This post has taken me hours to write – I agonize over this sort of thing. We have to raise our prices. My wool, my fabric, EVERYTHING has gone up in cost so much, add to that the weak dollar situation, Paypal fees and general overhead – it’s all adding up very quickly. I think it’s like this everywhere – John and I went out for dinner at a nice place , not crazy nice – just like an upscale pub place and it cost us $110! 2 drinks each, an appetizer, a burger and a salad! Anyhow, it’s got to be done or else there will be no Bamboletta dolls – this is the solemn news delivered to me by the accountant. I’ve been able to go on the way I have because we have John’s income to pay the mortgage and we live very modestly, and I really never think about it – as long as the wool, my gals and rent gets paid I’m happy. But I have to start thinking about my family and all of this down the road. I remember reading in ‘Craft Inc.’ an interview that the author did with a crafter that ‘made it’ … well, it turns out that she would be making more income by just doing it herself like she had been years ago. This always stuck with me. I just don’t think it’s an option for Bamboletta to go back to 5 dolls a week 😉
So, as of March 1st our prices will go up on most items. Our base 15″ doll price will be $230 to $250 (dreds, fairy bits, more outfit pieces) .. most dolls will be somewhere in between. My Little Buddies will be $120 to $125 – depending on hair/outfit. Blanket Dolls will be $32. Clothing and pocket dolls will be the same. I know I’ve said this before but we ARE getting Little Buddy production up – it’s been a domino effect of illness and missing materials that have really dampened the numbers this past few months – sorry about that. It’s really important for me to get more LB’s out there – they are more affordable for more families and just so wee and cute!
Rachel, Shauna, Jennie and Sarah getting started on stuffing. It takes them about 6 hours to get all the week’s stuffing done. We give our sewing mama’s stuffed bodies that they assemble and put hair on. The dolls then come back for me to ‘face’ and us to prepare for Friday uploads.
It may seem like a crazy amount to pay for a doll and I totally get that. Each doll takes about 12 hours of work (with a sweater) and the materials we use are only the best we can find (therefore pretty expensive). Making this many dolls requires a LOT of ladies to keep our standards as high as they are – there are 30 women now sewing and stuffing and dressing and packing to create the 60 or so dolls each week and all the clothing – that is a pretty high lady to doll ratio. Clemens, my fantastic business guy, had us all in the shop work on a mission statement for Bamboletta that I think just about sums everything up..
‘Bamboletta creates outstanding dolls and doll accessories handcrafted with skill, care and a lot of love. At Bamboletta we strive to deliver an amazing customer experience. We feel honored to be making dolls and that we are playing a role in the childhood of kids around the world. Our dolls protect childhood and do not propel little ones into adulthood. Bamboletta is committed to provide a supportive, ethical, fulfilling work environment for women to work in.’
I’m not trying to sell the dolls here, but a Bamboletta is probably one of the few toys that your child will pass along to their child. It’s a doll you know was made by moms here locally and made with sustainable and safe materials. It’s a doll that is backed up 100% and if anything goes wrong – you know we are an email away and will do our hardest to make things right .. it’s just how we roll here.
The ‘studio’ gals and Clemens (myself and Thamar are missing). My photos of all the sewing mama’s are on my tea drenched Macbook currently at Futureshop – they are taking the files out. Props to my home sewers ,they tirelessly work from home and really are an amazing bunch.
Phew – how is that for a long, drawn out post? I just really wanted you gals to know exactly what is happening and why. I am so thankful to be in a postion to see Bamboletta grow and expand as it has and it’s all because of YOU gals (and guys) out there. The demand for our dolls is flattering to say the least and we just want to keep making the best dolls we possibly can for your children (and yourselves – you doll loving mama’s!). It seems only a few short years ago that I was in my dining room getting ready for my next Farmer’s Market. Thank you all for your continued business!
Christina and the rest of the ladies at Bamboletta