How Do You Price Your Crochet Projects?

Value to Product
Value to Product
Value to Product

How Much Do Crocheters Charge for Projects?

How much do you charge for a crochet project is one of the most asked questions. Is there a formula for figuring it out?

Many people have different opinions and they can be wildly different from each other:

  • We have crocheters, like me, who are happy to crochet and give away projects at no charge.
  • Those in a craft show that gladly crochet and use the day at the show to be social and it’s really not about the money. So their pricing may be reflective if a good time out eating the BBQ Hot Dog Stand and not worried about making money to eat at the fancy sit down meal restaurant.
  • Some crocheters gladly give stuff away but at times will put a price tag on an item if it’s requested.
  • Some crocheters only crochet with the mindset to sell.

None of the above are wrong but with crochet, being hobby-based, it can give the illusion that crochet is cheap and should be done for free. Technically, that’s wrong in every way. It’s hard to compete when so many essential items are imported into North America. It’s hard to compete against the chain retailers who can sell at the hat for $5 and you need at least $20 – $30 for a handmade hat.

Mikey Yarn Bath
Mikey Yarn Bath

Factors to Consider

Some crocheters only charge for the yarn itself. Many crocheters will charge the following:

  • Just the yarn costs, no extra play money and will donate the time.
  • Double or Triple the yarn costs which covers the expenses and throws a bit more extra so you can have some play money.
  • A cost per hour which may or may not include the cost of yarn.
Michaels New Minas Store
Michaels New Minas Store

Cost of Yarn Consideration

If a ball is $4.99. The yarn cost really isn’t $4.99. Don’t forget to include the following:

  • The tax.
  • Any additional items like pom poms.
  • If you gift wrapped it or bought something special to give it to the person at the end.
  • Mailing costs.
  • Chances are, you drove, had someone drive or even took the bus to the store to get the yarn. Factor approximately 45 cents per mile. Use Google Maps to figure out the mileage. If you are going out for other reasons or whatever, you may not want to consider that.
  • If you get it on sale, don’t use that price as it’s not always on sale. If you have to make it again or buy more yarn, use the real price. If you get it on sale, that’s more money in your pocket. Don’t tell anyone, it’s none of their business.
  • If someone wanted something specific for yarn and a particular colour. Something you may never finish using elsewhere, factor in the price of the complete ball even if you use just a portion of it.

Take the price and add your mark up. For those just charging for the yarn. It’s either 2 x or 3 x the costs. If you feel it’s not right… you know the basic costs for you. This will determine if your time is worth it for this.

Yarn Stores of Nova Scotia, Canada
Yarn Stores of Nova Scotia, Canada

Hourly Charge

The hourly charge isn’t set in stone. You have to factor in some things.

  • How much do you really think you are worth per hour.
  • Your crochet is a skill set that you have developed in time. Through practice, you have built up your skills.
  • Nova Scotia Minimum Wage is $12.55 CAD. That’s $9.00 hour USD.

How important is it to you that you are paid like it’s a regular job versus working on the project just for the fun of it. For example, if I do a simple adult hat that will take less than 1 hour and I factor in the cost of the yarn. $20 CAD seems reasonable.

However, in a larger project like an afghan could be 20 hours to make plus at least 7 balls of yarn at $40. That would be approximately $300 CDN or 215 USD to charge. The true question, is someone willing to pay for that price?

The larger projects are where the costs get skewed and when the donation of time comes into play.

So you have to factor in getting your expenses back plus add in extra for your time, even if not by the hour.

The True Sales Price

The real price is whatever someone is willing to pay for your creativity. 

More Ideas

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Binky Boo Kitty Cat
Binky Boo Kitty Cat

What is A Customer

I’ve done the show circuit and been around long enough to know what a customer isn’t a customer. When a person is attempting to discount a person’s creativity for their own selfish reasons. Sorry, I’m not sugar coating tonight! It is exactly what it is! WRONG!

There are so many stories and I encourage you to share some of your stories in the blog comments below on your experiences.

  1. ‘So-called’ customers don’t honour their commitment or follow through with the items they requested. In the end, not wanting the item, leave you stuck with materials and a finished project you probably don’t need and cannot resell. If they are friends and they do this game, they really aren’t your friends, consider unfriending on Facebook. If they are family and do that, time to get that last rights will out and cross them off the list!
  2. Where the customer decided to give themselves a discount by not willing to pay the agreed amount. Next Christmas, give them a big fat lump of coal in their stocking! They deserve it! Better yet, run the stocking over with your car! That will make you feel better and they can kiss your tread!
  3. The customer received the goods and never followed through with the payment. I’m sure you know what to do. Social media is good at trashing people. Do your magic, they deserve it! Prepare for the feedback though… I recommend googling big words and smart comebacks for people who screw you over big time!

At craft shows, there is obvious behaviour in play:

  • Those who are kicking tires and wasting their own time because they are bored and thought a craft show would fill in time. Possibly licking ice cream cones and you secretly wish they would get brain freeze.
  • Other crafters who come in and are looking for ideas to go home and do it themselves. Basically, idea wannabes using others for inspiration so they can knock off the crafter. That’s just mean girl stuff… You know this type of customer when you see it. Either kill them with kindness or let yourself off the hook, it’s not you… ITS THEM! ALL THEM!
  • A person who likes what they see and determines the price isn’t right and pulls a cheapskate mode to start negotiations when there is nothing to negotiate. That’s my price… Like it or hit the road jack. Don’t come back no more no more… hit the road jack!

I’ve heard time and time again, “My prices were too high for my hats and I was losing customers!” You didn’t lose anything, the people who passed on by weren’t willing to compensate for your creativity. You are better to hold onto the item than to sell off the item cheap and be cranky about selling it cheap when re-sharing the stories. You made the decision.

So It’s Up To You:

I have found through the Creative Festival, charge a rate that makes sense for your time and materials. Come up with a sheet for your crochet journal that makes sense.

Sometimes you will win and other times you can claim you got your money back. Whatever you do, don’t sell it for less than you are willing to let it go for. If you do, just get some cheese to go with that wine!

Be true to yourself and stick to your guns… because you are worth it and so is your acquired skills and creativity!

Pattern Suggestions

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Baby Booties

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  1. Patricia Barclay

    Supply and demand, and market temperature. I sold designer hats for $40 each at a longstanding Saturday Farmers market in a little touristy inlet-side town. When I moved to a state Capitol, that only has Wednesday markets, that I can afford, I lowered the price to $30. I started adding scarves, selling them for $50 a set, or $30 a piece separately. I am currently sold out of those.
    I had one woman from asia ask to pay $20. I know it is their custom to haggle, but we aren’t in Asia. I told her I would, but the yarn was a very special, expensive yarn so I could not accept less. She bought it.
    What a great topic! Thank you Mikey, for being such a powerful crochet influencer! I love your tutorials, your crochet alongside, and your interminable spirit! Thank you!!!

  2. Kristina

    It’s hard to sell handmade items in my area, so I don’t plan on trying to sell anything I make. I did make some things for a charity fundraiser a couple of years ago. I let them know the cost of materials and the time I spent on each. When I went to the show I saw that they’d priced the crocheted water balloons, made from Bernat Blanket, about twice the price of the tatted bookmarks, which took twice as long to make. That was okay with me; most people won’t want to pay what any tatted item is worth, let alone pay a lot for a bookmark. I saw 2 woman, probably a mom and grandma, go back to the water balloons at least 3 times, pick up a package and talk. I resisted the urge to approach and tell them it was clear they liked them, plus they’re here to support a very worthwhile charity. Just buy them already! If they think they want to make some themselves, and they are pretty easy to make, the packet of 6 already made ones, benefiting a charity they clearly support, is a good way to start. I don’t know how many items eventually sold but they took everything that didn’t sell to another sale in another state. Hopefully it was somewhere that doesn’t have so many people who think they can just make that themselves.

    I also had a friend ask me on Facebook how much I’d charge for a baby blanket in a stitch pattern she’d found. I sat down and crocheted a swatch, keeping track of my time so I’d have an estimate for how long a baby blanket would take. Figuring I’d get much faster as I became familiar with the pattern, I cut my time estimate by about 25% and gave that to her along with how much yarn she’d need to purchase. After she heard how much time it would take me, she decided my time was worth more than she would want to pay. She does a little bit of crocheting, but is definitely at a beginner level, so I offered to get with her sometime to help her figure out the stitch to make the blanket herself, no charge as she’s a friend I enjoy spending time with, but she didn’t take me up on that either. It seems most who have dabbled in a craft are the ones who most underestimate the time and skill it takes for any particular project.

  3. Bonnie Ratcliff

    I made a specific blanket for a “friend”, (the Summer CAL in 2018, lots of new stitches & textures) calculated what the real yarn cost was, times 2 since she was a friend (someone else I would have x3) and gave her an up-front cost of $135 which was a little over 2x because it was a tight time-frame (last minute request). She agreed to the price and said it was fair. When I delivered it she handed me $85 and said “that’s what we agreed on, right”. I stayed calm and said “no I said $135. She paid it but it made me realize she did not value the blanket or our friendship. She later called and asked if I would make another one for her daughter in pinks. I said “sure! $185”, never heard from her again. LOL! It took me awhile to be ok with my decision since I had only been crocheting for about 2 years but in the end I feel ok with it. We’re still friends but I have boundaries now, and I feel good about that.

  4. Teresa

    If I charge For an item the person has to provide the yarn I keep the leftovers and charge the same amount for the yarn used I don’t do any item that takes more than four balls it’s not worth the time and effort most of the time they don’t come back after seeing yarn prices to many think yarn is cheep

    • Can’t say I blame you, anything on a larger scale I tend to do to personal preference as gifts

  5. Megan McHugh

    Pricing is also very venue-specific. The type of venue can make a huge difference in what people are willing to pay. Some juried shows may have hats for $75 and a booth might cost you $800 for the weekend, where a church basement craft fair with a $20 table fee might see a similar hat sell for $15. You really need to know your market to price. The last time I was reimbursed for mileage from work it was 58 cents US per mile.

  6. Right On Mikey! Only this year did I get commissions from coworkers after they saw what I can do, posts on Facebook. I thought long n hard on pricing, made up a price list & stuck to it. They didn’t blink an eye, one even paid me more for the King size blanket I made; she actually worked with me on yarn selection n ordered it n had it shipped to me. The blanket came out great n she n her fiancé were pleased to no end. 🧶👍🏻

  7. Tracey Anderson

    If people do not like the price of a blanket, I will tell them how much the yarn was, how long it took to make and “suggest” that they get the yarn and do it themselves.

    • not gonna lie I had to chuckle at “suggest” cause I know what MY suggestions are lol

      • Miss Daisy

        I used to give items as gifts but Never saw them use it so when asked if I’ll make something the answer is a big , fat No ! If asked why , of course , I tell them with just a bit of attitude.

  8. Enid Mary Shaw

    Hello Mikey. costing is a tricky subject. When I am asked to make an item, I let the other know cost of yarn to me, and give them choice of looking for cheaper yarn or let me buy. I always ask if I can keep left-overs. Cost of doing the work depends on size of item.. I always get yarn/money up front. Crochet/knitting I do for my pleasure and relaxation, it isn’t a business for me, so any profit is a bonus. Anyone not happy have the choice of checking out other crafters or shops. Hope you and Dan are safe and well? take care, xx

    • there is definitely no one set way on how to price, everyone has their own little way that works for them.

  9. Pansy Rose

    Some years ago a craft store I frequented was going out of business. Frequent shoppers, like me, were given insane deals like $1.00 per bag of yarn. I went back several times and got piles of yarn. It was awesome. A bit later, I found myself on bed rest during a pregnancy. What to do. I started making afghans with all that yarn. When I later tried to sell then at craft fairs, for the low price of $50.00 you wouldn’t believe the outrage I heard about how expensive they were. Folks just would not believe I was only asking for “cost of material.” It was actually less than that, but since I got the yarn for a steal, I thought it was a bargain price. Still no takers. I ended up giving them all away to friends and family. Even donated a few for charity raffles. Decided that if I had to give away my work, I got to decide who to give it to and it wasn’t going to be to cheapskates who wanted something for nothing. I still hold that attitude.

  10. Kathy Nolen

    Exactly, thanks!

  11. Samantha Buxton

    Generally I ask for the customer to pay for the cost of yarn plus $2 an hour for my time. The other way I determine if a project is worth it I’ll ask what they are willing to spend and then negotiate the price from there. Taking into consideration the relationship between the person and myself. I’m usually willing to lower prices for family and close friends.

      • Samantha Buxton

        I take into consideration who the person is. My kids (who are adults) I don’t charge. My Aunt who has cancer I usually charge about half price. My mother (who is a pain in my neck) she gets charged double and I let her negotiate to full price. It’s all about how they treat me.

  12. Kathy Nolen

    Hi Michael, I’ve been doing craft fairs for 15 years and know what the customer is willing to pay, so my prices are firm based on that. I have a huge stash, so I don’t consider cost of yarn. I’m retired and figure that I’m going to spend all my time crocheting anyway, so i sell my stuff so I can go on crochet cruises! Love you!

    • I’m with you there, I have my stash that I work from, I base on what I think is fair, or what I think I would pay for that item.

  13. Donna Harris

    Perfect topic, because anyone who is a skilled worker will have experienced challenges from “customers”.

    I’m definitely in two camps, some items I make for the sheer pleasure of gifting, other items I make for the sheer pleasure of making a little cash on the side. My side hustle!

    I am defo a x3 of yarn cost except for items that will take me longer than 1 or 2 nights. Blankets are definitely priced differently than beanies and booties. I make more money from face washers and scrubbies than I do from a blanket, but the pleasure of creating a beautiful family heirloom is rewarding to me and that’s all I need.

    Some people tell me my prices are too low, others won’t buy because they think they’re too expensive, but I don’t change my prices to get a sale. I’m making a little pocket money now for something I always did for free, that makes me happy and brings joy to the buyer. #winning

    • I get told quite often that my prices are too low lol I’m not looking to get rich, I’m looking to buy more yarn to make something else lol I tend to price for my area and what I know people can afford appropriately

  14. Christine

    I rarely charge a “fair” price for my time. What i do is figure cost of yarn for the project, and cost of additional notions including shipping if necessary. If it is something that i will be making many of i figure how many i can get out of a single unit of each item of materials. Then i will “round up” to what it would cost to replace the supplies then double it. For example the most expensive pillow doll for me to make costs me $3 in supplies, to replace the yarn, and eyes $7 for a cost of $10 then i double that to a selling price of $20. To make my pricing at fairs easier i charge the same price for all pillow dolls.

    • as crafters, we could never charge what our creations are actually worth, it’s a bit of science to come up with a price that is fair to the crafter as well as the customer.

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