You've always loved to craft. Now that your budget could use a bit of a financial boost, you're thinking of selling crafts in your spare time. It's a great idea, but you don't want to be sitting under a canopy in the park all day with nothing to show for it. What crafts should you make and sell?
Decide if you will continue with crafts you already make or take the time to learn new skills for a new craft. Either way, the most important aspect of sellable crafts is that they are different from anyone else's. People who shop at craft sales are looking for something unique. They want, for themselves or for a gift, something that no one else has seen before. It doesn't mean if you knit and crochet that you still shouldn't continue to make winter scarves and beanie hats, which are popular winter wear. You just have to look for a creative twist to your project. For example, a scarf made from a worsted weight yarn is nice, but plain. Add one or two additional yarns (with different textures and colors) and you have an original, upscale product.
To make a three-strand scarf, work all three yarn lines together as one. Use larger needles. This will depend on the thickness of your three yarns. Start with size 12 knitting needles and adjust the size of needles until you get the stitch tightness that you prefer.
Don't create too many different types of crafts. A cohesive display is more attractive and will draw more customers to your craft booth. Many different categories make a craft display look messy and unorganized. Choose only one to three different types of crafts. For example, with your scarves and hats you might sell a jewelry line. They are both wearable products. When spring comes, keep the jewelry offerings, take out the winter wear and add bright bags and purses.
Spring and Summer
Consider which crafts will sell better seasonally. As spring approaches, garden crafts and outdoor decorations of any type are popular. Anything that brings the season into the home will also be a good seller. You don't have to have an artist's hand to create individualized painted clay pots. Don't just think of spring colors, but also bright summer colors when you paint them. Put multicolored stripes on them, using masking tape to get even, sharp lines. Use stencils to add images. Use acrylic paints, which can easily be found at your local discount or craft store. Give your clay pots a couple of coats, inside and out, with a clear polyurethane sealer. It will seal in your paint job and give it a brighter, shinier appearance.
Selling your pots empty is probably your best bet. You can never be sure how customers will want to use their painted pot. But, don't stop there. Give your customers ideas and offer some completed projects. Add plants to a few of your pots. Make one a flowering patio plant, another a house plant and finally a small herb garden. Create a few garden gifts by filling painted pots with garden gloves, hand tools and seeds. Wrap it as a gift with clear cellophane tied with raffia at the top. Take a few more pots and add natural stones or florist marbles to hold pillar candles.
Fall and Winter
Crafts for fall are all about the harvest and Halloween. Create more harvest-related items than Halloween, as you will sell them longer and they can be used through Thanksgiving. If you still have some unpainted clay pots from summer, use fall colors for the outside and create a few dry or silk flower arrangements. Do the same with Christmas arrangements, adding pine and pinecones. The specialty winter scarves and hats that wouldn't have sold during spring and summer can now be brought out for display.
It's tempting to make a lot of Christmas décor items. It's nice to include some of these types of crafts if they are within your skill set, however, more people will be looking for unusual gifts for those on their holiday shopping list.
Karen Ellis has been a full-time writer since 2006. She is an expert crafter, with more than 30 years of experience in knitting, chrocheting, quilting, sewing, scrapbooking and other arts. She is an expert gardener, with lifelong experience. Ellis has taken many classes in these subjects and taught classes, as well.