8 Tips for Pricing Your Commissioned Original Art for Minted

For customers seeking unique original art, photography, and design, we’ve launched Minted Commissioned Original Art (BETA), a new program that is limited to U.S. consumers and Minted artists during our initial beta period.

Minted believes in protecting the value of artists’ work and creating a marketplace that will help independent artists thrive. To prevent a pricing race to the bottom, we’ve set a minimum price of $75 per commission. Our independent community of artists create a variety of styles, mediums, formats, and with that comes varying prices. Artists set their own price for Commissioned Original Art (BETA) projects. Please keep in mind that artists keep 80% of the price quote and Minted retains 20%. Your price quotes must include shipping costs.

Pictured above: Lauren Rogoff is a Minted Artist who specializes in custom pet portraits. She posted this photo of herself on her Instagram, @wanderinglaur, during a Minted press event in New York in July 2016.

How Does Pricing Work in Commissioned Original Art?
Minted artists will set an estimated price or price range for various sizes (S-L) and complexities (Simple-Complex) of projects you will have available for commission. You will not set a final price for a project until you discuss the project with the client and agree on the scope. By this time, you’ll also know the estimated size/weight of the finished product and the shipping address, so you’ll be able to accurately estimate and account for the insured shipping costs. You may also need to include any sales tax in the price depending on the state where you live, and the location of the customer.

Based on the photo she received of her client’s French bulldogs above, Lauren Rogoff created this pet portrait.

What’s the Right Price for My Work?
If you’re looking for a one-size-fits-all formula for pricing commissioned work, you might not find one. But after interviewing several experienced commissioned artists, we’ve identified common threads for best practices. Here are eight tips to help you find your pricing sweet spot.

1. Do Your Research to Get a Ballpark Figure
When initially thinking about your price range for commissioned work, it’s helpful to get a sense of the market on other sites, especially for your particular style and medium. “You don’t want to charge $10 or $1,000 when your competitors are at $500,” says Lauren Rogoff, a Minted artist who specializes in animal and pet portraits. “Even if your work is distinct stylistically, it helps to know what customers are spending.”

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How to Ship Commissioned Original Art

When it comes to best practices for shipping Commissioned Original Art (BETA), we knew exactly who to contact for advice: Rich Baiardi. As Minted’s Vice President of Manufacturing Supply Chain, he’s an expert in shipping all of Minted’s assortment products in the safest way possible.

Before we dive into the Q&A with Rich, please keep in mind that during the beta period, we are limiting Commissioned Original Art to U.S. customers, so our tips are based on domestic shipping methods. Also remember that you must insure Commissioned Original Art and require the customer’s signature upon delivery. We highly recommend that you confirm the customer’s shipping address and message the tracking number to the customer once you’ve shipped the order.

How can I protect small unframed art, design, and photography?

Rich Baiardi: For a initial layer of protection, I recommend placing art in a plastic bag, which you can order at clearbags.com.

Then sandwich with cardboard chip mailers (.03 thickness) — one piece on each side.

If the art is small (anything up to 11’ x 14’), the best thing to do is ship in a flat mailer, which you can purchase from ULINE. The cardboard makes the packaging stiffer and helps to prevent damage if it’s bent during the shipping process.


Minted Real Wedding: Melanie and Dien in Glen Ellen, CA

After a surprise proposal in the Bahamas, Seattle-based couple Melanie and Dien held a colorful, whimsical wedding at the B.R. Cohn winery in Glen Ellen. They chose “Dahlia Bouquet” by Alethea and Ruth as their wedding invitation and the talented bride made the ceremony programs, menus, and table-number signs herself. Keep reading for more from their alfresco celebration (you have to see the fun poufs at the reception!).

BR Cohn Winery Wedding | Melanie & Dien

Bride and groom: Melanie Apuyan & Dien Nguyen
Occupations: Mortgage industry (Melanie) and software sales (Dien)
Based in: Seattle, Washington
Wedding date: August 14, 2015
Venue: B.R. Cohn, Glen Ellen, CA
Number of guests:  110
Minted wedding invitation: “Dahlia Bouquet” by Alethea and Ruth (in the “Sherbet” color palette)
Wedding planner: Sugar Rush Events
Florist: The Monkey Flower Group
Cake designer: Crisp Bake Shop
Photographer: Margaret Austin Photography

How did you and Dien meet?
Through a mutual friend.

Tell us about the proposal…
The proposal happened on a trip to the Bahamas. It came as complete surprise! And he picked the ring out all by himself, I love it.

How did you find your wedding venue?
We researched wedding venues online first, then took a trip out to Napa and Sonoma to visit sites in person.

Who made your wedding dress?  
Claire Pettibone

What was the wedding-dress shopping process like?
It was surprisingly easy—it was one of only four dresses I tried.

Click through for more from Melanie and Dien’s winery wedding


Inspire your space with Minted on Pinterest

UPDATE: Congratulations to our winner, Jen Sutton, who created a board full of dreamy color palettes and modern seaside décor we’d love for our own room makeover. Congratulations Jen!

Inspire your interior space with Minted and Sherwin-Williams.  To celebrate the launch of our new Art Styling Services, Minted has partnered with Sherwin-Williams to offer one lucky winner over $1K in prizes towards redecorating your home. Pick one room in your home to redecorate, design a beautifully mood board on Pinterest, and we’ll select one winner to receive $1000 in Minted credit + Styling Services and up to 5g’s of paint from Sherwin-Williams. CONTEST EXTENDED TO 8/10!

Get all the entry details after the jump…


DIY: Gender-Reveal Baby Shower Pins

Written by Kathleen Ballos of  Snowdrop & Co

Are you hosting a baby shower this summer? If the mama-to-be is planning on revealing the baby’s gender to guests at the party, then today’s project is the perfect way to add a fun game into the mix. Make a bunch of these pink and blue prize-ribbon pins and place them in a bowl by the party entrance. As guests arrive, have them pick a blue or pink pin, depending on what they think the baby will be. When the mom-to-be makes the big announcement, you can pass out small prizes to the guests who guessed correctly!

DIY Gender Reveal Pins on Julep DIY Gender Reveal Pins on Julep

Click through for full step-by-step instructions …


DIY: Ice-Cream Cone Garland

I’ve never met an ice-cream cone I didn’t like, even one made of paper. So, if you’re celebrating National Ice Cream Day this Sunday, you can whip up this whimsical garland in about 30 minutes flat with materials you probably have on hand.

ice cream cone garland
ice cream garland

Click through for the step-by-step instructions

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Austin Artists Cool Off Over Sangria and Laughs

In early July, Minted Artists met up in downtown Austin for a casual get-together over cocktails and snacks at Irene’s, a new bar and restaurant recommended by Austin artist Melanie Pavao. Artists took a break from the scorching Texas heat to bond over the local art scene, their experience with Minted, and their favorite creative websites and resources.

        Top row from left: Melissa Reese, Heidi Miller Lowell, and Amanda Guerassio.
Bottom row from left: Melanie PavaoCarol SchiraldiSarah Luna, Kathy Van Torne, and Christina Loff.

“I especially appreciate the intimate, human connection that we all experienced through meeting each other in person — it has literally made my Minted world come alive,” Sarah Luna told us after the meetup. Austin artists are already making plans to hang out again.

Our very nice waiter from Irene’s helping us jump-start Heidi’s car, with a very happy Heidi.

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Ice-Cream Party Must-Haves

I don’t usually celebrate the random, wacky holidays (let’s face it—most of ’em seem made up!) but there’s one I cannot pass up: National Ice Cream Day. This Sunday, July 17, is a day dedicated to beloved summertime staple, so why not whip up an ice-cream party package for friends? Here’s what I’m including in mine, along with a note that says, of course, “Just add ice cream!”

ice cream party ice cream party ideas

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DIY: Colorful Utensil Wraps

Written by Sara Albers and Melissa Fenlon of  Alice & Lois

Add a bright pop of color to your summer picnics with these DIY utensil wraps. All you need is your favorite patterned paper—scrapbook paper, wrapping paper, card stock, you name it!—to make these cute little flatware envelopes. Here’s how we did it…

DIY Paper Utensil Envelope | alice & lois for minted
DIY Paper Utensil Envelope | alice & lois for minted

Click through for the simple step-by-step instructions…

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DIY: Paper Coaster Garland

Written by Kathleen Ballos of  Snowdrop & Co

Recently I’ve been inspired by vintage paper coasters—there are so many gorgeous designs, especially some of the floral-patterned ones. After browsing for what must have been ages, I finally picked out a few sets to use for this DIY garland. Some of the coasters can get pricey, so I mixed in some plain and patterned card stock circles cut to match. This is such a simple project to do, but doesn’t it make a big impact? I can’t get over how striking the coasters are!

DIY Paper Coaster Garland | Julep DIY Paper Coaster Garland | Julep

Click through for full instructions … 

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