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What to Sell on Etsy

Updated on September 1, 2014
What can you offer Etsy?
What can you offer Etsy? | Source

So, you want to open an Etsy shop

Etsy is an ever-growing online marketplace that is full of entrepreneurs who are making real money. It's only natural that more and more people are looking for a way to join Etsy and start making money.

But, before you jump in, it's important to have a plan. The first thing you need to consider before opening an Etsy shop is what you will sell.

What You Can Sell on Etsy

Etsy is different from some of the other online shops out there because Etsy has very tight restrictions on what you can and cannot sell. Etsy is a marketplace for crafters, artists and collectors. With that in mind, here are the things you can sell on Etsy:

Items Made By You
Some outside help is okay but if you're selling handmade, most of the work should be done by yourself. Etsy loves original and unique handmade items. This category also includes digital artworks and printables that are designed by the seller.

Craft Supplies
Raw materials such as yarn, paint and buttons go in this category along with tools like knitting needles and patterns.

Vintage Items
An item is considered vintage if it as at least 20 years old. Vintage goods do not need to be handmade.

What Not To Sell On Etsy

Within the different categories of what you can sell on Etsy, there are some things that are prohibited. Some of the prohibited items include firearms, medicine, and live animals. Please visit Etsy for a full list of prohibited items.

Do You Create or Craft?

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Are You Crafty or Artistic?

The first category of things you can sell on Etsy is "Handmade By You". Let's brainstorm some things that might be included in that category.

Remember to always play to your strengths and to choose something that you truly enjoy. What good is selling hand painted chairs if you hate doing it?

I'm sure it won't take too much thinking to find something that you can sell. Think about your hobbies first. Do you like to paint? Crochet? Sew? Make bird houses? Scrapbook? Collect Vintage items?

If you made it - you can sell it!
If you made it - you can sell it! | Source

Here are just a few things ideas of crafty and artsy hobbies that may be turned into a successful Etsy shop. Remember, the only limitation is that it must be crafted by you with minimal outside help (more on that later)

  • Painting on any media including canvas, wood, furniture, etc.
  • watercolors
  • drawing and sketches
  • mixed media
  • Digital art - posters, printables, digital paper
  • Graphic Design - logos, banners, etc
  • Scrapbook layouts
  • handmade furniture
  • crochet & knitting
  • cross stitch
  • embroidery
  • sewing - handmade clothes, curtains, etc
  • decoupage
  • screenprinting
  • paper making
  • card making
  • lotion making
  • baking (Yes! People sell baked goods on Etsy!)

This is just a sampling of some of the great handmade items that you can buy and sell on Etsy!

Outside Manufacturers

Etsy allows some outside help for sellers who sell handmade goods. For example, a designer might design a shirt and then use a local screen printer to actually make the product. Certain restrictions do apply to this so make sure you know the rules first.

Etsy asks that sellers fill out an application for approval in working with an outside manufacturer. As always, it is important to be completely honest when describing your manufacturer and what they contribute to your product line.

Sell craft supplies on Etsy
Sell craft supplies on Etsy | Source

Sell Craft Supplies

If you have a wholesale supplier for craft supplies, you can sell them at retail prices on Etsy.

Craft Supplies Include:

  • yarn
  • fabric
  • sewing notions
  • thread
  • crochet hooks
  • knitting needles
  • patterns for sewing, crochet, embroidery, etc
  • canvases
  • paint
  • paint brushes
  • sequins & glitter
  • glue
  • scrapbook paper

I'm sure you get the idea with this list! Not sure if something is acceptable? Trying searching for that item on Etsy. Chances are if someone else is selling it than you can too!

You can sell vintage Barbie on Etsy
You can sell vintage Barbie on Etsy | Source

Sell Vintage Items

Etsy also welcomes vintage products in it's marketplace.

Here are some ideas of vintage items that you might want to sell in your Etsy shop:

  • vintage clothes
  • home d├ęcor
  • jewelry
  • toys
  • books
  • artwork
  • photographs
  • holiday decorations
  • kitchen appliances
  • tableware

If you love antiquing and have an eye for unique, beautiful and valuable items then Etsy might be the place for you! Etsy says that something can be considered vintage when it is more than 20 years old.

Are You An Etsy Shopkeeper?

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Ready To Open Shop?

I hope this article has helped you find the perfect idea for what to sell in your Etsy shop! If you're ready, head on over and open your shop today!

If you're still, not sure, check out some of the articles below to learn more about the Etsy experience.


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    • Sarah Switalski profile imageAUTHOR

      Sarah Switalski 

      4 years ago from Iowa

      Glad to help! Best of luck with your Etsy store!

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 

      4 years ago from Norfolk

      I have just begun working on my Etsy store so this info comes in at a good time. Thanks for sharing.

    • Sarah Switalski profile imageAUTHOR

      Sarah Switalski 

      4 years ago from Iowa

      Congratulations Scarleeohairy! I love it there too :)

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 

      4 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I sold two items on Etsy this weekend. I love Etsy!

    • Sarah Switalski profile imageAUTHOR

      Sarah Switalski 

      4 years ago from Iowa

      Thanks GrammieOlivia! It's a great place to make extra money if you have some talent for creating or finding things :)

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Lots of really good information here. Thanks for the tips, I will have to put my thinking cap on again.

    • Sarah Switalski profile imageAUTHOR

      Sarah Switalski 

      4 years ago from Iowa

      truthfornow - thanks for the comment. It's a really fun place to browse - you never know what you will find!

    • truthfornow profile image


      4 years ago from New Orleans, LA

      They have a lot of talented people on Etsy with a lot of cute and unique gifts for sale. I didn't know that you could sell craft supplies on there. Thanks for the info.


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