Selling Your Artwork at Your Garage Sale

For an artist, getting exposure for your work can be the toughest part about making any money off what you love to do. Selling your artwork at your garage sale isn't going to be a "fast cash now" scheme by any means, but it will put your name and your style out there for people to peruse. Although many garage sale shoppers are truly bargain bin hunters and can't afford artwork in their homes, some do it for the thrill of the hunt and may actually appreciate art enough to purchase from you. Keep these tips in mind if you decide to try and put yourself out there on garage sale weekend.

Arranging your artwork in a garage sale.

Keep garage sale prices in mind. Bargain hunters are not going to be able to pay extravagant fees, for your secondhand merchandise or for the artwork you're selling. That means that you need to turn your head away from gallery prices and think about the kind of money you would be able and willing to dish out if you were shopping at garage sales out of necessity (or even because you wanted to). Don't price your art so high that shoppers take one look at it and walk away; you want them to at least peruse what you've made!

Look at this more as an opportunity to put your name and work out there than a business move. As such, you probably don't want to sell any of your masterpieces or favorite works, just because you'll end up regretting having sold them at a low price. You may have some "cast-off" pieces -- the less-inspired ones, and art that didn't come out quite how you'd envisioned it -- and you could turn a small profit on these that you wouldn't be able to get in a gallery or art show setting.

Advertise your art on your signs and in your ads. If your style is right, you may even make your signs artistic themselves! Even if you don't do that, you'll want to at least mention -- on both your signs and your online/newspaper advertisements -- that a local artist will be selling his or her art at the garage sale; that way, people will come prepared and won't overlook your art as more secondhand stuff that you're selling.

If your art is fragile, take precautions. Maybe you blow glass in your spare time and want to sell some of your less polished pieces. Don't just send someone home with their purchase in a plastic bag! Have some newspaper or bubble wrap handy for fragile art, and be willing to give it away with each purchase.

Feel free to mention your artwork on your advertisements that appear on our free garage sale listing site!




Comments (13) -

Mary Lisa Weaver
Mary Lisa Weaver
2/16/2013 5:28:55 AM #

I've tried selling my cross stitch picture about a mickey mouse in a flea market once. It wasn't my own sale/market but it was organized by a friend of mine. I had mixed emotions about having my first artwork sold. I was really nervous and excited at the same time because I had no idea if it would be sold or not and unfortunately, no one bought it. It was a learning experience for me to improve next time like my captions or signs to attract potential buyers. Got to do a better job next time

Deborah Meyer
Deborah Meyer
2/16/2013 5:40:50 AM #

Its a big risk if you're selling a painting of yours especially if its your first time. Onlookers could damage your artwork during the event and would greatly depreciate its value. Your hard work would translate into nothing but if  luck is on your side, it could be an instant success and you start to make a name for yourself. Its just rolling the dice and hope the the gods may be in your favor

William Howard
William Howard
2/17/2013 2:24:21 AM #

If you want to safeguard your own masterpiece, taking pictures is an alternative. You can have catalogs that show your collection and only display those which are not that expensive. If they want to inquire more about the high end pieces, you could escort them to another location with better controlled environment so they can see first hand.

Nicole Fields
Nicole Fields
2/17/2013 2:40:25 AM #

You want to have an ideal environment to display your art especially paintings to preserve their integrity. Your paint and the materials could erode and degrade overtime. Careful handling should be observed at all times.

Beth
Beth
2/18/2013 11:40:31 AM #

Getting an appropriate set-up which allows proper flow through the sale is a must. You wouldn't want your costumers bumping your stands/displays and you'll have to rearrange them frequently. That certainly eats away your time you could spend socializing with your guests and giving them your inspirations and insights about your paintings or works of art.

Enrique Bates
Enrique Bates
2/21/2013 1:17:39 AM #

I enjoy going to art galleries. I don't mean those formal art galleries where you need to wear a coat and a tie. I don't like those formal events because I feel that it's just too tight. I prefer these art galleries on the street because they have a lot of stories to tell. Its more than the painting or drawing, I want to know more about the story behind it. You can see raw talent out there waiting to be discovered because they have not been given the opportunity.

Tracey Norris
Tracey Norris
2/21/2013 1:39:45 AM #

I agree with you Enrique.
There's so much to tell behind those art. All the pain, suffering, frustrations of being out there and not having a good life translates to their art. It's full of mixed emotions and it's their own way to express themselves. Ever felt that you needed to express yourself but you can't find a way to do so? You feel like shouting but you know no one would understand and hear you...

Willard Bosh
Willard Bosh
2/21/2013 1:48:24 AM #

Hi everyone, I'm a frustrated artist. I love drawing but drawing does not love me. Even when I was a kid, I tried copying those cartoons/anime that I love like my favorites - Ghost Fighter and Dragon Ball Z. I practiced drawing the characters but I just couldn't even make a decent comparison. Once, I really wanted to draw - Vincent , a guy from ghost fighter with the dragon power. I was so frustrated that I let my father draw him instead. I was shocked that he was able to draw Vincent while he was on our comfort room because I was always bugging him to draw vincent few hours before. That was one of the most special thing I remember about my dad.

Marion Graves
Marion Graves
2/21/2013 2:06:20 AM #

Spend money from your pocket for your advertising. You could announce your sale in the  newspapers or tabloids. A new trend would be using electronic marketing such as billboards where people will notice it. You will want a place where its easily visible and accessible to most people.

Isaac Brewer
Isaac Brewer
2/21/2013 2:07:19 AM #

Spend money from your pocket for your advertising. You could announce your sale in the  newspapers or tabloids. A new trend would be using electronic marketing such as billboards where people will notice it. You will want a place where its easily visible and accessible to most people.

Josh Hayes
Josh Hayes
2/24/2013 9:11:19 AM #

Display your valuable art work in stands or tables with sliding glass to avoid damage on these precious arts. You can take them out if a shopper is serious in acquiring your work of art but for those who are just passing by to look around, it can just be a great addition in your display. You need to set your rules and regulations to preserve the integrity of your works, you may allow only a certain number of individuals to enter the shop and you may conduct a formal tour for each batch, just like in museums. When they all have been familiar with the place, you can now let them roam around and revisit pieces which intrigued them.

Jamey Cruise
Jamey Cruise
2/24/2013 9:17:38 AM #

Don't set your expectations too high. Chances are, your artworks are not that good yet because they can't still be displayed in an art exhibit so don't price them too high. For your "not so great works," you can price them for the materials you used a little bit profit is enough. Don't be discouraged if your costumers aren't buying any of your works. Each of us have our own taste and preference and takes on art. Some of us can see it as boring but some can see beyond the picture and share the same emotion and relate with the picture. Just remember this "Behind every successful man, are a lot unsuccessful moments."

Andrean Ray Grey
Andrean Ray Grey
3/9/2013 1:55:59 AM #

It would be a double purpose garage sale for that matter. You get to sell garage item while you get to advertise your own masterpiece in an instant. People then will try to look around and of course, with  the art masterpiece of yours, you'll get enough attention to the people coming around. But also bear in mind that what you sell is worth also with the price. Nobody will want to spend a hundred bucks on a hundred piece of crap.

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