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6 Ways to Make Money from your Crochet
Your Crochet Stash...
If you are anything like most crafting enthusiast eventually you end up with an inventory of finished goods and supplies that you just can’t make use of.
You can give only so many hand crocheted gifts for birthdays and Christmas. At some point a hobbyist will turn their mind to selling some of their work. Even if it is only to earn income for more yarn and materials!
Making Money From Your Crochet
Making money from your hobby can be a challenge – and crochet is no exception. Traditionally the difficulty is being paid for the “work” you put into making your handmade items, let alone recovering the cost of materials.
With the recent resurgence in the popularity of handmade items, however, the value placed on handmade items has increased. In addition to their popularity there are more and more markets opening up to sell your handmade items.
If you are anything like most crafting enthusiast eventually you end up with an inventory of finished goods and supplies that you just can’t make use of. You can give only so many hand crocheted gifts for birthdays and Christmas. At some point a hobbyist will turn their mind to selling some of their work. Even if it is only to earn income for more yarn and materials!
If this is your goal, you won’t be too concerned about things like hourly rates and overheads, but if you want to make crochet hobby your business you should be thinking about these things from the outset. But pricing your crochet items is the topic for another day.
Thanks to the internet making money out of your crochet hobby (or fledgling business) is easier than it was in decades gone by. Here are just 5 ways you can turn your hobby into a side business. Each method has its own benefits and drawbacks which will also be discussed.
1. Selling Your Finished Crochet Items
The most direct way to earn money from your handmade crochet items is to sell the finished product. Selling online gives you a quick method of getting your items up for sale. There are a host of websites that will allow you to create and account and start selling your items very quickly.
Sell Your Crochet on Etsy
Selling Your Crochet Online
The internet has made making money from your crochet very possible. At one stage you needed to set up your own website (with all that entails – hosting, web design, and taking payments) but sites such as Etsy, undeniably the most well known, have now made it possible for anyone to set up shop and sell their arts and crafts online.
Etsy and its competitors make it very quick and easy to set up a shop. You can be set up within a day. Getting your store noticed is your challenge online. Left on its own, you will sell on Etsy – even without marketing – my own efforts are proof of that. But if you are looking to make your hobby a business you will need to treat it as such. Not too many business owners leave their business to fend for itself…
Setting up an Etsy account is very straightforward. There are no fees for setting up a shop but there are fees for listing your items. At the time of writing the fee for adding an item into your Etsy shop is $0.20. A listing is current for 120 days after which time it expires and you need to pay another $0.20 to relist your item.
If your item sells, a percentage of the sale goes to Etsy – 3.5%. Then there are additional fees for taking payments via PayPal. There is a $0.30 flat fee and 2.9% of the total sales amount. This means you have about flat fees of $0.50 and a percentage fee of 6.9% to accommodate in your pricing model.
Then there’s shipping costs to consider.
Sell your Crochet Online or Markets?
If you are just getting started selling your crochet online may be the way to go until you build up enough stock for a market stall!
Once you have inventory you can offer all those goodies advertised online for sale at your market stalls. It doesn't matter how you sell it - just that you do!
Selling your Crochet at Markets and in Stores
Unlike, selling your handmade crochet items online, getting your crochet goods into a store or for sale at a local market takes more time. This is becoming easier as more and more stores crop up that sell handmade items on a consignment basis. Think of the Etsy model in a bricks and mortar store. The shop owner rents you space in their store (as small as a basket) and then take a percentage of any sales.
Getting your stock into such a store is not necessarily easy. The shop owner will have an eye for what sells and if they already have a ready stock of crochet items you may have to wait until they need more crochet goods.
Another option is to set up a stall at a local handmade market. Markets generally run infrequently, say monthly or quarterly, and you will need to be present to sell your goods. There is generally a fee for setting up a stall and you need to match your products with the type of market you sell at. Selling your crochet scarves at a Farmers market may prove fruitless.
A crochet heart tutorial and pattern
2. Make Money Teaching Crochet
The popularity of handmade crafts means that there are many people looking to learn how to crochet (or knit). Classes for beginner crocheters are popping up everywhere. If you have been crocheting for a while and have a gift for teaching you could consider running a crochet course.
Again, you could run face to face courses where you lead a group of people in person, or the internet again provides options. You can create a video crocheting course and put it up on YouTube. To make money out of this course you will need to monetize the videos themselves with Google Adsense (advertising).
You could also sell the course via digital download. The magic thing about digital training is that you produce the content once and you can sell the course over and over again.
Write about your crochet hobby or business
Write tutorials, publish some of your patterns or just tell us why you love crochet!
3. Write About Crochet
Following on from the point above you could also produce written crochet training materials. For that matter, you could write about any part of your crochet or crochet business and make money from that writing.
You can monetize your writing by producing eBooks. Amazon offers wonderful opportunities for self publishing your eBooks on the Kindle. You can also publish to other eBook reader platforms by using Smashwords.
Revenue share writing sites
Another option is to use one of the many online revenue share writing platforms that allow you to publish articles. These sites are called revenue share sites because they share the advertising revenue generated from those articles with the author. Hubpages (this site) is one such site.
4. Blogging or setting up a website
Setting up your own blog is another way to write about crocheting for the purpose of making money. If you plan to create a business around your crochet hobby you will likely find yourself needing a blog at some stage. Your blog can be monetized by selling ad space on your website. There are many options for doing this without having to negotiate directly with advertisers. Google Adsense, Infolinks and Chitika are all popular ad networks that make it easy to earn advertising revenue on your blog or website.
Of course there are other options also. You could sell crochet materials, patterns and books through an affiliate program such as Amazon. You should also have links to your online stores on your blog or website to send purchasers to where they can buy your crochet items.
You can start with a free blog hosted on Blogger or create your own self hosted site on Wordpress. Your blog can be monetized by adding advertising and links to your online stores. Your blog is essentially a marketing tool for your business.
Crochet equipment for your Crochet Business
Everything you need to get started with your own crochet business - Crochet hooks in different sizes, yarn needles, stitch markers and more! Oh and you'll need some yarn as well...
5. Selling Crafting Supplies
Crocheters need crochet supplies. Getting started with crochet is relatively simple. You need a crochet hook and some yarn. Anyone that takes to crocheting at all soon realizes that one hook and a ball of yarn isn’t going to cut it. There are more hooks to buy, yarn obsessions can become expensive and then there is all the equipment to help you make the most of your crochet – baskets for organizing your supplies, beads and buttons to embellish your work and needles to finish off and weave in ends. The more you crochet the more supplies you seem to need.
This fact alone can spur crocheters to sell their handiwork; simply to fund the purchase of additional supplies. Well priced supplies are always in demand and many crafters also sell crafting supplies on sites such as Etsy or eBay to supplement their crochet business income. The stock may be left over’s from finished projects or kits designed to help others get started.
How about you?
Have you ever made money from your crochet hobby?
6. Selling Crochet Patterns
If you enjoy the design process of crochet and enjoy adapting and creating your own crochet designs perhaps you could document and sell your crochet designs in the form of patterns. Patterns are generally sold for a fraction of the price of the finished item. But the pattern can be sold over and over again.
Crochet patterns that are not already available for free on the internet are usually unique or complex or both. For this reason you should enjoy the design process if you want to make this your business model. A lot of time is put in up front in developing a good, easy to reproduce pattern.
Another plus is that by the time you have perfected a pattern and documented it, you likely have quite a range of finished items that you can also sell!
How do you make money from your crochet?
How do you make money out of your crochet?
By the time you turn your crochet hobby into a business you will likely have tested a number of these income streams. Which you enjoy most and works best for you will not be what works best for the next person. Your target market may influence how and where you sell your crochet products.
There is one thing for certain though. If you want to make money out of your crochet hobby you need to get your work out there. Whether its patterns, articles about crochet, or finished crochet products get your work in front of people. There is no making money out of your crochet if it’s tucked away in your craft studio.