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anyone got a wholesale account, and work...


Wick'n'Wax
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out of their kitchen?

After christmas (after craft fair), I'm going to make a concerted effort to get at least one wholesale account.

Whilst being excited at the prospect, I'm worried sick about not having the room to pour in greater volume.

I have approx 2foot of worktop in my kitchen that has my candle 'stuff' that I'm using at that time. I can nick another small part for items waiting to pack.

Is this possible? anyone else use their kitchen?

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With wholesale, if a company ordered 300 pink pillar candles in a particular scent, they want ALL the candles to be the exact same colour. The only way this is possible is to have the ability to melt say 40lbs of wax all at once, dye it the correct shade and pour all the candles at the same time, otherwise there are distinct differences in the colour.

300 candles is a relatively small wholesale order, so have a look at your space and see if

a) can you put 300 moulds into it and leave them there for 24 hours without other people needing to use the space

B) can you melt enough wax to fill said moulds all at once.

c) do you have the money to buy 300 moulds, and the wick, FO, wax u need, plus larger melting pots.

d) do you have shelving to hold 300 moulds, wicks, fo etc when not in use

Before you even worry about if you have enough space, you need to work out is whether you have enough money to buy in large enough bulk to offer realistic wholesale prices. Most customers who buy from you wholesale want to double what they paid, so if they sell your candle for £4.00 they want to buy it for £2.00 INCLUDING delivery. So you would have to charge 1.50 for each candle plus delivery and packaging costs (boxes, bubble and peanuts don't come free) and this is around 50p per candle in total - so there's your £2.

Then decide how much is your time worth per candle? Let's say you want to earn 50p per candle on some wholesale candle tins, which is a very low amount - you would have to produce 10 candles in an hour to make £5 profit. Sounds simple...but this means you need to melt the wax, wick the tins, colour and scent the wax, pour the candles, have them fully set, heat-gunned, packaged and boxed in 1 hour - to do 10 candles in 1 hour is pushing it when you have no space to work in.

So for a £4 candle, you need to charge £1.50 each plus p&p. 50p of this is your profit, which leaves you £1 for materials. If you can create that candle for £1 or less, which includes the cost of the wax, wick, fo, dye, cellophane, safety label, ink for your printer etc then you can wholesale, but being in the UK, it's going to be hard to make a candle for less than £1 if you can't buy wax by the pallet and fragrance oil by the kilo.

If you want to increase your production which will increase your profits per hour, then you need much more space than 2ft of work surface. It's not just the actual pouring area you need to consider, it is the storage space you need for all the extra stock and equipment you need to hold - plus you need the money to actually buy all of that extra equipment up front.

If i'd have known then what I found out the hard way, I would have waited before I offered wholesale, as it's extremely hard work for very little payback. Offering wholesale has sucked thousands of pounds out of my business, simply because in order to offer it, I have to buy in WAY more stock than I need - for a 300 candle order I have to buy in enough wax to make 1,000 candles, just so I can get the wax at a price low enough for me to make a small profit on wholesale prices.

Hope this helps

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If you have everything else worked out and space is all you are worried about, why not invest in a couple of the folding tables at Wal-Mart. When I first started pouring, I worked out of my kitchen and boy was it a mess, constantly. I couldn't stand to look at it.

But then dh got the bright idea to buy a couple of the 6 foot banquet tables and set them up in a extra room we weren't using at the time(now the kiddo's bedroom). I could set up my melters in the kitchen and my jars on the tables in the extra room. It gave me plenty of extra room.

If you haven't already, I would take a real close look at your cost before trying to get a wholesale account. I had a lady inquire yesterday about putting some of my candles in her flower shop. After calculating my cost, since everything has gone up so much in the last year, I just can't afford to do it right now. If I gave her wholesale cost, she would make more on my candles than I do, not happening.

I don't do enough business at this time to buy my jars by the pallet, my largest expense, and I don't live close enough to a jar supplier to make it cost effective to drive and pick them up. So for now, I'll stick to craft fairs and door to door selling.

If you should choose to do it, I hope all goes well for you.

Jennifer

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thanks for the input.

We've actually some more space in the kitchen, but nothing in there as yet, I suppose a drop leaf table would be a benefit.

I have space for all my stock at the moment, although getting through the hallway is becoming a problem lolol.

We are actually selling our house and one I have my eye on has a spare room off the kitchen, perfect for a candle room ;) if only.

If it were say 50 jars at a time, that I could probably manage, but anymore and I may be stuck (without a table that is).

The cost isn't worrying me so much as the moment, as the space.

Money wise, if I was to receive a large order, my bank manager has already said they have a facility in place, whereby I show him the order form and they forward the money to me, and I pay back without interest within 90days. Fine if the nett terms are 90days

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there's some really good folding tables on ebay, about 45 quid. perfect to take to craft fairs also. Pasting tables collapse too easily (tell me how I know that) but these white ones are good. I don't know the seller but if you're looking it has pictures of the table with women sitting on top to show of the strength. They have metal legs, 8ft long with white laminate top, and fold in half with a carry handle.

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If only i had somekind of work/pour room. I for right now am at the mercy of my kitchen. I use to have a kitchen table lol. I think i spend most of my time in the kitchen cooking,cleaning,pouring,soaping, uhh when will it ever end lol.

Im trying to kick my husband from the basement, he makes bird houses ect. down there but he has a full time job and im a stay at home mom, who works from home also, i think i need it more then him, but he wont budge:sad2:

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hey yvette,

i feel for you i wanted to do this too but it takes up alot of tme as well as money so i have found the next best thing( for me anyhows) theres a courtyard near to me which is full of small units for growing businesses such as ladys fashion photo studio small garden centre cafe and others it gets real busy in winter and the owner of the pottery and candle shop has agreed to give me a space of however many shelves i could fill, probably start with three or four and increase nr to xmas, where i display my candles and she just takes a small portion of sales as her fee. The best bit is i can put in the candles im doing at the time and run the lines i want so i dont have to order in special items, and only do about 6 of each @ a time rather than 12 or 24's! So i can have more fun , less stress and still have a presence in a shop the only down side is i get the money when its sold.

its another option though and if you can work well with the shop owner you can really build on it!!

Good luck with what you decide

chauntelle x :)

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