Monday, January 17, 2011

Selling Upcycled Furniture~Tips from a Newbie

I am pretty new to this furniture painting business but have realized a couple of things along the way. So, since I have nothing painted to show you since life has gotten in the way and I have to deal w/ some time consuming nonsense, won't bore you w/ the details. I figured I'd share some things that over the past few weeks have helped me find my garage free of my painted furniture and in to homes that really appreciate and love them.

1)  List it on CL but don't forget about it. Just because the first time around you didn't get a response aside from the spammers who have nothing better to do w/ their time, doesn't mean it won't find a home other than your garage. Relist it every couple of weeks and eventually a buyer will come. Relist, relist and again relist, besides it's FREE.

2) I created a web site about 6 months ago. At the time it seemed like the direction to go for me. It made me feel like I was taking it to the next level instead of just a hobby. I was big into shabby chic mosaics at the time but realized the niche was way too small. But, this was a good thing for me because I took what I was doing more seriously. My opinion, if you're just starting out, go to #3. Save yourself some money.

3) Etsy.. Inexpensive at 3.5% that they take off the sale and 20 cents a listing. Way cheaper than Ebay. The exposure is fantastic especially if you're dealing w/ smaller, shippable items, night stands, entry tables, etc. I made a few sales in just a couple of weeks. Trust me, try it you have nothing to lose. Yup, boxing, preparing to ship is a big drag but at least you'll have space for your new finds.

4) Flickr...if you don't flickr, try it. It's another freebie and you can attach your web site or etsy shop to your photos of what you're selling.

5) Blog...we all do it, well most of us reading this do but it is amazing to me how many stumble across my blog by google searching something they are interested in buying. I have to do that more often, attach my web/etsy site to the pieces I am looking to sell. Note to self!

6) Lastly, tell everyone you know about what you do. Word of mouth is an excellent resource. And above all, . don't give up. We do this because it's our passion and how great is that?

                                      ****A LITTLE SIDE NOTE****3/5/2014
I recently started a small business selling knobs for your furniture makeovers. I figured I'm always looking for pretty and interesting knobs for my redos, why not have some for me and sell some too? You can find me on Etsy at

I would love to hear how you sell your upcycled furniture. Please share, we can all use some tips, thanks for taking the time to read my blah, blah, blah, blogging! Yup, I have the gift of gab. I had a woman over here today picking up a piece of furniture, must have talked her ear off for a good hour. Her daughter wound up playing video games w/ my girls while we chatted in my kitchen. Love meeting new people probably why I love this blogging thing so much.


Kim @ A Brush of Whimsy said...

Great tips! That's so funny about chatting in the kitchen!

Chrissie said...

Those are all great tips!

Lisalulu said...

thanks so much I needed to hear ALL of these things!!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Sue!

How goes it? Great selling tips! I'm always scared to post on CL because I buy things off of there. Weird, I know! Maybe, I'll take your advice and try it.

Hope you had a great weekend!

{{Hugs}} ~Michelle

Sharon @ Elizabeth & Co. said...

Great tips, Sue! You are doing a great job here! Be sure to check my latest post. Sending The Stylish Blogger Award your way!

The Polka Dot Closet said...

Yea, a fellow Mersman painter...We are both going to jail LOL I have never tried Craigs list, it is so tempting because it is free.


Amanda@RelovedRubbish said...

Thanks for all the selling tips Sue! I sell my furniture and accessories at a co-op shop, but I have been wanting to start an Etsy shop too. I think I might as well try it. Craigslist is a great idea too.

Bethany28594 said...

Thank you for the tips! I never thought about Craigslist! I have my stuff in a shop and it's not selling, but I think the shoppers for that store aren't looking for furniture. I think I might pull my stuff out and put it in a store with more variety.

Gerry said...

Most importantly, remember to keep all these social networking accounts updated and filled with photographs of your lovely furniture. In that way, entrepreneurs can constantly attract and get the attention of their customers leading them to increase their sales.

Gerry Bossier

Mebo Upcycling and Art said...

Hi. Ive just tried to find some tips how to sell the furniture Im restoring and here we go... The latest project I have done was my 4th one...First three items Ive done for myself and in the meantime I discovered that I quite liked what I was doing and that I may continue doing that so I can grow my income...the thing is that Im afraid that no one will buy it :( at lease Im not spending a fortune with that....I wonder how to set it up correctly and make it a business. I havent got a blog or website yet...I have a FB page witch was done for my jewellery arts...I will continue and I will post a pictures of the furniture Ive renewed there and you are welcome to view it and comment...I need a good motivation from someone who does it longer than me :)

Mebo Upcycling and Art said...

and thats a link to my page

o sexo como arte... said...

hi i love the tips ...and at moment i got tha problem as well i can sell my furniture so defferente ....have a look ad tell me your opinion please ....thanks

Primrose said...

Hi - I am loving the tips. I am in the same position in that I am quite new to this upcycling, but absolutely love the creative side of it. Very relaxing after a stressful day with toddlers. I too only have a FB at the moment, if anyone wants to take a look I would appreciate feedback.

Thanks. Jenny

Primrose said...

Oh, I should mention, I am in Scotland which also makes things difficult in terms of shipping any items sold. Does anyone have any courier tips?

Unknown said...

HI there, I do have a etsy shop with my painted furniture. Sold my first custom order last week. i decided to just have my smaller items on there, because shipping large items seems really stressful to me. i also have a blog, and fan page on facebook. Personally, I really want to sell locally so I can bypass shipping, but the economy I live in is not the best and people will not pay what I need to charge. Do you do this full-time? I do not think I could ever make enough money to do this for my full time job.

Unknown said...

Just in case you want to see my work it is

Tiago said...

Great tips! I love make things at home, I just repaired a table I had for years in the garage and was a bit damage. I have bought trough a
top real estate agents in sidney a new flat and I have to furnish it so I am planning to save money by recycling all furniture!!

Unknown said...

Hi there, Sue! Your post is definitely helpful to would-be business owners who are planning to start their own business. I remember when I was just starting my business; it was a rough road to hoe. I started from scratch, from marketing my own creations to finding a shipping company to deliver them.

Cameron said...

Amazing tips, Sue! And if I may add, if you want to get into the furniture business, don’t forget to ask yourself if it’s really what you want. Sometimes, we may think that we’re into something, but in reality, it’s really not what can make us content.


Alisa Connely said...

Thanks for the tips! I'm just starting out as well! I will keep checking for more advice!!

Mando said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
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Unknown said...

Hey from Debbie Patten in Georgia. Thanks so much for the tips. We all need to help each other with ideas. My Facebook called Alabaster Box Creations. I also have pages on with the same name. I have 2 more etsy stores attached to this pg. Keywords are most important when listing. Research how sellers pages are done for ideas.
Many blessings to all of you addicted shabby chic, repurposing, folks :0)

Unknown said...

Fantastic work guys I’m a die-heart fan of your web site.interior design

Unknown said...

Really good post, this will help me a lot in the future

Linda Jones said...

"Selling up-cycled furniture", what a nice post, thankyou!

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Unknown said...

Thanks for the tips! Looks like u wrote this several years ago. Any new tips or revision? I would like to start repurposing or up cycling furniture as a business.

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