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Author Topic: Wooden Bowls  (Read 2767 times)

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Offline Marcos Charron

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Wooden Bowls
« on: July 26, 2010, 01:24:16 PM »
OK

I have decided to start turning wooden bowls on the lathe for folks to eat from. I know people will pay an obscene amount of money for something to drink beer from, but what say you on how much would you be willing to pay for a quality, hand turned solid wood bowl?

Marcos
« Last Edit: September 17, 2010, 08:26:12 PM by Marcos Charron »
At the faire or in the wood shop, that's where I am!

Offline groomporter

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2010, 01:49:40 PM »
Speaking as someone who does some turning, I don't know if there's enough of a market to support a hand turned bowls for participants and playtrons.  :( An awful lot of people just watch for dirt-cheap ones at garage sales and Goodwill stores.
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Offline ladybootlegger

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2010, 03:32:08 PM »
I would be more interested in wooden shot glasses, personally.
I'm the one going to Hell, you were only watching.
~Billy Connolly

Offline Marcos Charron

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2010, 06:56:53 PM »
GP

Yep, kind of the sentiment i got here, though i just finished an order of 15 for the history snobs in CA.

LBL

PM me and let me know what sort of shotglasses you want.

Marcos
At the faire or in the wood shop, that's where I am!

Offline groomporter

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2010, 07:01:26 PM »
GP

Yep, kind of the sentiment i got here, though i just finished an order of 15 for the history snobs in CA.


Woohoo! That was the qualification I was tempted to add that the historical reenacting community or the HA factions of some fairs might be an exception.
When you die can you donate your body to pseudo-science?

Offline Woodland Artisan

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2010, 05:57:34 PM »
How about posting some pictures of your bowls?

I make and wholesale a lot of wooden treenware (bowls, plates, goblets, tankards, flasks, etc included) to Renfaires, SCA and other vendors.  I've been a professional woodturner for 16 years ... everything from the basic treen of craft shows, civil war, other reenactments, faires, etc - on through gallery art pieces and teach woodturning around the country.   I do the periodic larger Renfaire merchanting but most of it is demonstrating now (I won't compete with my retailers).   I like that much better than merchanting those events.  But, I digress ....

Wooden bowls, basic utilitarian bowls, for Renfaires do far worse (price-wise and sale volume) than the goblets and tankards.  As you're probably aware.  When, for most faires and patrons/cast, a $5.95 Wal-mart square wooden bowl made in some third-world country is considered HA you're not likely to see a good ROI if that's you're main product and competition.

For some faires, better quality bowls (in relation to your question) ... say 3rd tier gallery pieces sell quite well and you can get some good prices (without the gallery commission!).  Just as with the quality craft show and most art/gallery shows, location and time of year plays a big part here.  But, don't be afraid of putting some of the "good stuff" in there to see if the patrons of that faire will appreciate and buy those.  That's, of course, if you do any of the artsy, gallery types of turning.

Of course, in dealing with wooden products, you always have the difficulties in loss of inventory due to weather, heat, dropping(the better ones) etc. (unless you incase it inside and out in epoxy ... which I see SO much of at Renfaires ... yuck)  So, you'll need to really be able to make it cost effective by kicking out a bowl quickly and source your own wood.

Not to say that it can't be done and that you won't be able to do it ... but many hobby and "artist turners" have tried going after the utilitarian bowl market and not been able to do it in the Renfaire market.

Offline Marcos Charron

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2010, 05:23:17 PM »
WA

Will work on pics as soon as i get a chance. Right now working on hair sticks, a lidded bowl, a really nice bowl for a vendor at TRF and a few quill pen holders.

Really enjoy this more for the stress relief and making things for my Renfamily, have a real job, don't want to make this part of it.

Do you have a website with your wares on display?

Marcos
At the faire or in the wood shop, that's where I am!

ladylissame

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #7 on: August 01, 2010, 12:11:55 PM »
I know I personally would love to have a set of wooden bowls and plates, maybe even utensils. As wood some of my friends. We love the look of natural wood in many things.

Offline Woodland Artisan

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #8 on: August 01, 2010, 09:02:45 PM »
Marcos,

Ahh, well, then that's a whole different kettle of fish, so to speak.   I'd say go for it, then, and sell whatever you can while having fun in the process.  Utilitarian wooden bowls in the 8 to 12" range could go for anywhere from 15 to 50 dollars.  That's a wide range, I know, but it really matters where you're selling, wood type/color/etc. and quality.

Might I suggest that, as you said one of your main reasons for making bowls is for stress relief/hobby, you do it for charity.  If  your main interest is in bowls, then a great charity is "Empty Bowls".  There's a national organization concerning that but it isn't necessary ... go to a food bank, church, art or craft organization and offer to make bowls for people to buy and "fill with soup" for the less fortunate among us.  Basically and usually people buy your bowl for $50 (or whatever) and the money goes to the charity.  You get to make as many bowls (well, really anything is acceptable) as you want and get the satisfaction of really helping your community.

You can get to my website by going to my profile here on this forum.  Just click on "Woodland Artisan" on this post entry and there's a link to it there in the profile.   Of course, it doesn't have any of the items I wholesale but it does have a few of the other things we make.

Offline Magister

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2010, 01:47:22 AM »
All:

I've been watching this thread for a couple of days, and it is very nice to see people stopping by and sharing their thoughts.  Marcos, as WA has said, crafting and selling for a living is a tough gig, but if you feel you've got the market, or just enjoy it for the sake of it, then more power to you - and good luck.  

WA, thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts and experience with other members of the site.

As I said I've been watching this one for a few days wondering when the thread might get around to selling something, as this is the BST section after all.  As I'm sure you've read in the Section Guidelines, this section is solely for "buying and selling" (read: classifieds) posts.  

Since this thread is about the turning of wooden items I think it best falls under the Crafting Corner mantle.  Another good place to ask for feedback from other merchants (on market, pricing, etc.) would be the aptly named Merchant's Section of the site.  I'm going to go ahead and kick this over to the Crafting Corner for now.

If you would prefer it moved to Merchant's Marcos please just let me know.  

When you get some items you are ready to sell I encourage you to take a few pictures and get them listed in the BST area.  We have a pretty good streak going with items selling quickly.  Hopefully it can help you too.

    Thanks.

      - Mag
« Last Edit: August 02, 2010, 01:49:57 AM by Magister »
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Offline Marcos Charron

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2010, 07:55:43 PM »
Mag

No worries, will have a few things done in a week or so, will put them up here.

WA, will go to your site ans continue the chat there.

Namaste
Marcos
At the faire or in the wood shop, that's where I am!

Offline Magister

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Re: Wooden Bowls
« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2010, 10:19:02 PM »
Marcos:

  No worries.  It's just that BST is only for the selling and buying of items and this thread ended up more, "chatty" than selling. 

  You are welcome to chat here in Crafting Corner all you want, just remember that when you're ready to sell those items of yours put them over in BST.

    - Mag
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