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hang tags, price stickers, price lists and labels

updated thu 25 apr 02


Janet Kaiser on thu 25 apr 02

Permanent or temporary stickers? It depends on your situation and how
mean your clients are likely to be! Yes, truly... It is something to
take into consideration! Price stickers have been known to strangely
transmutate from cheaper items to more expensive ones. Strangely
enough, it is never vice versa. They then are taken to the youngest,
most naive looking member of staff to wrap and complete the
transaction. Or if it is the maker/owner a very animated conversation
is first struck up and then the item is handed over... The attention
has been sufficiently distracted and once one is in wrap-and-pack mode
whilst talking... Well, you get the idea? The penny may drop after the
client has left, but by then it is too late... BTW this is why those
stickers which are in sections were invented. Very difficult, in fact
neigh on impossible to take them off and re-stick to another item.

Stickers are fine for any shop-like or craft fair situation,
especially where there are different members of staff, lots of
different stock or what is apparently the same stock at different
prices. I know potters who price each mug individually according to
how well it has turned out... That is a nightmare scenario for nicely
printed "price lists".

But the price list is an option I have not seen anyone mention... Once
again depending on what you sell and where, but a printed A4, A5 or A6
sheet with price of individual cup & saucer, plate, bowl, teapot, jug,
etc. and the price, put in one of those clear PVC stands looks very
professional and "official". That is the way they do it in top stores
and the average customer will feel comfortable with it. You can go to
town with additional information and fancy "headers". Or for potters
making different series of work, it is easy to group it into
categories like "the teal range", "special mother-in-law blue series"
and "springtime special" with the matching price-list.

Here in a gallery situation we deplore stickers! They are not
professional or "gallery standard". If they are on any items we
receive, they are removed immediately. The worst are those pots which
have been on exhibition elsewhere and are a different price, reference
number, etc. Very confusing for customers.

I print self adhesive labels with all the pertinent information, thus:

Item or Title
Name of Artist/Maker
Reference No. (code of artist's name + number as it appears in the

Does not matter if it is a 500 or a 5 pot... All the same. The label
is stuck onto 3 mm foamboard cut to size. All the same. Paintings have
the same labels, stuck nice and neatly to the wall with Bluetack...
Red spots can be stuck on quickly and discretely at private views...

Yes, it is a fiddle and time-consuming, but the advantage at the end
of the working day, is that the labels are in a box and if I forget to
write a sale down in the day book, Eckhard can check where the
unaccounted money has come from. This system only works, because
either Eckhard or I attend to all sales and we can check that there
has been no jiggery-pokery going on or a simple mistake made. We also
know each and every item on exhibition.

Yes, I have been conned... The scenario above of distracting chat...
Wrapped a five-sconce candelabrum. "chat-chat-chat" checked the label
"chat-chat-chat" Yes, right item -candelabrum- right maker... "do you
take credit cards?" "Yes, certainly" key in the details, now, check
the signature... Authorisation... Yes, OK. "Thank you. Enjoy your
purchase... Goodbye." It was only at the end of the day, Eckhard saw
the five-sconce was gone but the three-sconce ticket was in the box...
It was a 15 price difference. Not the end of the world, but we lost
money on that particular sale. Stupid of me, but there you go...

At the end of the day, the more up-market the situation and the item
being sold, the more "classy" the pricing mechanism must be... We are
not up to those tiny little embossed gold stand-up tags you see in the
windows of jewellers and Ritzy galleries you can only enter "by
appointment", but then our prices are not multiply zeroes...

Janet Kaiser
The Chapel of Art / Capel Celfyddyd
Home of The International Potters' Path
8 Marine Crescent : Criccieth : GB-Wales