MISSION: GET CRAFTY
way to make $ with your DIYs
Many of us dream
of making lots of money from our handmade quilts,
mittens, handbags and more. But, let's face it, the idea
of listing them among the
millions of other items on
can be depressing. And by the time you do everything
necessary to start your own online store (securing your domain name, hiring
establishing a tax i.d. number, obtaining the certificate of
authority for resale...and that's just for starters), the caffeine buzz
will have already worn off.
But don't despair,
DIY divas. There's a new kind of online store and it
promises to help you turn your handcrafted projects into
a handful of cash. It's the DIY consignment store,
online shops that carry only handmade wares created by
artists like you.
these web stores make it easy to sell your one-of-a-kind
items by giving you a place to list them and handling
the whole money-changing transaction.
However, the similarities end there. Unlike
auction sites, these online DIY consignment stores come with a
built-in DIY-loving customer base. They also foster artistic
creativity (woe to those who try to list
mass-merchandised items). Also setting them apart is
their penchant for offering additional services for
sellers, for example, promotion for your product and
We've rounded up
the top three online DIY consignment shops where you can
start turning your handmade creations into cash today:
it: Robert Kalin, Chris Maguire, Haim Schoppik and
Jared Tarbell launched this site in 2005 from
Robert's Brooklyn apartment and built it into arguably
the largest online DIY consignment store around, with
total sales reaching nearly two million dollars so far.
in: Etsy.com sells virtually anything handmade, from computers to furniture. Jewelry is a strong seller and
art moves fast. Customers can also post requests and
take bids from sellers for custom items.
site features unique search options for buyers,
including being able to search for products by color,
geographical location or materials.
How it works:
Set up a username and password and you'll get your own
free shop on your own page at username.etsy.com. You
determine your own price. It costs $.10 to $.25 to
list an item. This store takes 3.5 % of the selling
price. You're responsible for shipping.
Who's behind it: Shana Victor launched Pixelgirlshop.com in February 2005,
and has grown from a one-woman show to a fresh and
formidable contender in the online consignment market,
processing thousands of sales of handmade
Specializes in: Handmade purses,
accessories, jewelry, hats, scarves and pet gear.
This is a one-stop shop that does the selling as well as
shipping, photography, site maintenance and even
gift-wrapping for you.
How it works: Shana works with the
sellers on a one-on-one basis to determine commission
it: Shannon Okey, an artist who specializes in textiles, created this web store to provide a collaborative space for artists of
varied disciplines to come together and provide the craft-buying community with a single place to obtain a variety
in: DIY kits are a big seller on this site. Also
popular are clothes, jewelry, paper crafts and
Shannon distributes a newsletter to promote her artists
and donates a portion of profits to charity, making this
a hip and socially conscious place
in cyberspace to start selling.
How it works:
After initial approval, the
agreement is a 60/40 split, with the
seller (you) keeping 60% of the selling price and the
web store (her) keeping the remaining 40%.
óJudy Ann Olsen