Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

Crafting an income:

You're creative, good at making things - but can you make a living from it?
By Motherpedia
Date: March 21 2015
Editor Rating:

Many mums like making crafts and people tell them they should start their own business selling their creations. But is it really that easy? Can just anyone make money in the crafting business?

For centuries handcrafters have been seeking ways to viably earn an income from their craft. However, today’s technology and development of homemade marketplaces, like Etsy and Not On the High Street, have made it easier for mums to make a profit online.

Nobody knows this better than long-time friends and Australian handcrafters, Carlene Hunt and Robin Smith.  Eighteen months ago they launched The Handcrafted Shop, a one-stop market for buyers and sellers of quality handmade products and unique gifts.

The founding partners have always had craft in their lives, and now with their business are assisting hundreds of crafty mums to earn an income through their own unique giftware and handicrafts.

They share top tips for turning a passion for craft into a sustainable stream of income.

Don’t Limit Your Market Demographic

Many handcrafters hold stalls at regional arts and crafts markets, working the market circuit on a cyclical basis. While this does offer exposure to your products and can lead to repeat business, it also limits your market reach.  

Ostensibly, you will feel like your stall is receiving good exposure; however your product is only visible to potential buyers who visit the market.

Carlene Hunt recommends supplementing your physical stall with a virtual store.

Describe Yourself as a Designer, not a Crafter

When people think of crafters, the image is often of a little old lady with her knitting. While handcrafters themselves know this is not the case, the connotation remains. Carlene recommends using the title ‘designer’ instead. It is a stronger, more professional sounding moniker and strikes a chord in the buyer seeking bespoke or unique pieces

Treat your Crafting as a Business

While this may speak for itself, it is easy to set up a physical or online store and just assume the sales will roll in. Carlene urges everyone to build and promote their business.

Use an Online Marketplace that Supports Their Store Holders

When Carlene and Robin founded The Handcrafted Shop they were adamant that a key objective would be to create a platform for people to build a business and earn an income from their craft.  To this end The Handcrafted Shop provides the opportunity for handcrafters to operate their own small business for a minimal outlay. 

They recommend store holders have their own checklist:

  • Will you be charged only a small monthly rental, with no additional fees?
  • Are sellers limited by the number of goods they list in their stores?
  • Will sellers be charged for uploading pictures?
  • Can stallholders expect a high level of service and support, with hands on assistance with any technical or functional issues?
  • Are resources freely available to help stallholders operate and grow the most successful business they can?  
  • Will the online marketplace be actively promoted through trade shows and expos, and via various social media streams?

Finally, Carlene and Robin’s top tip is to believe in yourself. They have seen the lives and livelihoods of many handcrafters transformed through selling their crafts, and Carlene says that sometimes it simply comes down to a combination of hard work and a real belief in yourself and your products. 

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kate john says: 2017 07 26

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kate john says: 2017 07 26

Pleasant composed and incorporate all noteworthy information. I might want to see more posts like this.

kate john says: 2017 07 26

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