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## cost of a mug (not price)

### Brad Sondahl on mon 26 apr 99

I well know the detailed list of steps (previously posted)
that go into making a mug. This is more of a cost analysis
of it, since I just filled a kiln with 100 mugs.
The various totals are for 100 mugs, at the end I will come
up with the cost of a single mug. If you would like to
repeat the experiment for yourself, put in your own weights,
clay costs, etc.

I just fired a bisque in a 7 cu.ft. elec. kiln with 100 mugs
in it
That represents:
75 lbs of clay for the mugs themselves
25 lbs of clay for the handles
100 lbs at \$.25/lb (cost when purchased by the ton,
including shipping)
Clay cost \$25.00

The bisque uses about 70kw to fire (local elec. is cheap, 5
cents per kw)
Bisque Firing cost \$3.50

The glaze cost is difficult to figure. From mixing lots of
100 gram tests, I'd guess the average mug uses around 20
grams of glaze. From the cost analysis of Glazechem
software, I'd guess my glaze averages 3 cents per mug.
Total glaze cost \$3.00

The glaze firing uses about 100kw to fire. The same 100
mugs will fit.
Final Firing cost \$5.00

Consider that the elements are good for fewer than 100
firings, and cost \$180 to replace. That cost is \$1.80 per
firing.
Shelves also have a limited lifetime, at \$30 or more each.
I would guess I spend \$60 per 100 firings, or .60 for each
one.

The total thus far is \$38.90 for 100 mugs, or \$0.389 per
mug. Whenever I figure out this sort of thing, I think I
should be rich. Unfortunately that is just the basic cost,

So then there is the value of the space used to produce the
pottery. This cost (particularly when rented) puts lots of
are. I know I bought my place cheap, and have paid for it,
so only have taxes and repairs still looming over me.

Finally the labor.
I spend about 1.2 minutes to throw a mug. I use 2 minutes to
sign, clean up, and add handle. .5 minutes to glaze. .5
minutes to move: putting in and out of kiln.
Probably 5 minutes total labor for each mug. (I do not
lavish individual attention on them.) Hmm, 12 mugs an hour.
Still sounds pretty good, even at a profit of \$3.00 per
mug. Why ain't I rich?

Well, there is the major hurdle of selling them. At least
as much time, energy and expense goes into this part, as
into the production part. That's why retailers get as much
for the pot as you do. And why you sit in the hot sun,
rain, and, strangest environment of all, the mall-- slowly

--
Sondahl homepage http://www.camasnet.com/~asondahl/
Contributing to the potluck of the WWW

### Jonathan Kaplan on tue 27 apr 99

>Clay cost \$25.00

>Bisque Firing cost \$3.50
>
>
>Total glaze cost \$3.00
>
>Final Firing cost \$5.00
>
>Consider that the elements are good for fewer than 100
>firings, and cost \$180 to replace. That cost is \$1.80 per
>firing.
>Shelves also have a limited lifetime, at \$30 or more each.
>I would guess I spend \$60 per 100 firings, or .60 for each
>one.
>
>The total thus far is \$38.90 for 100 mugs, or \$0.389 per
>mug. Whenever I figure out this sort of thing, I think I
>should be rich. Unfortunately that is just the basic cost,
>
>So then there is the value of the space used to produce the
>pottery. This cost (particularly when rented) puts lots of
>are. I know I bought my place cheap, and have paid for it,
>so only have taxes and repairs still looming over me.
>
>Finally the labor.
>I spend about 1.2 minutes to throw a mug. I use 2 minutes to
>sign, clean up, and add handle. .5 minutes to glaze. .5
>minutes to move: putting in and out of kiln.
>Probably 5 minutes total labor for each mug. (I do not
>lavish individual attention on them.) Hmm, 12 mugs an hour.
>Still sounds pretty good, even at a profit of \$3.00 per
>mug. Why ain't I rich?

Overhead accounts for a significant portion. I figure you don't have
employees, fine.

Hows about time spent for taking the clay in from the truck, stacking it,
opening the boxes, cutting, pugging/sectioning etc. Electricity to operate
your studio(outside of your firing costs), and finally, you need to account
for your time/labor. ALso you may wish to allocate a portion of your yearly
They are a direct loss of labor, materials, and overhead.

I would tend to be slightly doubtful of a profit of \$3.00. Gross profit?
Net profit?

A great post, and eductional one also.

Best,

Jonathan

Jonathan Kaplan, president
Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
PO Box 775112
Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
(970) 879-9139 voice and fax
http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign

### Barney Adams on wed 28 apr 99

How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.

Just my opinion
Barney

Jonathan Kaplan wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>
> >Clay cost \$25.00
>
> >Bisque Firing cost \$3.50
> >
> >
> >Total glaze cost \$3.00
> >
> >Final Firing cost \$5.00
> >
> >Consider that the elements are good for fewer than 100
> >firings, and cost \$180 to replace. That cost is \$1.80 per
> >firing.
> >Shelves also have a limited lifetime, at \$30 or more each.
> >I would guess I spend \$60 per 100 firings, or .60 for each
> >one.
> >
> >The total thus far is \$38.90 for 100 mugs, or \$0.389 per
> >mug. Whenever I figure out this sort of thing, I think I
> >should be rich. Unfortunately that is just the basic cost,
> >without overhead or labor costs.
> >
> >So then there is the value of the space used to produce the
> >pottery. This cost (particularly when rented) puts lots of
> >are. I know I bought my place cheap, and have paid for it,
> >so only have taxes and repairs still looming over me.
> >
> >Finally the labor.
> >I spend about 1.2 minutes to throw a mug. I use 2 minutes to
> >sign, clean up, and add handle. .5 minutes to glaze. .5
> >minutes to move: putting in and out of kiln.
> >Probably 5 minutes total labor for each mug. (I do not
> >lavish individual attention on them.) Hmm, 12 mugs an hour.
> >Still sounds pretty good, even at a profit of \$3.00 per
> >mug. Why ain't I rich?
>
> Overhead accounts for a significant portion. I figure you don't have
> employees, fine.
>
> Hows about time spent for taking the clay in from the truck, stacking it,
> opening the boxes, cutting, pugging/sectioning etc. Electricity to operate
> your studio(outside of your firing costs), and finally, you need to account
> for your time/labor. ALso you may wish to allocate a portion of your yearly
> They are a direct loss of labor, materials, and overhead.
>
> I would tend to be slightly doubtful of a profit of \$3.00. Gross profit?
> Net profit?
>
> A great post, and eductional one also.
>
> Best,
>
> Jonathan
>
> Jonathan Kaplan, president
> Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
> PO Box 775112
> Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
> (970) 879-9139 voice and fax
> http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign

### Jonathan Kaplan on thu 29 apr 99

0.0.
=`}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}0}----------------------------Original
message----------------------------
>How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
>chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
>put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
>let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
>need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
>to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
>as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
>
>Just my opinion
>Barney

Excellent points well taken.

True, you can't put a value on these feelings, And if you think that these
are indeed part of your overhead, then there cannot be a value put on them.

However, these are some of the thouchy feely parts of making pots that of
course make us feel warm and nice inside. They cannot have a financial
value asribed to them.

They do not contribute to the bottom line on a dollar and cents level in
that perhaps you may sell more mugs because you have made a connection with
the purchaser that is not based on financial .considerations.

I would submit that if these are the only goals of making pots, then you
either have to be financially independant and not worry about your bottom
line, or not care. I think that these are indeed part of making pots and
the other dollar and cents issues are extremely important to one's
survival as a potter and while I know that it is impossible to account for
every scrap of trimming or of gram of glaze material. we need to keep all
of these in proper perspective.

Jonathan

Jonathan Kaplan, president
Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
PO Box 775112
Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
(970) 879-9139 voice and fax
http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign

### dave morrison on thu 29 apr 99

i agree, in a local tourist gift shop you can buy a set of four fairly
unattractive, and genuinely mediocre coffee mugs for a whopping 75 dollars.
i thought it was a typo. guess i should be selling mugs!!!
-----Original Message-----
To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
Date: Wednesday, April 28, 1999 9:36 AM
Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
>chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
>put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
>let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
>need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
>to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
>as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
>
>Just my opinion
>Barney
>
>Jonathan Kaplan wrote:
>
>> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>>
>> >Clay cost \$25.00
>>
>> >Bisque Firing cost \$3.50
>> >
>> >
>> >Total glaze cost \$3.00
>> >
>> >Final Firing cost \$5.00
>> >
>> >Consider that the elements are good for fewer than 100
>> >firings, and cost \$180 to replace. That cost is \$1.80 per
>> >firing.
>> >Shelves also have a limited lifetime, at \$30 or more each.
>> >I would guess I spend \$60 per 100 firings, or .60 for each
>> >one.
>> >
>> >The total thus far is \$38.90 for 100 mugs, or \$0.389 per
>> >mug. Whenever I figure out this sort of thing, I think I
>> >should be rich. Unfortunately that is just the basic cost,
>> >without overhead or labor costs.
>> >
>> >So then there is the value of the space used to produce the
>> >pottery. This cost (particularly when rented) puts lots of
>> >are. I know I bought my place cheap, and have paid for it,
>> >so only have taxes and repairs still looming over me.
>> >
>> >Finally the labor.
>> >I spend about 1.2 minutes to throw a mug. I use 2 minutes to
>> >sign, clean up, and add handle. .5 minutes to glaze. .5
>> >minutes to move: putting in and out of kiln.
>> >Probably 5 minutes total labor for each mug. (I do not
>> >lavish individual attention on them.) Hmm, 12 mugs an hour.
>> >Still sounds pretty good, even at a profit of \$3.00 per
>> >mug. Why ain't I rich?
>>
>> Overhead accounts for a significant portion. I figure you don't have
>> employees, fine.
>>
>> Hows about time spent for taking the clay in from the truck, stacking it,
>> opening the boxes, cutting, pugging/sectioning etc. Electricity to
operate
>> your studio(outside of your firing costs), and finally, you need to
account
>> for your time/labor. ALso you may wish to allocate a portion of your
yearly
>> They are a direct loss of labor, materials, and overhead.
>>
>> I would tend to be slightly doubtful of a profit of \$3.00. Gross profit?
>> Net profit?
>>
>> A great post, and eductional one also.
>>
>> Best,
>>
>> Jonathan
>>
>> Jonathan Kaplan, president
>> Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
>> PO Box 775112
>> Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
>> (970) 879-9139 voice and fax
>> http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign
>

### Jeff Seefeldt on thu 29 apr 99

You also need to figure in the hours you spend each day reading posts on
CLAYART, Would you figure that time at the same rate as I'm paid for my day
job or at \$0.00, since i have yet to find some one to pay me for playing on my
computer?????

Jonathan Kaplan wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>
> >Clay cost \$25.00
>
> >Bisque Firing cost \$3.50
> >
> >
> >Total glaze cost \$3.00
> >
> >Final Firing cost \$5.00
> >
> >Consider that the elements are good for fewer than 100
> >firings, and cost \$180 to replace. That cost is \$1.80 per
> >firing.
> >Shelves also have a limited lifetime, at \$30 or more each.
> >I would guess I spend \$60 per 100 firings, or .60 for each
> >one.
> >
> >The total thus far is \$38.90 for 100 mugs, or \$0.389 per
> >mug. Whenever I figure out this sort of thing, I think I
> >should be rich. Unfortunately that is just the basic cost,
> >without overhead or labor costs.
> >
> >So then there is the value of the space used to produce the
> >pottery. This cost (particularly when rented) puts lots of
> >are. I know I bought my place cheap, and have paid for it,
> >so only have taxes and repairs still looming over me.
> >
> >Finally the labor.
> >I spend about 1.2 minutes to throw a mug. I use 2 minutes to
> >sign, clean up, and add handle. .5 minutes to glaze. .5
> >minutes to move: putting in and out of kiln.
> >Probably 5 minutes total labor for each mug. (I do not
> >lavish individual attention on them.) Hmm, 12 mugs an hour.
> >Still sounds pretty good, even at a profit of \$3.00 per
> >mug. Why ain't I rich?
>
> Overhead accounts for a significant portion. I figure you don't have
> employees, fine.
>
> Hows about time spent for taking the clay in from the truck, stacking it,
> opening the boxes, cutting, pugging/sectioning etc. Electricity to operate
> your studio(outside of your firing costs), and finally, you need to account
> for your time/labor. ALso you may wish to allocate a portion of your yearly
> They are a direct loss of labor, materials, and overhead.
>
> I would tend to be slightly doubtful of a profit of \$3.00. Gross profit?
> Net profit?
>
> A great post, and eductional one also.
>
> Best,
>
> Jonathan
>
> Jonathan Kaplan, president
> Ceramic Design Group LTd/Production Services
> PO Box 775112
> Steamboat Springs, CO 80477
> (970) 879-9139 voice and fax
> http://www.sni.net/ceramicdesign

### Dwiggins, Sandra (NCI) on sat 1 may 99

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Friday, April 30, 1999 9:08 AM
To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)

----------------------------Original message----------------------------
Dave,

Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
not mean anyone will buy them at that price. If the person making those
mugs truly needed that much money to cover the costs of production and a
decent wage, then, if no body buys the mugs, at least the potter knows he
does not need to spend the time making any more because he already has the
stock on hand. If the potter has to lower the price to get the the mugs
to sell, he would not be making enough money to spend the time making
more. If the buying public would buy more mugs at this price than you can
produce, then what you are being told is that you are under valuing your
time. The buying public WILL tell us if the time we spend making what we
sell is worth what we charge, IF, we accurately tell the buyers what our
time is worth. Now we are back to knowing how much it costs to make a
mug.

Andy Buck
Raincreek Pottery
Port Orchard, Washington

On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, dave morrison wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> i agree, in a local tourist gift shop you can buy a set of four fairly
> unattractive, and genuinely mediocre coffee mugs for a whopping 75 dollars.
> i thought it was a typo. guess i should be selling mugs!!!
> -----Original Message-----
> To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
> Date: Wednesday, April 28, 1999 9:36 AM
> Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)
>
>
> >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> >How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
> >chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
> >put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
> >let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
> >need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
> >to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
> >as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
> >
> >Just my opinion
> >Barney

### Barney Adams on sat 1 may 99

Hi,
I think knowing about what it costs to make the mug is important,
and one must not under value their time, labor or knowledge as applied
to producing the mug. Then again one needs to be realistic in applying
how much they want as a profit. It would be nice to sell one mug and retire,
by common sense. I doubt that I will ever get to a point where I would even
want to sell a mug for \$18.50. I imagine at some point due to demand for
pieces one may have to sell higher just to keep others from buying your stuff
and turning around selling it at gross profit. This doesnt happen for most peopl

and I personally wont worry about it unless it comes up for me.

Barney

Andrew Buck wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> Dave,
>
> Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
> not mean anyone will buy them at that price. If the person making those
> mugs truly needed that much money to cover the costs of production and a
> decent wage, then, if no body buys the mugs, at least the potter knows he
> does not need to spend the time making any more because he already has the
> stock on hand. If the potter has to lower the price to get the the mugs
> to sell, he would not be making enough money to spend the time making
> more. If the buying public would buy more mugs at this price than you can
> produce, then what you are being told is that you are under valuing your
> time. The buying public WILL tell us if the time we spend making what we
> sell is worth what we charge, IF, we accurately tell the buyers what our
> time is worth. Now we are back to knowing how much it costs to make a
> mug.
>
> Andy Buck
> Raincreek Pottery
> Port Orchard, Washington
>
> On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, dave morrison wrote:
>
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > i agree, in a local tourist gift shop you can buy a set of four fairly
> > unattractive, and genuinely mediocre coffee mugs for a whopping 75 dollars.
> > i thought it was a typo. guess i should be selling mugs!!!
> > -----Original Message-----
> > To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
> > Date: Wednesday, April 28, 1999 9:36 AM
> > Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)
> >
> >
> > >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > >How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
> > >chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
> > >put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
> > >let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
> > >need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
> > >to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
> > >as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
> > >
> > >Just my opinion
> > >Barney

### Jeff Seefeldt on sat 1 may 99

geeeezzzzzz guys,

a couple of you obviously think I'm complaining,,, not at all, like a lot of oth
I'm new to CLAYART, I love all the tips, secrets and experience being shared on
list server. I tell people all the time "there is only one thing that I do bec
I have to (go to work in the morning, I work for the governement, the only time
see clay between 7-5 is when I'm scraping it off my shoes from visiting a
construction site) the rest I do because I want to". The top of the fun list is
pottery and my computer and when I can do both at the same time its great! I've
learned alot in the last few weeks and met a couple nice people to chat with off
list server..

Andrew Buck wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, Jeff Seefeldt wrote:
>
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > You also need to figure in the hours you spend each day reading posts on
> > CLAYART, Would you figure that time at the same rate as I'm paid for my da
> > job or at \$0.00, since i have yet to find some one to pay me for playing on
> > computer?????
> >
>
> This is true, however, if working with clay is your business, you can
> write of at least a portion of the expense of your computer against your
> income tax. Clayart is an important source of business contact and has
> solid value as an educational tool. Both legitimate business deductions.
> Still, it is too bad you can't write off the time spent punching the keys.
>
> Andy Buck
> Raincreek Pottery
> Port Orchard, Washington

### fox hollow on sat 1 may 99

My mugs are expensive. However, I don't just rush them through. When turning
the foot, I also polish the rim so it is smooth to the patron's mouth, I turn th
foot, polish the foot, apply an iron oxide to the center of the foot, incise my
studio logo (a fox hollow emblem) and my name, and incise number for the amount
of clay it took me to throw the mug. I don't just slap my handles on, but spend
considerable time making them "grow" from the mug, very smooth lines; each mug
has my fox head button on the handle; the handles are generous, nicely balanced,
and well shaped. Also, I take great care with the glazing, using a dipping an
spraying technique. Beginning to end, I have one hour and fourteen minutes in
each mug. This is not everyone's cup of tea, but I am satisfied with myself whe
policing myself at every turn. Still, some of my pieces do not measure up, most
of these end up in my "graveyard for old dead pots" or in the hands of some of m
friends. Some of my potter friends think I have taken leave of my senses, but m
patrons know they are getting a piece of my soul as well as a vessel. No, I'm
surely not getting rich charging \$18 to \$20 for a mug, but it is necessary if I
am to continue in this manner and my patrons keep me pretty busy, and it's soul
satisfying and just plain fun.

Yours for fine crafts.

Jean Cochran
Fox Hollow Pottery
in the woods of Kentucky where the bright fresh green trees cradle our studio an
the birds are singing.

Andrew Buck wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> Dave,
>
> Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
> not mean anyone will buy them at that price. If the person making those
> mugs truly needed that much money to cover the costs of production and a
> decent wage, then, if no body buys the mugs, at least the potter knows he
> does not need to spend the time making any more because he already has the
> stock on hand. If the potter has to lower the price to get the the mugs
> to sell, he would not be making enough money to spend the time making
> more. If the buying public would buy more mugs at this price than you can
> produce, then what you are being told is that you are under valuing your
> time. The buying public WILL tell us if the time we spend making what we
> sell is worth what we charge, IF, we accurately tell the buyers what our
> time is worth. Now we are back to knowing how much it costs to make a
> mug.
>
> Andy Buck
> Raincreek Pottery
> Port Orchard, Washington
>
> On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, dave morrison wrote:
>
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > i agree, in a local tourist gift shop you can buy a set of four fairly
> > unattractive, and genuinely mediocre coffee mugs for a whopping 75 dollars.
> > i thought it was a typo. guess i should be selling mugs!!!
> > -----Original Message-----
> > To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
> > Date: Wednesday, April 28, 1999 9:36 AM
> > Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)
> >
> >
> > >----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > >How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
> > >chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
> > >put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
> > >let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
> > >need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
> > >to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to yourself
> > >as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
> > >
> > >Just my opinion
> > >Barney

### Suzanne Furman on sat 1 may 99

In a message dated 4/30/99 9:09:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time,

<< Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
not mean anyone will buy them at that price. >>
Well I am chuckling a little bit here because I sell some of my mugs for \$20
but they have intircate carved scenes on them and that price is probably low
for what you are getting......since a large bowl that I get \$70 doesnt take
me that much longer to carve the design on the outside.....so go
figure........and of course some mugs I sell for\$12-\$14 and they sell as
well but I wont go under that price.....of course different people treat the
idea of a mug differently.....the ones I make....and I have been fine tuning
these shapes for many years.....so they are balanced.....the car mugs
stabalize the liquid....etc....rims dont chip.....they feel light when they
are full of liquid because they are balanced and dont have a wad of clay at
the bottom etc.....People's hands fit into the handles...which are
comfortable.....and yes they are basically Functional.....So I guess it just
depends on what the mug has to offer the buyer and weather they feel they are
getting their money's worth..........Suzanne Kraman

### tgschs10 on sun 2 may 99

I'm not an authority on making money - BUT. I am an oncological physician
[also an attorney]. As a physician in radiation oncology, I could make
\$300,000-\$400,000 a year. I've retired and only do volunteer medicine, a
very small amount of law and now lots of pottery. I have been doing hobby
pottery for about 25 years and could barely wait till the day when I felt
comfortable retiring to make pottery. It arrived in Feb when I turned 65. It
has always seemed to me that art is worth [in monetary terms only] what
people are willing to pay. If I make something that sells out and seems to
be in great demand, I would raise the price. On the other hand, if I made
mugs that I calculated cost me \$18.50 to bring a profit and they didn't sell
and I need the money to live on, I would sell them for anything less that I
could get and quit making them. Fortunately, I have the luxury to do what I
damn well please and if I enjoyed making mugs ----- well then I'd own a
whole housefull and the world be damned.
-----Original Message-----
To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
Date: Saturday, May 01, 1999 1:14 PM
Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>Hi,
>I think knowing about what it costs to make the mug is important,
>and one must not under value their time, labor or knowledge as applied
>to producing the mug. Then again one needs to be realistic in applying
>how much they want as a profit. It would be nice to sell one mug and
retire,
>but finding the buyer will be one mean task. What we want should be
>by common sense. I doubt that I will ever get to a point where I would even
>want to sell a mug for \$18.50. I imagine at some point due to demand for
>pieces one may have to sell higher just to keep others from buying your
stuff
>and turning around selling it at gross profit. This doesnt happen for most
peopl
>
>and I personally wont worry about it unless it comes up for me.
>
>Barney
>
>Andrew Buck wrote:
>
>> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>> Dave,
>>
>> Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
>> not mean anyone will buy them at that price. If the person making those
>> mugs truly needed that much money to cover the costs of production and a
>> decent wage, then, if no body buys the mugs, at least the potter knows he
>> does not need to spend the time making any more because he already has
the
>> stock on hand. If the potter has to lower the price to get the the mugs
>> to sell, he would not be making enough money to spend the time making
>> more. If the buying public would buy more mugs at this price than you
can
>> produce, then what you are being told is that you are under valuing your
>> time. The buying public WILL tell us if the time we spend making what we
>> sell is worth what we charge, IF, we accurately tell the buyers what our
>> time is worth. Now we are back to knowing how much it costs to make a
>> mug.
>>
>> Andy Buck
>> Raincreek Pottery
>> Port Orchard, Washington
>>
>> On Thu, 29 Apr 1999, dave morrison wrote:
>>
>> > ----------------------------Original
message----------------------------
>> > i agree, in a local tourist gift shop you can buy a set of four fairly
>> > unattractive, and genuinely mediocre coffee mugs for a whopping 75
dollars.
>> > i thought it was a typo. guess i should be selling mugs!!!
>> > -----Original Message-----
>> > To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
>> > Date: Wednesday, April 28, 1999 9:36 AM
>> > Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)
>> >
>> >
>> > >----------------------------Original
message----------------------------
>> > >How do you put a price on the satisfied look of the person that
>> > >chooses your mug because it touches them inside? How do you
>> > >put a value on the creative expession you had the freedom to
>> > >let loose on the world? Some overhead will exist that doesnt
>> > >need to be figured in down to the nearst cent. Some work just has
>> > >to be done. Fair price is fair price. You have to be honest to
yourself
>> > >as well as to your market, but you can take this too far.
>> > >
>> > >Just my opinion
>> > >Barney
>

### dave morrison on sun 2 may 99

i think that we may as well add geographics into the picture. i live in
northern Minnesota, cost of living is lower here, and so are wages. i dont
think you could talk anyone here into buying a 20 dollar mug unless it came
with a years supply of coffee! what this means to me is that i throw off
the hump, i dont pull handles, i roll out a coil, cut it, flatten it, apply
some decor and put it on the mug. to finish it off i add a plane old studio
foot. i would prefer to pull handles and put a nice foot on it, but i cant
afford the time, literally. my mugs are very functional, nice to hold.
smooth to the touch with nice lines and good feeling lip, but i dont spend
more than 5-10 minutes each total time. i sell them for 8-12 bucks. if on
the other hand i am making pottery to sell in Minneapolis/St. Paul, i put
more work in it and a higher tag on it. i do tho subscribe to the
Mackenzien theory, (as i understand it), that i want my work to be used,
that is what i make it for, and is half the experience of owning it. i feel
that if the price is too high, it's likely the owner will not use it for
fear of breaking it. or someone that would truly like to have it and use
it, cannot afford it. perhaps that is why i still give so many pieces away,
and why i still drive a school bus. go figure.
-----Original Message-----
From: Suzanne Furman
To: CLAYART@LSV.UKY.EDU
Date: Saturday, May 01, 1999 9:13 PM
Subject: Re: Cost of a mug (not price)

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>In a message dated 4/30/99 9:09:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
>
><< Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
> not mean anyone will buy them at that price. >>
>Well I am chuckling a little bit here because I sell some of my mugs for
\$20
>but they have intircate carved scenes on them and that price is probably
low
>for what you are getting......since a large bowl that I get \$70 doesnt take
>me that much longer to carve the design on the outside.....so go
>figure........and of course some mugs I sell for\$12-\$14 and they sell as
>well but I wont go under that price.....of course different people treat
the
>idea of a mug differently.....the ones I make....and I have been fine
tuning
>these shapes for many years.....so they are balanced.....the car mugs
>stabalize the liquid....etc....rims dont chip.....they feel light when they
>are full of liquid because they are balanced and dont have a wad of clay at
>the bottom etc.....People's hands fit into the handles...which are
>comfortable.....and yes they are basically Functional.....So I guess it
just
>depends on what the mug has to offer the buyer and weather they feel they
are
>getting their money's worth..........Suzanne Kraman
>

### Joanne Van Bezooyen on sun 2 may 99

This is interesting. I think it would be very amusing if everyone made a \$20 mu
and then scanned a photo of it into ClayArt or to mel's website. How interestin
it would be to see everyone's interpretation.

Suzanne Furman wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> In a message dated 4/30/99 9:09:40 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
>
> << Just because someone is willing to sell mugs for \$18.75 apiece, it does
> not mean anyone will buy them at that price. >>
> Well I am chuckling a little bit here because I sell some of my mugs for \$20
> but they have intircate carved scenes on them and that price is probably low
> for what you are getting......since a large bowl that I get \$70 doesnt take
> me that much longer to carve the design on the outside.....so go
> figure........and of course some mugs I sell for\$12-\$14 and they sell as
> well but I wont go under that price.....of course different people treat the
> idea of a mug differently.....the ones I make....and I have been fine tuning
> these shapes for many years.....so they are balanced.....the car mugs
> stabalize the liquid....etc....rims dont chip.....they feel light when they
> are full of liquid because they are balanced and dont have a wad of clay at
> the bottom etc.....People's hands fit into the handles...which are
> comfortable.....and yes they are basically Functional.....So I guess it just
> depends on what the mug has to offer the buyer and weather they feel they are
> getting their money's worth..........Suzanne Kraman

### Evan Dresel on tue 4 may 99

Gee, I bought a \$20.00 mug from another clayarter. I'm convinced stout
tastes far better out of it than any other vessel. Or maybe I should
say total the experience of drinking out of it is far better.

A real bargain. So why are people acting like \$18.50 is outrageous?

-- Evan in W. Richland WA who spent the day brewing instead of potting.
That after going to Ice Harbor Brewing Co. yesterday where they were
giving away stout ice-cream floats. Surprisingly good.

p.s. Met a guy who liked to pan-handle, asking for a thousand dollars.
Figured it just took one.

>
> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> Hi,
> I think knowing about what it costs to make the mug is important,
> and one must not under value their time, labor or knowledge as applied
> to producing the mug. Then again one needs to be realistic in applying
> how much they want as a profit. It would be nice to sell one mug and retire,
> by common sense. I doubt that I will ever get to a point where I would even
> want to sell a mug for \$18.50.
>
snip
> Barney
>

### Phyllis Gibson on tue 4 may 99

In a message dated 5/3/99 12:26:35 PM Central Daylight Time,
joannevb@azstarnet.com writes:

<< ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
This is interesting. I think it would be very amusing if everyone made a
\$20 mu
and then scanned a photo of it into ClayArt or to mel's website. How
interestin
it would be to see everyone's interpretation.
>>
I have a mug I paid 25.00 for. Is it legal to scan it, if I bought it and
didn't make it?

Phyllis Gibson

### Joanne Van Bezooyen on wed 5 may 99

Okay....\$20 mugs aren't impressive anymore after hearing about how common they
are. What would a \$30 mug look like?

Phyllis Gibson wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> In a message dated 5/3/99 12:26:35 PM Central Daylight Time,
> joannevb@azstarnet.com writes:
>
> << ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> This is interesting. I think it would be very amusing if everyone made a
> \$20 mu
> and then scanned a photo of it into ClayArt or to mel's website. How
> interestin
> it would be to see everyone's interpretation.
> >>
> I have a mug I paid 25.00 for. Is it legal to scan it, if I bought it and
> didn't make it?
>
> Phyllis Gibson

### amy parker on wed 5 may 99

>I have a mug I paid 25.00 for. Is it legal to scan it, if I bought it and
>didn't make it?
>
>Phyllis Gibson
>
I would suppose so if you gave credit to the Maker!

Amy in Atlanta where the intoxicating scent of the Jasmine is flowing thru the
windows courtesy of the attic fan!
amy parker Lithonia, GA
amyp@sd-software.com

### Elias Portor on thu 6 may 99

I agree, if I like the peice and feel I can't live without it because it makes m
feel good and happy, I buy it whether or not at 18.5 or 20 and up. A customer i
not interested in all the junk we think about as creators, some say thats crazy
i'd never pay that much while others are saying its fabulous I want it I need it
My customers like what I make and are willing to pay for it because they 1. can'
do it them selves, 2. see it as art, 3. it makes them feel good. So why not.
Common sense on pricing doesn't work and when we get out of our own pocket book
really helps. I learned a long time ago what my budget is does not reflect the
same for others. If people will buy pet rocks for a price they will gladly pay
for something with artistic value very willingly. eportor

Evan Dresel wrote:

> ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> Gee, I bought a \$20.00 mug from another clayarter. I'm convinced stout
> tastes far better out of it than any other vessel. Or maybe I should
> say total the experience of drinking out of it is far better.
>
> A real bargain. So why are people acting like \$18.50 is outrageous?
>
> -- Evan in W. Richland WA who spent the day brewing instead of potting.
> That after going to Ice Harbor Brewing Co. yesterday where they were
> giving away stout ice-cream floats. Surprisingly good.
>
> p.s. Met a guy who liked to pan-handle, asking for a thousand dollars.
> Figured it just took one.
>
> >
> > ----------------------------Original message----------------------------
> > Hi,
> > I think knowing about what it costs to make the mug is important,
> > and one must not under value their time, labor or knowledge as applied
> > to producing the mug. Then again one needs to be realistic in applying
> > how much they want as a profit. It would be nice to sell one mug and retire,
> > but finding the buyer will be one mean task. What we want should be adjusted
> > by common sense. I doubt that I will ever get to a point where I would even
> > want to sell a mug for \$18.50.
> >
> snip
> > Barney
> >

### Joy Holdread on mon 10 may 99

In a message dated 4/29/99 4:51:21 AM US Mountain Standard Time,
jeffs@ksni.net writes:

> ---------------------------Original message----------------------------
> You also need to figure in the hours you spend each day reading posts on
> CLAYART, Would you figure that time at the same rate as I'm paid for my
> day
> job or at \$0.00, since I have yet to find someone to pay me for playing on
> my
> computer?????

newsletters as their "hobby"? How much is play & socialization how much is
research. So much of what artists do with their entire life influences their
work. Joy

### Lois Ruben Aronow on tue 11 may 99

------------------
On Mon, 10 May 1999 11:50:17 EDT, Joy Holdread wrote:

=3E=3E You also need to figure in the hours you spend each day reading =
posts on
=3E=3E CLAYART, Would you figure that time at the same rate as I'm paid =
for my
=3E=3E day
=3E=3E job or at =240.00, since I have yet to find someone to pay me for =
playing on
=3E=3E my
=3E=3E computer?????
=3E
=26
=3Enewsletters as their =22hobby=22? How much is play =26 socialization how=
much is
=3Eresearch. So much of what artists do with their entire life influences =
their
=3Ework. Joy

I worked in radio, and then television, for quite a while before
becoming a mom =26 a potter. Let me tell you, the socializing, the
reading the trades, conventions, blah blah blah is a BIG BIG BIG part
of that world. The same is true for other professions. I have a
insurance salesman friend who is in Hawaii right now on an incentive
trip.

For people who are very good at their work, whatever it might be, the
line between work and play often blurs.