A question that comes to mind for me every once in a while is, can I make money/a living selling hand knitted items through Etsy or at craft fairs?
I often feel like the answer to my question is "no" because so many items can be made overseas for very little money and sold cheaply here domestically through retailers within the USA. I often feel like there is no way to earn a living making and selling hand knitted items. How does one even compete with domestic retailers that can sell mass produced items from overseas at rock bottom prices?
I recently came across an online article on The Telegraph's website titled From £0 to £80,000: ‘How I make money from knitting faux taxidermy animal heads’ by Tara Evans. In the article, Tara Evans writes:
Turning a hobby into a business is a pipe dream for many of us. But Louise Walker never imagined that her passion for knitting could develop into a full-time job.
It started while she was studying commercial photography at university. She had the idea of knitting faux taxidermy head as props for a project she was working on. “I thought they would look cool in the photos”, said Ms Walker, 25.....
She said: “It started from a love of knitting. I knitted a few pieces and then used them in photoshoots, so the pictures were on my website.
“I found I was getting lots of attention and traffic to the site and that people were interested in buying the heads for themselves.”
Next, Molly Meg, an online children’s retailer with a large online following, asked if it could sell some of her pieces. From there she started to get commissions and after a few months she was asked about patterns.
She said: “My fingers were sore and all the knitting was beginning to take a toll on my hands. It started with a fox stole pattern for a knitting magazine and then I was contacted by a publishing company to write a book.”Louise Walker did go on to write and publish a book titled F&W Media David and Charles Books Faux Taxidermy Knits!
Click on the top most link to read the full story of Louise Walker's journey making money selling patterns, writing a book, and selling knitted faux taxidermy animal heads.
The moral of the story is that one can earn a living making hand knitted items!! It seems like the hand knitted items that one sells may need to be unique or at least stand out from the rest of the crowd... It also looks like knitting patterns sell well too.
Until my next post, happy crafting!!