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How To Make Money With Crafts

Updated on June 14, 2015
linfcor profile image

Professional scrapbook artist, paper crafter, and author, I have taught people how to make family memories into legacies for 20 years.

Can You Make Your Crafts Profitable?

There is an opportunity for you to turn your skill and talents into profit and money both online and offline. You can make money with crafts that you create in your home or studio. You can make a part time or full time income if you approach your skills and use them to your best advantage.

Do you have a special craft that you think could be a profitable part time or full time business? Are you looking to make some extra money while being at home with your family?

The internet is alive with people who have done just that and have been very successful. You can develop your business as time goes along or dig into it full time. The most important thing is that once you make the decision to take the plunge, that you take steps to make yourself profitable.Till you mentally turn the corner from hobby to business, you will not succeed.
If you are serious about making money, you must treat your craft as a business, not a hobby

Start by getting free resources before you start creating your business. The Small Business Administration is a good place to start. Taking charge of your business before getting started will make you more successful

The Difference Between A Hobby Business And A Craft Business

Do you make crafts for family members and friends? Have you sold a few items and have considered doing business in your craft? There is a huge difference between someone who is dabbling in crafts and someone who is looking to make real money at crafts, either part time or full time. There are considerations in time and money to be made. Having said that, the internet is ripe with opportunity for crafters to turn thier passions into profits. With as little as one or two items, you can start making money with your crafts. The web is full of opportunity, if you work at it. The decision to at least try is up to you.

Craft Sellers Tips And Ideas

  • Be prepared for seasonal rushes ! Set a calendar and your goals so that you have inventory for the seasonal times of selling. Fall through Christmas would be a huge selling time. People are looking for special gifts for the holidays. But don't discount Valentines Day, Easter, Halloween, Fourth of July. Watch for specifics on local events and set your calendar and goals accordingly
  • Did you know that pricing your crafts under a dollar point will actually sell more products? For example, if you sell items at $9.99 rather than selling them at $10, you will actually sell more!

Step One-Define Your Business

A business plan is neccessary for any business, so before you get out there, define what it is your business is about. What is your product? Who will you sell it to? How much time a day and how many days a week will you devote to your business? How much money do you have to devote to your business ? What are the goals for your business and when do you want to meet these goals? These are all things that you must do before you take on the world !

How to set up a craft business plan.

Legal structure for a craft business

Step Two -Define Your Products

Ready to focus on your craft product? Make a list of the product or products you are going to sell. Define the cost of the materials you will need for each project and double it for your price point. Look on the internet at comparable projects and determine if your price is fair and reasonable. While you are looking at comparable projects, also consider quality. Does your project meet the quality of comparable projects. Search on Goggle. Just search for the specific item that you are planning to market.

Naming/ Branding Your Business

Outside of deciding what crafts you are going to market, it's important to consider under what name you will operate. You can use your own name or create a name. If you have your own website or blog, consider using the same name for your business. Creating a name for your business, is the first step from moving yourself from a hobby to a real business person.

Step Three-Where's The Cash Coming From?

Ok, it’s time to talk cash ! Every business no matter how large or small needs some money to get started. How much money you will need depends on your goals and business plan. If you are planning to market anywhere on the internet, you need inventory before you market. In other words, you have to have product to sell, so once you determine how much per unit each project will cost, you will determine how many units you want to make to get started. But once you start rolling, while you can expect some profit to turn back into your business, you will need some seed money to keep going. How far and how fast your business moves, not only depends on the product and your marketing, but also the availability of what you have to offer. So as you can see, you will need to determine how much money you will need and where it will come from.

Create A Separate Checking Account

Another important step to take is to have a separate checking account for your business transactions. Separating your home checking is vital to your overall business transactions. It makes your accounting easier and will help you file your income taxes

Step Four-Where Will You Sell Online

Once you have decided what you are going to sell, how much it will cost to produce and what you will sell it for, it's now time to decide where to sell it.
There are many options for crafters to market thier goods, and many of them do not cost any upfront money. Here are some basic ideas for you to consider.

1. Facebook-offers a Shopify which you can set up for a set amount per month

2. Etsy Is famous for homemade goods

3. Ebay- Lots of traffic and lots of competion

Where Can You Sell Offline?

You can also decide to sell your crafts offline. There are a variety of venues that you can use. Selling at these venues will require product inventory, so you will need to take time to craft ahead of these events.

  1. Flea Markets You will have to rent a booth and have display materials. You will need money for your rent and a substancial inventory. This may be for you if you want to sell your crafts on weekends. You will need a way to process credit cards and a way to collect taxes in your state if they are applicable
  2. Craft Fairs and Bazzars These are special events that draw large crowds. Generally you rent your table. Usually these are special events that are publicized and get good traffic
  3. Local Boutiques Beauty and Nail Salons Try to get some items in any one of these. Include some business cards and you will have some extra income
  4. Do A Home Show Invite some of your friends over for coffee and show your products

Remember that if you are thinking about selling online, you will have to think about packaging and mailing costs too !

Step Five-You Need To Understand How To Price Your Items

There is a lot of thought that goes into pricing your items. There are also a number of formulas and ideas on how to price. What you might think your item is worth may not be what the market will bear. First, do your research. Look for like items and see what the going price for the same and similar product might be.

Then figure out what your price point is. Again, if you are selling online, you need to add shipping and handling as well as applicable taxes in your state or country.

Learn more about how to price your crafts

Step Six-Have The Appropriate Business Licenses and Laws Covered

Even if you are simply making crafts in your home, you need to understand the laws in your state and municipality or city regarding doing business. It's important to start off on the right foot. Ignorance is not bliss. The very last thing that you need to do is to create a problem for yourself or your family. You need to understand the laws for taxes-income and sales taxes. How you need to set up a business, and how you will keep your books. You also need to understand the difference between a hobby and a business by federal and state laws. Want to learn more about the laws in your state?

Hobby Business Checklist

(click column header to sort results)
Products/ Crafts  
Business Needs  
Legal Considerations  
What will you make?
Where will you get the money for your business?
Do you need a local or state busineess license?
How much inventory will you need?
How much money do you need to start your business?
How will you collect state sales tax? Get a state sales tax certificate
What supplies fo you need to make the products?
How will you be doing business-sole proprietor or otherwise?
Register your business name unless you are using your own name
Where will you get the supplies?
What will be the name of your business?
Pay quarterly estimated income tax if you expect to make $1000 or more /year
How much time does it take to make the product ?
Where will you be doing business?
Speak to an attorney if you have any questions
What will you charge for the product?
Set up a serarate checking account
Get an emplyee identification number if not using your own name for the business
Where will you sell the product?
Make or get business cards
Speak to an accountant or a CPA to make sure all your legal obligations are met
How much will you charge for the product?
Will you accept credit cards?
Speak to your insurance agent to find out how to cover your business supplies and inventory

Your Business Workspace

Before you get started, you need to have a defined workspace where you are able to craft your wares. Setting this space up in a unique area, will set your business to be very workable. You will need to define that space for your business after you have determined how much space you will need for your supplies and inventory

Final Craft Business Thought

It sounds like a lot to do before you can get started in your craft business, but in order to do it successfully, you need to do it right. It is a decision that only you can decide for yourself. If the time is right to take a full time or part time stab at your own business, then get started on the right foot. Do your homework ! Get your plan ! Learn more about your craft ! There is money to be made ! Good luck !

Have You Started A Craft Business?

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    • linfcor profile image

      Linda F Correa 2 years ago from Spring Hill Florida

      I agree that testing the waters is a good way to go. Taking it one step at a time makes the process simpler. Checking out the market to see what's selling and trending is important. Pinterest is a good source of information

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

      I have done this and have found that some products almost sell themselves while other good products you can almost not give away. Definitely go in small to test it out.