February 16, 2012
When you hear the word “wholesale”, does it make you think of a production line creating hundreds of the same item, over and over again? Perhaps in the historical sense, but not with handmade, and not here. Handmade items are different. By definition, they are unique, some are OOAK (one-of-a-kind). This means precisely that…one…of…a…kind. Do these items have a place in a boutique? Absolutely! Here is a quote from the Glancer magazine about a local brick-and-mortar boutique “Many of the pieces in the store are one-of-a-kind because they are handpicked from independent artists or designed by (the owner) herself.”
The article also touts how they sell products designed and crafted by local and national artists. This exclusivity is a selling point. It makes the consumer feel she is getting something special…and she is. Made with love by someone’s hands. It portrays the boutique as a place that carefully selects their items, not as one simply placing large orders with precarious wholesale websites sourcing products from overseas.
If you create OOAK items, boutiques can be for you. Many are willing to place orders for a variety of styles…and find consumers crave OOAK pieces. Afterall, the boutique is unique in itself…it is not a big box store. It caters to a particular clientele. If their customers wanted the same necklace every Sue, Barb, and Sally were wearing…they would be shopping elsewhere.