Is selling your handmade work providing you with enough income or would you like to find additional income streams without having to produce and sell more pieces? If you’re like other crafts people I know, you probably would love to find some hidden cash to provide what my friend Barbara Winter calls “multiple profit centers”.
Regardless of what type of crafts you make, there’s easy profit hiding right under your nose (or in your studio.) These methods apply to almost any creative art form but let’s use jewelry as an example since many of you create hand made jewelry. You probably experience busy seasons in your business like Christmas, Valentines Day and Mother’s Day when you can barely keep up with demand for your jewelry. But what about summer when, unless you are in a tourist area, things probably slow down? Do you feel a cash crunch come July? How would you like to have a steady stream of income flowing in year round? It’s not only possible but super do-able.
Let’s say you do beadwork. What other ways can you turn your craft into cash besides selling your jewelry? Here are a few examples:
-Write down and diagram instructions for a piece or technique that’s unique to you or has been a hot-seller.
-Video-tape yourself creating the piece.
-Make up kits with all the supplies and components to make that piece.
-Bundle the instructions, video and supplies into a kit that you sell on your website. You might even create a kit-of-the-month club. Members can sign up to receive a new design with instructions and supplies each month.
-Ask your friends to host a make-and-take party where rather than selling your jewelry, attendees can make a piece of jewelry. They purchase the supplies and instructions from you. The party can also be a fundraiser for a charity, church or school group. Of course take the opportunity to promote your “membership” club and let the attendees know that you are available to do parties for them too.
-Have VIP days for someone who might want to have one-to-one time with you for private tutorials.
These are just a few examples of how you can leverage your knowledge to create additional income from your art. Check the blog often for more tips on finding the hidden cash in your craft.
My male friends, relatives and readers may deny this, but let’s face it, most men don’t start Christmas shopping early. (they come up with excuses like “it’s more exciting right before Christmas when everyone’s in the holiday spirit” or, “I’m still trying to come up with the perfect gift”. The truth is, many guys don’t know where to begin and need guidance (and a little nudge.)
As a crafter with inventory, you can take advantage of their procrastination and need for gentle “peer pressure” by holding a “Guys’ Night Out”.
Whether you make wearable, household, or garden art, men need guidance in getting gifts for their wives, girlfriends and mothers. They also spend way more money when they are in groups because they don’t want to look cheap in front of the other guys.
(especially if these guys are hubbies or boyfriends of their wife’s friends. ) So, invite your friends’ partners, your partner’s friends, the guys from your day job-(and if you still have a day job, you really do need these hints) and “help” them choose a gift for the
women in their lives. They’ll particularly love if you know what styles, colors, etc their partner likes. If you are single and don’t have lots of male buddies, another great venue is any kind of club where men gather. An upscale barber shop or men’s spa is always a great place and remember they will be glad to have you.
Are you wondering how you will entice the men to come? Partner with a caterer, winery or brewery to do a tasting. Vintners love to do pourings at upscale events to promote their wines. In fact, they’ll often be thrilled if you hold the event at their tasting room. Didn’t your mother always tell you that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach?
Well, it’s also a great way to get the wallet out of the pocket, cash into your hands, and your creations under the tree.
For 12 more great ideas like this, click here to receive your Free Copy of “13 Quick, Easy, Low-cost or NO-cost Ways to
Turn your Craft into Cash NOW!”
This past week, the news was full of more doom and gloom about retail closings and mall bankruptcies. It would be easy to get discouraged, thinking, “If a big department store that’s been in business for generations can’t make it, how will I?” Well, you aren’t in competition with the big box stores. And if you’re comparing yourself to them, it’s time for a major mindset shift.
Your target customer is the discriminating shopper who wants something unique and handcrafted. Yes, people are being more careful with their dollars now and you have the advantage in that when times are tight, consumers want what they are spending on to be special. They may not be shopping for household appliances right now but when it comes time to purchase a gift or a piece of artwork for their home, they are making conscious choices and want something they don’t see everywhere.
Keep sight of who you are and what your work is all about. You are an artist and unless you are not staying ahead of the off-shore knock-offs, you have no reason to be concerned about ‘competition. You have something special that your customers are proud to give. They love to tell the recipient that they met the artist in person-it’s important to know the story behind their purchase.
Right now it’s more important than ever to have your products “shout” of handmade. Take the time to put hangtags on each piece, identifying it as handmade, maybe even talking about the technique. Include a bio and ideally a headshot. Remember, it’s the human connection that makes the difference.