If you’re a crafty person who likes to work with their hands, you might consider turning your craft into a side hustle. It’s certainly a compelling idea; there’s a possibility you can make money doing something you genuinely love. And if you’re successful, you might even be able to turn it into a full-time job, or retire off the income.
The problem is, there are many potential crafts to choose from, and not all of them have the same potential as a side hustle. So how can you tell which crafts are most suited for a side hustle?
What Makes a Craft Ideal as a Side Hustle?
When considering different crafts for your new stream of income, these are some of the most important qualities to assess:
- Accessibility. Do you already know how to use this craft? If not, how accessible does the craft seem to be? Does it take years of study before you’re competent enough to sell your handiwork? Or can you get started in the span of an afternoon?
- Enjoyability. How much do you enjoy this craft? As the old saying goes, if you love what you’re doing, you’ll never work a day in your life. You’re going to enjoy this side hustle a lot more if it’s based around a craft that brings you joy. If you’re choosing a craft just because it’s profitable or because it’s in demand, you may end up burning out quicker.
- Profitability. You also need to consider the profitability of this craft. How much do materials cost you? How much does it cost you to keep this business operation? And how much are you able to charge for each product? This is a major concern with most crafts, since you may not be able to sell your work for much more than the cost of your raw materials.
- Demand. How many people are interested in this product? You may have a craft that yields high profit on a per item basis, but if there aren’t many people buying your items in the first place, you may not be able to turn it into a meaningful stream of revenue. The more consumer demand there is, the better.
- Competition. One downside of choosing a craft that’s both accessible and enjoyable is that there are probably thousands of people thinking and experiencing the same things you are. In other words, you’ll have a lot more competition. It pays to choose a craft that is less well traveled, so you have fewer competitors to contend with and you can get away with charging more.
The Best Crafts for a Side Hustle
These are some of the best crafts, when considering all the above qualities and more.
- Leatherworking. Handmade leather goods, like leather purses, are highly in demand because of how sleek they look and how durable they are. It’s not exactly easy to get into leatherworking, but it’s a skill you can learn even with no prior experience. Once you become more familiar with the basic fundamentals of leatherworking, you’ll be able to produce fine original works that can yield a significant profit for you.
- Woodworking. One of the biggest challenges of woodworking is purchasing or getting access to all the tools and equipment you need for proper construction. But once you get over that hurdle, you can start making incredible wood creations. Wood crafts are highly in demand and lucrative in nature, in part because there aren’t many people who practice this hobby regularly.
- Jewelry. Depending on what kind of jewelry you make, you might be able to charge a small fortune for each piece you bring to life. Just note that there are many types of jewelry worth making and selling, so it pays to distinguish yourself from the competition with something truly unique.
- Blown glass. Blown glass is expensive. It’s also practically impossible for amateurs to make. It’s a difficult craft to learn, and an even more difficult one to master, but if you can acquire these skills, you can sell your best work and make good money doing so.
- Metalworking. Just like blown glass, leatherworking, and woodworking, metalworking is hard to get into. It’s a difficult craft, and one that requires both patience and practice for success. Once you get a hang of the basics, however, you’ll be in a prime position to establish a secure stream of revenue.
- Sculptures. You can use a variety of mediums to make sculptures, including metal, clay, and even plastic, with the help of a 3D printer. 3D sculptures can be beautiful and serve many purposes, but they tend to be difficult to create – which is where you come in.
- Recycled art. Recycled art makes the list in large part because the materials are free. You can dumpster dive, pick up sticks in your backyard, or browse the curbs in your neighborhood on trash day to find the materials you need to make compelling creative pieces.
Almost any craft you pursue has the potential to help you make money. But it’s also clear that some crafts are better than others. Consider your priorities carefully when choosing the main craft for your next side hustle – and don’t hesitate to change things up if you want to see even better results.