This is a picture of the bag in the making right now. It will be another bubble smocked bag and as you see, it is a fairly complicated process involving seven needles at any given time.
This is the front. It will take about a week to smock the front and then we will still have to make the bag it self.
Last week we got a very friendly convo by the listing of an other smocked bag asking us if we could make that kind of bags for $10. The lady indicated that in that case she might buy five or more.
It is not every day that you get such overwhelming offers, but I had to tell her to try her luck by our colleagues in the Far East.
What brings me by the problem- or shall I call it challenge?- of our competitors in the Far East.
The market for bags is even more difficult than the market for custom jewelry. While the rich and beautiful choose to spend thousands to buy a brand bag, the regular customer wants them cheap.
And, lets be honest, at the Far East, very good bags are being made, often of leather and with a gazillion zippers and other details well above of what we can offer for that price. In fact, the thousands dollars brand bags are also made in the Far East!
I don't resent the far eastern sellers on Etsy, as long as they are not copying others and as long as their product is well made. Cheap labour does not mean bad labour per se and that people also have to eat and make a living like the rest of us. I think that every one of us buys once in a while from the Far East when is convenient, so let's not cry when we are the seller.
The question remains, how to compete? Is there a market for painstakingly made bags that necessarily cost a bit more? Creating a niche for yourself is easier said than done!
What are your ideas and opinions in the matter? Let us know!