How to Buy and Sell Secondhand Craft Patterns

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I enjoy finding craft patterns in lots of places and love selling them to people even more. There is nothing better than selling to someone who has been looking for that particular pattern for years. However, there are a few simple guidelines that I try to follow so that finding and selling patterns is easy and most importantly, makes me money.

FINDING PATTERNS TO SELL

1. What to buy? The items that sell well for me are baby knitting and baby crochet patterns, retro crochet patterns (such as ponchos from the 1970s), knitted doll clothes patterns and crocheted swimwear (such as bikinis).

2. Set a price limit on what you want to pay for a pattern. I will not generally spend any more than 50 cents of a pattern. Occasionally I will spend up to $2 if I know that I can make at least a $5 profit on selling it.

3. Check the completed items on eBay regularly. If you are a stay at hom Mum like myself, you don't always know what are the latest fashions and what sells well. This way you will know what to buy when you see it.

4. Go regularly to opportunity shops, secondhand bookshops, garage sales, secondhand book fairs and school fetes which have book stalls. You need to go often as sometimes there will not be anything worth buying and other times there will be boxes of what you are looking for.

5. Get family and friends to keep their eyes open for craft patterns. My mother-in-law checks the shops in her suburb regularly and has found many great patterns for me to sell.

6. Do not buy pattern books that weigh over 500g when packaged. The cost of mailing them is generally too expensive as they cannot be sent as letter rate and must be sent as a parcel.

SELLING YOUR PATTERNS

1. Use as many pictures as you can on your listing. People want to know what is in the pattern book they are buying.

2. Always try to put anything of interest in the title so that it comes up in a search. For example, if a pattern book has a christening gown pattern I will sell it for more if I put 'christening' in the title.

3. Don't always put just the cover of the craft book as your gallery picture. Sometimes a picture from inside the book will draw much more attention to your listing. I try to use the picture of the nicest pattern in the book.

4. When you list your pattern, try to always make the listing price as low as possible. I have found that people enjoy the excitement of bidding as much as winning.

5. Always list the postage cost within Australia and overseas. It saves a lot of time in answering questions.

6. Be polite and friendly with your customers. A pleasant experience will have them checking your auctions more often. (Some of my customers have even become good friends).

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