What are some crafts I could make to sale?

Question by curiousgeorge: What are some crafts I could make to sale?
My friend and I are looking for some crafts that we could make at home that wouldn’t cost a lot that we could sale.
We have already started making crochet baby hats, baby booties, tutus, and things like that. Is there anything else that we could make??

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Answer by Regan
Stick houses

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  1. Miz T says:

    First, make sure that there’s a market in your area. Then make sure that you *can* sell your products for enough money to make a profit after paying for your materials, your supplies, your travel, and other incidentals. Don’t go head-to-head with handcrafted items from 3rd world countries because they can undersell you AND make a profit every time.

    Second, make sure that you’re making things that your target market can use. If you’re in a retirement community, market those baby booties and hats as boxed sets to grandmas who will send them for gifts. If you’re in a young market, say a military community with lots of expectant moms, market them as heirlooms that they’ll keep for 30 years as a reminder of their child’s baby days. Same with the tutus–which are an excellent idea, because they are very trendy and you probably CAN sell them for enough to pay back the expenses of making and marketing them and return you a profit (you might also want to include a headband or hair decoration to make yours “stand out”). They’ll sell either as gifts for a younger generation or directly to parents of “girly girls.” But your marketing techniques are going to be different depending on your target group.

    Third, be sure that you price your items “right.” That doesn’t mean “cheap.” I just read in the newspaper about two guys in a garage that are making hand-crafted rollerball pens that they sell for $ 150 each. And they’re selling enough pens to support themselves, when most people are picking up rollerball pens at Walmart for $ 1.50 (note the relative positions of the decimals). If you want to sell in an upscale market (which I recommend for hand-crafted, heirloom items), use good materials, particularly where it matters, and excellent craftsmanship. Use packaging and labeling that suggest “upscale” (tissue paper, not Zip-Loc bags–compare shopping at Talbots or Nordstrom with buying similar items at Target). Baby things can be crafted as heirlooms: the first cap and booties, the christening outfit, the crib blanket with the name and birth date, and so on. The tutus, not so much. They’ll be worn, worn out, and passe in a couple of years.

    For this time of year, you might think “spring scarf” and adapt this pattern: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/queen-annes-lace-scarf Incidentally, holiday-themed items appear to sell well, particularly if they are cute and unique. Holiday food items, if it’s legal to do so in your area, are often good sellers. Around here, there’s a Saturday morning craft market every week that sells holiday-themed hand-crafted “stuff” (St. Patrick’s Day cupcakes and cookies, for example), and a couple of the churches (Episcopal and Catholic) have holiday-themed sales of cookies, decorations, and related items. You could visit and see what’s selling before you make a significant commitment.

    If you’re in a tourist area (I am), find an outlet for things that would interest tourists. What I’ve seen is packaged note cards with prints of local landmarks on them, painted wooden cut-outs of local landmarks, local collection cookbooks, Christmas ornaments made from local materials, and that sort of thing. A note card with a picture (watercolor, pen & ink, Photoshopped photo) and unique local recipe might work for you. A bag of beans with a local-flavor bean-soup recipe might work.

    Once you have decided on an array of products to concentrate on, remember that you are collecting sales tax, so you do not PAY sales tax on your materials and supplies. Get a tax number and use it when you buy for your business. Look for wholesale suppliers who will sell to you in the quantities you need, and look for the lowest possible total price for the quality of supplies and materials you need. NEVER pay retail prices if you can help it.

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