Have you always loved to make things with your hands? Is all your spare time used up in art and crafty pursuits? If so, then maybe it’s time you turned a casual passion into a serious money making operation. The happiest people on the planet are those that get paid for doing something they consider fun. How cool would it be to count yourself among them?
Let’s assume you have an aptitude for crafts and all things arty. First of all you’ll need to decide upon an area to specialise. Whether it’s pottery, jewellery, card making, knitting or sewing that you excel at, first of all you need to do your market research. Before buying up any art and craft supplies you need to know what the market demands. Don’t waste time and money on creating products that will have no buyers. Focus on products that are not only good looking, but serve a purpose. Useful craft items will always win out over things that are merely decorative or ornamental.
The best way of checking out the market is to attend as many craft fairs and events that you can. Go to many different scale fairs, small events that take place in village halls as well as grand extravaganzas in national exhibition centres. This way you will get a feel for the type of crafts on the market, the level of quality and professionalism that is required as well as identifying any areas that are under-represented. Craft products are frequently niche items and if you are smart enough to spot a gap in the market, you could make some good money.
Take notice of the way similar crafts to yours are displayed for sale. What tempting and seductive tricks do the sellers employ to attract your attention? Take note and store away such information for use later on.
When the market research has given you a firm idea of the demand, it is time to develop your designs. Find art and craft supplies online because this way you are able to access greater choice, quick and easy delivery and the best prices.
When designing your crafts, consider how they will be packaged. Selling over the counter at craft fairs is different from online retail of your goods. Delicate and fragile crafts will require suitable packaging and heavier items will incur higher transport costs – all aspects of the business that need to be factored in to your plans.
Think about how your crafts might stand out in the crowd. Can they be personalised and made bespoke for extra special gifts? Is there a particular unique technique, style or colour you could use that nobody else in the field is doing? Can you sign your work with a distinctive mark? Are limited editions a possibility? All these angles applied to your product are ways of making them a little special compared to the competition. Always keep an eye on promoting the unique selling point of your crafts – namely that it is not mass-produced, it is hand made.
To successfully sell your craft products you need to be on duty at all times. Have a professional business card printed so that whenever you meet people, you can network. Tell them about your crafts, what they are, who they are targeted at and why they are so wonderful. You are the number one PR person for your craft hobby business and as such you should always have on your person contact details and either photographs (on your phone will do) or actual samples of your crafts to display. Having an obsessive, evangelical approach to selling your arts and crafts items is a sure-fire way of increasing your chances of success.
One of the biggest players in selling crafts is online giant Etsy.com. This site is especially developed to help take care of an awful lot of the hard work that comes with selling your own creations. From helping out with sales transactions, offering guidance and advice and providing exposure for your products across a broad web-wide spectrum, Etsy should feature top of your to-do list once you are happy you have a great product to sell.
Making cash with crafts is a satisfying and enjoyable way of boosting your income. Who knows, if you approach it correctly and have a wonderful product to sell, you could even give up your day job and go crafty full time. Doesn’t that sound like a good life?