more mainstream (via upscale boutiques; if people will pay how much for a Bugaboo, I have to think there is a wider market for my mei tais, even though they cost more than all other mei tais--which are not cheaper to make I don't think but just underpriced?? I don't know). A very different path than a small WAHM home sewing operation and riskier, but I decided to give it a shot, give it a few years and see.
bethwl is offline  
#6 of 9 Old 08-08-2006, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
paschallraschalls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Hi ladies,
How do you choose you cotton for the straps? There are so many weights out there. Where do you buy your fabric?

How do you decide what to pay yourself for your time?

Thanks for your help! Still open for any ideas
paschallraschalls is offline  
#7 of 9 Old 08-08-2006, 05:45 PM
 
cchrissyy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Berkeley CA
Posts: 2,192
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
How about just making a bunch and whenver you go out, telling folks you make them (demonstrating by wearing baby ltos, of course). you could have a site to spread the word anbd elt people contact you, but not necesarily sell online.

Berkeley mom of 3 and President of Tender Cargo Baby Gear
and The Nurture Center Store and Resource Center 3399 Mt Diablo Bl Lafayette CA 888-998-BABY
cchrissyy is offline  
#8 of 9 Old 08-09-2006, 02:08 PM
 
afishwithabike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Third rock from the sun.
Posts: 5,039
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Craft shows, MOPS groups, LLL meetings, Birth circles, locally owned and operated health food stores etc often will let you set up a table for demos. Also local fairs will allow that as well. HTH and have fun. I'm right there with you.
afishwithabike is offline  
#9 of 9 Old 08-09-2006, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
paschallraschalls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 141
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks mamas
paschallraschalls is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Drag and Drop File Upload
Drag files here to attach!
Upload Progress: 0
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mothering Forums forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off