As you’ve already discovered; sewing is an amazing hobby that lets you use your creativity, save money on clothes and home accessories, and gives you some “me time”.
But eventually you may find your home is overrun with artsy pillows, cute tops, and adorable children’s clothing. Is there a way you can make money with your crafts?
You may have sold some items to friends or neighbors, but you want to do more. Here are some ideas for making money with your creations.
Set Up a Booth at the Local Farmer’s Market
Most people don’t shop the farmer’s market for the cheapest price. They are looking for the freshest, healthiest foods. They aren’t bargain hunters.
This is one of the reasons many Farmer’s Markets include craft vendors. The shoppers are willing to pay extra for quality, hand-crafted products.
Make sure your items are displayed nicely in your booth and are easy to access. Post in local Facebook groups to let people know when and where your booth will be open and what you offer.
Have cards or brochures to hand-out that include the address of your website, blog, or online store. If people don’t buy from you right now, they’ll know how to find you later.
Start an Etsy Store
The advantages of Etsy are it’s easier than building your own webpage. Also, people are already coming to Etsy to buy handcrafted items so you don’t have to find ways to bring visitors to your site. They are already aware that handmade items cost more so you’ve crossed that hurdle.
The most important thing in your store is to take quality photographs of your items. Use natural lightening and nice backgrounds. Post as many photos of each item as allowed. Then write detailed descriptions of each item listing sizes, types of material used, and care used in making each item.
Answer any questions as quickly as possible.
Build a Blog and Specialize
Trying to sell to everyone is a recipe for business failure. It means you must make a huge inventory of products and you must pay to advertise to large groups of people.
Instead, pick one audience and become the expert on those types of products. It could be baby clothes, trendy home decorations, iPhone or iPad covers, or quilts.
You can then advertise to that small group of people. Get them to sign-up for your email list so you can send them discount coupons and let them know when you have a new product line.
A loyal tribe is better than a mass of people you have no way to reach.
Selling a quilt is nice, but what if you offered to take baby clothes that a child has outgrown and make a quilt for that toddler with those clothes?
Or maybe you can make shirts for local sports teams or book bags for reading clubs.
No one can walk into a store and by these types of personalized items, so you won’t be competing with the big box stores. By personalizing your creations, you can become the go to person for these one of kind creations.
Teach a Class
If you know how to sew there are several ways to make money teaching others your craft.
First, you can start a local class. There are local Facebook groups where you can promote your class for no charge. But each group is different, some allow no business promotions, and some allow posting only once a week. So read all the rules before posting or risk being removed from the group.
For a small class you can meet in your home. As the class grows you can look for rooms at the local library, craft stores, or your church.
But you don’t have to restrict yourself to only locals. You can teach a course on Udemy or sell a video course from your own website or blog.
Make informative videos on YouTube and then post a link to your paid course in the comments.
Start your own sewing group on Facebook and answer questions and share value. Then promote your paid courses as you add new ones.
This is similar to the above but it’s a one on one situation. You might go to someone’s house who just bought a new sewing machine. Show them how to set it up and get started with the basic stitches.
Then teach them how to make a few projects.
You can also teach lessons one on one on Skype.
The cost of these lessons should be considerably higher than what you’d charge for lessons. But the students have the advantage of being able to ask you questions directly and help decide which projects to work on.
You have learned a valuable skill and with some imagination and effort you can use that skill to make some cold hard cash.