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A list of incredible popular things to make and sell for profit: start your DIY side hustle today!
Do you love crafts?
And I especially love when you can make some extra money while being creative! If making things from scratch brings you happiness and DIY is your passion, have a go at starting your own craft business on the side.
And who knows what this could bring?
Every once in a while, we read a news article about someone who has left their high-stress, long-hour job to pursue making and selling a product and has achieved more success than they imagined.
We all want to be that person! It’s inspiring to think that we can set our own hours, spend our days producing items that resonate with us and that we enjoy, and still be able to afford to live our best lives.
Well, you really can do this, but to do it, you need to have a game plan. You have to decide what you’re going to sell, your marketing strategy, and how much you need to sell your items for.
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What can I make that I can sell to make money fast?
This is the kicker, right? When we branch out into these selling plans, we want – and often need – to see a return on our efforts quickly. Unless you have a stockpile of heavy-labor items such as crochet, sewing, and other products that take a little more time to produce, you’ll want to concentrate on things that you can make in bulk, fast.
A general rule of thumb is calculating how much it costs to create each item, including the cost of selling if you pay for a host site and incidentals like your business license if you need one, and mark your profit from there. Be sure to check competitors’ prices as you don’t want to market yourself out. If you can’t source and create for cheaper than the going rates, find another craft to sell.
After all, this is about making money, not spending it!
What handmade items sell best online?
Lucky for you, there’s no shortage of items that fit the bill for attractive, fast, able to be made in bulk, and can get the quick turn around that you need! The following are just a few examples of things you can make and sell from home that are almost always a hit with people.
Top popular things to make and sell for profit
1. Bath bombs
Found on A Beautiful Mess
Bath bombs can be as simple or as complicated as you want to make them. With a few cheap ingredients, you can make a base to which you can add essential oils, botanicals, cosmetic glitter, and more. Don’t forget the popularity of the ‘secret surprise’ bath bombs and consider tucking a little treat into the center.
Once you have the molds, it’s super easy to turn out dozens of bath bombs a day, and when you consider they resale for $5 and up each, it’s an attractive business prospect.
Get started: How to Make Bath Bombs
People love pillows and cushions. In fact, season pillows are a thing, and there are lots of people who swap out their throw pillows to match the time of year. So take a look into this one. Not only it’s super simple to sew a pillow, but there’s also an endless variety of fabrics and patterns to choose from.
You can easily develop a niche market for specialty throw pillows in no time.
Get started: How to Make a Fluffy Homemade Pillow
Found on A Beautiful Mess
Gone are the days of airbrushed t-shirts. From artful cutting, inventive dying, and at-home silk-screening, you can make fantastic unique, personalized t-shirts for any occasion. T-Shirts are a pretty difficult thing to pass up, so it’s worth your time to look into this craft idea.
Get started: How to Start A T-Shirt Business
4. Gift baskets
Let’s face it: gift baskets will never die. That doesn’t mean that we all have to make do with the standard sausage and cheese offerings, though. Custom gift baskets are remarkably high-end and a thoughtful gift, so don’t skip this option. An added bonus is that you’re likely to have less competition in the market.
5. Personalized gifts
This can be anything from a date stamp on an item of jewelry to a special screen-printed T-shirt or a door hanger. We just love to make our own spaces with little personalized touches, so definitely take personalized gifts into consideration.
You’re likely to get more advance orders than day-to-day sales, but you’ll be able to charge higher prices.
Found on The Lovely Drawer
What began as a boho trend has now become a sophisticated jewelry option that incorporates polished beads, agate slices, and natural gemstones in settings. Due to the popularity, gemstone crafter supply sources offer a wide variety of wires and settings, making it easy to produce professional-looking results at home.
Get started: How To Start A Jewellery Making Business
Honestly, is there anything better than a sweetly-scented candle? They’re everywhere in our lives, whether we realize it or not, so use some of that available market to turn a profit for yourself.
Get started: How To Make Candles
This is one option where you can get inventive and creative! Be sure to check your state laws on edibles, and have some fun. Chocolates, cakes, and cookies are always in demand, and when you make your own, you can offer the public a higher-quality product than a mass-produced treat. Consider catering to special needs, such as diabetics, gluten-free, or vegan, to amp up your client base.
Get started: How To Start An Online Food Business
9. Homemade dog treats
We love our furry best friends, and sometimes, commercial treats can be a little scary. Help owners ensure their beloved canine friends stay in great health with tasty, good for them treats, and you’ll have a client base as loyal as the pet. It’s for this reason that dog treats are rapidly becoming one of the favorite crafts to make and sell from home.
Get started: How To Start A Dog Treat Business
10. Natural cosmetics
Found on Fall For DIY
We all want to look our best, but the amount of chemicals and additives in cosmetics is a little scary. Whip up some of your own and counter the market with a healthier alternative. This idea does take a little more time and effort with recipes and containers for all your beautifying products, but if you manage to deliver the goods that benefit and help people feel pretty with natural products, you could create a whole new venture.
Inspiration: How To Make Lip Balm and Turn It Into a Business
11. Digital printables
Wait, what? How can you make money selling something that’s not a physical thing? Depending on your skills, it’s entirely possible. If you love graphic design and have some basic Photoshop skills, you can create digital printables, budget templates, wedding invitations, or organizers. It’s a growing market, and some people make hundreds of thousands of dollars selling digital products!
Get started: How To Sell Digital Products
They’re everywhere. Teenagers love to put pins on their clothes and backpacks, and adults need pins to commemorate events. Magnets are a way to add a quick bit of kitsch to a kitchen, as well as needed to hold reminders of important events. Design a few stellar examples and start selling your unique take.
13. Art and prints
Found on The Lovely Drawer
Are you a shutterbug? Do you spend your free time doodling and painting? You already have a product! Not only can you sell directly to your clients at art fairs, but you can also sell images as stock photos, greeting card art, and more.
Get started: How To Sell Art Online
14. Sewn items
Some sewn items can take a long time to complete, but some are pretty simple yet bring a hefty price tag to the creator. Examples are curtains, tablecloths, and more. Don’t ignore the entire market of soft-items for children, such as crayon aprons, soft books, and more. It’s the perfect way to mix creativity with revenue.
Found on Sugar & Cloth
We all need them, and none of us want ours to be boring. Help someone spruce up their furniture protection. There’s also a niche market for personalized coasters for weddings and baby showers that double as a gift to attendees.
16. Picture frames
These days, the frame is as important as the picture. Craft exceptional frames, and you’ll have clients knocking down your doors for the perfect accent to their much-loved artwork and portraits.
Whether it’s stock photography or portraits, all you need to get started is a good camera and a better photo-editing software program. Start taking test shots and learning what you can about good photography’s technical aspects, and you might just find a new business.
Get started: How To Sell Photos Online
Found on Room For Tuesday
We all need to get clean, but when we choose a decadent, homemade, and outright gorgeous way to do it, bath time is just so much more fun. Because it’s such a popular thing to sell from home, there’s a definite market, though you might have to work a little bit more to get your products noticed.
19. Tote bags
When you sell a product that your clients can feel good about using, you’re on track for success. Tote bags are just one of those, considering they can save hundreds of plastic bags from entering our environment in any given year. A bonus is the plethora of blank bags available for reasonable prices, just waiting for your design to be stamped on. Making and selling a functional product from home can be rewarding.
Found on Almost Makes Perfect
This one isn’t so quick, but the appeal of quality ceramics is undeniable. With technological progress, it’s even possible to get into ceramics without outfitting an entire workshop, so it might just be the thing for you. As far as crafts to make and sell goes, ceramics has stood the test of time in the market.
How to start your own craft shop in 5 simple steps with no cash
1. Pick your Product
Do you have an idea of what you want to try your hand at? Carefully review the items above and pick the one that best suits your interest and abilities. It’s shocking how many things to make and sell from home there actually are!
2. Choose a name
That pesky name – but you have to have one! While it’s not unheard of for names to change, consider your name carefully, to avoid problems down the line. You ideally want something memorable, easy to pronounce, and that fits your vibe.
3. Register your shop with Shopify for free
When you’re just starting out, every dollar counts. That’s why I love Shopify! You can set up your seller account without paying a single dollar, and the layout is exceptionally easy in terms of uploading your photos and product details.
You can register for free today to hold your shop’s name while you get everything ready.
4. Decide what type of business you want to run
This is important because while you’re making money, you’re also responsible for paying taxes on your newfound revenue. There’s no one else to report it. To know what taxes you need to pay, you have to decide what type of business you’re going to run. Will you be an LLC, a sole proprietor, or something else? Have a look at your local tax laws for each type of business before deciding.
5. Start selling!
Ready, set, go! Once you have it all together, upload your wares, do your advertising, and you’re in business! Just like that, you’re running your own company, selling things from your own home. If you play it smart and reach the right market with your product, you’re on your way to achieving the dream we all have of quitting our day job and spending our lives in work we find fulfilling.
And if you need more help, get inspired by this article in which I share my top tips to start an online shop.
Other places to sell your crafts online
Shopify is outstanding, but you can branch out to other shopping sites. It’s not always a bad idea to place your homemade goods for sale through several different platforms.
What I loved about marketplaces when I used to sell crafts online was the exposure to a huge customer base. It can be much easier for people to find your products on established platforms.
- Etsy: the familiar standby of all things homemade, handcrafted, and unique, Etsy has a huge buyer/seller market. You can check out my guide to start an Etsy shop here.
- Handmade at Amazon: dip into the Amazon Marketplace with this side-avenue of crafters and sellers.
- Handmade Artists: another online marketplace for handcrafted items.
- Handmadeology Market: everything and anything has a place in this venue, so long as it’s crafted by hand.
- Hyena Cart: this venue has a focus on eco-friendly products.
- iCraft Gifts: this one might be better suited to personalized crafts, such as t-shirts, frames, coasters, and more.
- Zibbet: relatively new, Zibbet is becoming the place to find unique art, prints, and design work, crafted by artists just like you.
Pros and cons of starting and growing your crafts business
Once you get up and running, you have to realize that it’s not all roses. There are some definite pros to running your own craft business, but there are some cons as well. Let’s look over a few of them before you get started:
- You’ll make money from your hobby.
- You will be getting paid to be creative.
- You can set your own hours.
- You have total control over what you sell and can change your inventory.
- You have almost endless opportunities to sell your products between online marketplaces and craft fairs.
- It can be more time consuming than you think.
- You might not be able to generate enough revenue with your product to cover the incidental expenses such as packaging and labels.
- You really need to know your tax laws, including whether or not you should gather sales tax from your customers.
- It can be tedious.
- You’re the only one to deal with an unhappy customer. To protect your profits, you’re going to have to decide on a return policy and stick to it.
So, there you have it! Everything you ever needed to know about what’s great and maybe not so great about running your own craft business.
Ready to take a big bite out of the handcrafted market?
I hope that this has helped you realize what product to sell, and maybe consider a few that you haven’t thought of yet.
Remember, you’re not limited to just one. Often successful crafters market several products along various platforms to achieve their highest profit margins. If you have the time to invest in research, why not? Doubling your market exposure can improve your chances of making enough profit to keep your business running.
Several of these items are complimentary, such as bath bombs, soap and beauty products, pins and bags, or photographs and frames. You might just get a few extra sales from clients who decide to one-stop-shop.
And if you have any other ideas for things to make and sell, let me know in the comments!