Start a Craft Business. Take your hobby to the next level.... sales!
Do you create lots of crafts for your friends and family? Are they always getting you to "make" them something? This is something I used to do. I would create a unique purse, and then everyone else would want one. But I remember, one weekend, while I was making everyone else a unique purse, they were all out enjoying their weekend.
I remember thinking "what is wrong with this picture" Since they were friends and family, I had not had the nerve to charge them for anything other than the supplies, which they usually purchased for me. But here I was, working away on a Saturday, to make these crafts, and not getting anything for it.
This is when I thought. Well, if they like these purses and many other things I have created, then why wouldn't anyone else? I just had to get the word out, that I was now making the leap from hobby to craft business, starting today!
I finished up the crafts, making them some of my best work yet. I went and got business cards made up at the local printer (some will do it within hours now) came to work, armed with their goods, and told them of my new venture. Was not sure how they would take it, but seemed impressed.
I told them, they could have these products for free, on one condition, that they advertise for me. Use the purse, keep some of my cards on them for anyone who asks, "who made that great purse". They all agreed, and I brainstormed prices with them. Many of them had shopped in crafts stores, shows and malls, and were familiar with pricing, even though they were not crafty themselves.
This is one way to get started. Get your friends working as "marketing reps" by giving them free products to display, wear or showoff. Word of mouth is a great way to market.
If you are creative, and your house is filling up with all those precious creations!.. Then why not take it to the next level? Depending on your craft, maybe start using that purse you made, or wear some of your unique jewelry, or painted t-shirt, or whatever you do, become your own walking billboard. Get creative, find ways to show it off, sit it on your desk, anything to get some attention on your work. Make sure and have business cards, with a phone number and a email address. If you have a website, put it on the card.
You are obviously passionate and serious about your craft, as you do this for a hobby or stress relief from the daily grind for no money right now! This also means that you create quality work, that is why, it has often been said, that your business should be based on something you are passionate about and have some knowledge for it to succeed. Take your hobby to the next level. Start your own craft business.
Once you have let your friends and family know about your new business venture, why not start by looking in your paper for a local craft show?.. It doesn't have to be a big one, you quite often find local farmers markets, organized town picnics, or small fairs and church bazaars will have space available to rent for very little. Or piggy back with another crafter and share the rent. This is a great place to get your feet wet in craft shows. These local small shows, are not usually very expensive, and would give you a idea of which creations market the best.
You will also get the feel of the public eye, and it is nice to get praise for your work, and hopefully you receive some sales as well.. There is nothing more satisfying, then making that first sale!
That is the day you officially become a business instead of a hobby! Start thinking of a catchy name for your craft business and start making money.