21 Ways to Make and Sell Crafts as Your Next Side Hustle
If you’re a little crafty but draw the line at dragging out the sewing machine, you’re in good company. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find crafts to make and sell. Mason jars and bath bombs aside, there are many clever ideas for easy crafts to make and sell that don’t require sewing skills or expensive materials.
The collection of DIY crafts we’ve listed below is perfect for beginners looking to make extra money selling crafts. And these DIY craft ideas can also become the cornerstone for starting your own craft business either at local fairs and festivals or through an online marketplace.
How to Start a Craft Business in 4 Easy Steps
Gathering crafts to make and sell can become more than a serious seasonal side hustle. The best craft ideas are big business. Follow these steps to transform a clever craft idea into a full-fledged craft business.
Step 1: Do Your Research
The key to success is to find profitable crafts that generate buzz at local craft fairs and sell online through an Etsy shop or your own website. So hit up a few craft fairs and surf the craft world online to discover trending crafts and home decor crafts.
Step 2: Do a Trial Run
You might have a great craft idea, but until you’ve purchased supplies and produced in bulk for a craft booth, you’ll have no idea if your DIY project is sustainable or capable of generating extra cash. Start small and see what’s workable and what you need to take back to the drawing board.
Find craft fairs and local festivals near you using the CraftMaster directory.
Step 3: Tweak Your Pricing
There’s no magic formula for the right pricing structure and craft fairs can be unpredictable. Consider not just supplies and other overhead to make and sell products — like shipping — but also labor costs. Build your recommended wage according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics into the profit margin.
Step 4: Consider Other Venues
Seasonal summer craft fairs and fall festivals are great opportunities to start selling crafts outside the traditional holiday season. But most craft businesses make their bread and butter by expanding into an online store where customers can purchase what you make and sell at their convenience.
What Supplies Do You Need for These DIY Crafts?
Like most DIY projects, the materials and tools you need to make and sell handmade items are supplies you might have around the house. Our list of crafts to make and sell specifically focuses on cool craft ideas that only require basic sewing skills, some upcycled materials and a glue gun.
In each category of handmade crafts, we’ve linked to craft tutorials that offer detailed directions, supply lists and, in some cases, step-by-step videos.
21 Easy Crafts to Make and Sell
Our list of crafts to make and sell is stuffed full of DIY ideas that make great gifts and are sure to fly off the shelves of a craft booth or the virtual space of your own store.
1. Cutting Board Creations
Who knew you could get so many craft ideas out of a simple cutting board? Dollar store cutting boards are so cheap they’re practically a dime a dozen, and they make charming springboards for a lot of DIY stuff, from tablet holders to photo displays.
2. Wall Art
Many DIY craft ideas fall under the umbrella of wall art, from macramé to vintage maps and upcycled clipboards. Hang your hat on one of these wall art DIY projects that transform minimal craft skills into maximum decor effect.
3. Handmade Bowls
If you think you need to throw clay on a pottery wheel to make a bowl, meet the next great gift idea. Whether you sell crafty DIY rope bowls, bowls out of resin or wood or even spin old records into bowls, you’ll have a unique take on a timeless container.
4. Tote Bags
One universal truth every adult knows is that you can never have too many tote bags. These simple craft items make clever DIY gifts, especially when you can find a way to customize the tote into something trendy.
5. Custom Coffee Mugs
Get a grip on more craft ideas with custom coffee mugs. Whether you use resin to create unique designs or break out the Cricut for some snarky coffee cups, custom mugs are one of the best crafts that sell at both craft fairs and online shops.
Another side hustle idea? Selling these unexpected things on eBay from instruction manuals to empty toilet paper rolls.
6. DIY Coasters
There never seems to be a coaster around when you need one, which is one reason custom coasters are an easy craft that makes great gift sets. If you don’t feel creative enough to come up with your own concept, coast along on one of these DIY ideas.
7. Mason Jar Crafts
Want to beat back crowds of farmhouse decor enthusiasts from your booth at the next craft fair? Grab a mason jar and get started on a gift idea like soap dispensers, sewing kits, nightlights, wall organizers and much more.
8. Essential Oil Blends and Candles
If you thought essential oils were a fad that would eventually burn out, think again. Essential oil blends, candles and other fragrant, handmade products are gift-giving gold. The trick is to create a unique spin, like candy-scented candles or horoscope-themed fragrance blends.
9. Homemade Pet Treats and Pet Toys
10. DIY Pallet Plaques and Signs
Want low-maintenance crafts to make and sell? Scour the classified ads and find some old pallets for free or cheap. With a little sandpaper and some paint, the weathered wood is the perfect palette for handcrafted home decor and holiday décor.
11. Handmade Beauty Products and Supplies
DIY beauty products usually require just a few ingredients and can be made in batches in your own kitchen. From soap to DIY bath bombs to custom nail polish colors, handmade beauty products are a profitable business.
Don’t buy … DIY these beauty products with simple recipes from ingredients in your own pantry.
12. Customized Keychains
Whether you make them from leather, cloth or even plastic, keychains never go out of style. Check out this handful of crafty ideas for making keychains that stand out from the crowd, including adding braids, pompoms or just pithy insights.
13. Resin Jewelry and Magnets
The last time you wandered a craft fair, you probably saw dozens of items made from resin. Resin is cheap and easy to work with and adapts well to all sorts of craft ideas, from resin jewelry to resin magnets that look like little glass stones.
14. Handmade and Upcycled Clothing
You don’t have to get out the sewing machine to sell handmade clothing. Take a time machine instead and offer upcycled clothes, like trendy tie-dye, ripped jeans with patches, cropped T-shirts or even distressed or dyed plaid shirts.
You can score great finds at the thrift shops with these tips from professional thrifters.
15. Paper Crafts
Take recycling to the next level with paper crafts. And no, we aren’t talking elaborate book sculptures. All you need is scissors, glue and some ingenuity to create paper flower bouquets, garlands, party decor, origami and lots more.
16. Christmas Ornaments and Holiday Decor
The saying that Christmas comes just once a year is technically true, but holiday decor is forever at craft fairs. Don’t hesitate to offer handmade holiday decorations and other seasonal crafts and watch the crowds congregate around your stall.
17. Upcycled Picture Frames
Swing by your local thrift store and scoop up some old picture frames. You can transform them into conversation pieces like chalkboard trays, garden planters or even jewelry organizers with just a little paint and some creativity.
18. DIY Gift Baskets and Boxes
The secret to great gift baskets or gift boxes is customizing the contents to reflect thoughtful gifting and charming insights. Small touches like the handmade bitters in a bespoke cocktail box or the apron in a Saturday morning pancake kit create DIY gift baskets that will sell like hotcakes.
19. Handmade Notecards and Notebooks
Grab some ink and get stamping. Handmade cards and notebooks are cheap and easy to make, plus you can use castoffs and spare paper supplies to pull together some truly amazing artistry, from pop-up cards to journals made from upcycled library cards.
20. Crafty Bookmarks
Speaking of making supplies stretch a long way, meet your new favorite craft idea. Whether you’re turning the page with yarn ball bookmarks or elaborate felt flower bookmarks, these DIY bookmarks will keep your craft business books in the red.
21. Trendy Throw Pillows
Did you know you can transform old throw pillows without breaking out a needle and thread? There are tons of ways people with no basic sewing skills can create throw pillows that cash in on home decor trends. Say hello to tassels!
Where to Sell Crafts Online
Once you’ve mastered the festival scene and the craft fair circuit, you can take your craft business online year-round. Even if starting your own e-commerce site seems like a stretch, platforms like Etsy offer crafters the chance to get paid for their creativity.
Kaz Weida is a senior staff writer at The Penny Hoarder covering saving money and budgeting. As a journalist, she has written about a wide array of topics including finance, health, politics, education and technology for the last decade.