Hey y’all, gather ’round for some crafty goodness! If you’re a fellow crafting enthusiast like me, always on the lookout for unique and affordable crafts to make and sell, then you’re in the right place.
From turning trash into treasure to adding a touch of whimsy to everyday items, we’re about to unveil a whole world of creativity that’ll make your heart sing.
So buckle up, folks, ’cause this blog post is gonna take you on an exciting crafting journey filled with surprises, smiles, and plenty of inspiration. Can’t wait to get started! Let’s dive in and discover the magic of crafting on a budget.
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Fuseworks FW849 Beginner’s Microwave Kiln
In this video, Cindy from Upcycled Design Lab crafts using recycled and repurposed materials to give you ideas on ways to make and create more economically and ecologically.
But today, she’s doing something a little different. She thought she would step away from the tutorials for a moment and share her five top selling items that she’s sold at different venues.
She does want to mention that she is not a seasoned or terribly serious craft seller. She focuses more on the tutorials and the videos, but she has attended a couple of craft shows, sold some things online, and also sold in a consignment shop.
So she thought she would just kind of highlight her top sellers for you. Craft shows, which you know if you’ve ever done one take a lot of preparation to get ready for. They’re kind of a roller coaster ride. If you’re interested in more information on actually attending craft shows and preparing for a craft show, she did a whole series on the first craft show that she attended.
And then she did a quick recap video of her second craft show, which she will also link to. She also wants to mention that she’s not going to be talking a lot about costing items or how much time the items take because that is just such a nuanced kind of thing.
She did do a video on it in her first craft show series so you can check out more about how she did some of her costing if you’d like to look into that a little further. She will let you know at the bottom of the screen what she sold her items for, but that’s just kind of a baseline because like she said, it’s a very personal and nuanced thing to price your items.
As she mentioned, she’s going to be sharing her five top-selling items, but stay tuned to the end because she’s also going to share five more items that she thinks could be good to make and sell. Her first item is fused glass jewelry.
To make these items, she did use a little Fuse Works Microwave Kiln. It’s just two little pieces you put it in the microwave. It’s got a fairly small working surface, so you can only fuse really small items.
This kit comes with most of the things you need, some heat-resistant gloves, you might also want a bottle cutter, and then she has these little wheel Cutters that she uses with to make her jewelry. So this is a great tool to get started if you’re not familiar with fusing glass. It is fairly quick to do the fusing.
The one downside is it takes quite a while, you have to let the Kiln cool down for at least an hour before you take the piece out. So you do have to plan a lot of time between projects unless you have more than one Kiln.
Her first piece is a really simple shape. It’s just made from some green wine bottle glass and put on a piece of cording and it’s made for hanging around your neck and then just putting your glasses on. It’s a little bit rudimentary and most of the things that she’s made in her Kiln are kind of rudimentary shapes.
But she thinks the glass is really pretty and you can get some good results. This is a pretty simple little project. You can fuse these tiny little beads by just putting little tiny shards in your microwave Kiln and when they fuse, they just kind of turn into half-moon shapes.
They’re flat on the bottom but they have nice little rounded shapes and these were made by just gluing the pieces to a piece of I think this was a plastic milk carton or something like that. Here’s another version of that where she just coiled up some wire and put the little fused pieces in the middle. You can also do some other fun things though.
You can do some Impressions. Hopefully, you can see that she kind of highlighted it with some alcohol ink, but you can cut out shapes from the fusing paper and make impressions in the glass when you’re fusing it. So that’s just another fun thing that you can do with it.
Here’s a kind of mosaic earring set and pendant that she made. And one other thing you can do, again they are sort of rudimentary when they come out, but you can make beads that you can actually string onto bracelets or necklaces so this is just a fun tool to have in your Arsenal, especially if you’re a jewelry seller.
You might want to give this glass fusing a try. Her next item is the dragonfly Christmas ornaments and these did pretty well at her first craft show. They’re very low-cost to make, they don’t take any really special tools or anything.
The wings are made out of an aluminum can and she punched the holes with a thumbtack. The beads are made out of rolled magazine paper and then she even salvaged the wire so the raw material costs are very, very low.
The labor is pretty high, she will say. But it was fun to sell these, they’re kind of cute to hang on the tree or just set on a table somewhere. And you don’t have to necessarily use them for Christmas, they could be kind of anytime. She did also do a new version of them which she thinks is even better.
These beads are actually made out of aluminum can as well, which adds a ton of time to the labor cost. But she thinks they turn out really pretty. And to save time on the labor, you could certainly use purchased beads or salvaged beads from old jewelry. So that’s just an idea on how to make these a little less time-consuming, but she thinks they turned out really pretty.
If you’re interested in the new version of the dragonfly, she’s going to be doing that tutorial next and she will link to the original tutorial in the description box. Project number three are her Tin Can ornaments. They’re made from flattened and rusted pieces of a tin can and they also require just very simple tools.
You need a good pair of tin snips and a hammer. So, the raw material costs are very low. She thinks she used some Dollar Tree twine to hang them. She used a little paint, some sequins, and glitter.
So they were and they are a little time-consuming to cut out and you do want to be careful because you are working with the tin cans and you do have some sharp edges.
They’re not terrible once you hammer them out, but you want to make sure you don’t have any burrs or anything on them. And these, she has sold some online and at her first craft show. Here’s just a quick bonus tip for you on things to sell.
She sold these at her first craft show. They’re just, she called them grab bags and basically, she just put a bunch of stuff in here that she kind of wanted to get rid of.
So she’s got empty Altoid tins, some little plastic fish, a watch without the watch part in it anymore. A couple of those. If you have a big craft stash and you’re trying, there are some things that maybe you’re never going to use, this might be an idea for that as well. You could put some of your extra craft supplies that you don’t use into some little grab bags and try to get rid of those at some of the craft shows.
You’re not going to make your money back, but it was a good way to draw people in and it kind of caught their attention for five dollars. So that’s just a little bonus idea for you. So it’s time for her top two sellers and the runner-up is her Tin Can earrings.
She knows fancy tools required. You just need some tin snips, a hammer. She used a flathead screwdriver and some needle-nose pliers to do some of the shaping. But all of these tools are very affordable. She sold a lot of these at her first craft show and the fun thing is that you can just make lots of different sizes and play around with shaping them differently.
She also added a little bit of engraving to some of hers. This is just to show you that these are all the same shape, but in some cases, she folded them. In this case, she left them flat. And on these, she kind of curved the pieces. These were shaped with her needle-nose pliers.
She just used kind of a teardrop shape and then rolled it into more of a cone. These are the earrings that she shaped with her flat head screwdriver. She just used it kind of to engrave the lines in there and shape the earring into more of a leaf shape. This was one of the most popular shapes and she will say that when she doubled up the layers on them, they sold better.
This was the other shape that was quite popular and people definitely liked when she put two pieces together. All right, it’s time for her number one seller and hands down, it is these watch face earrings. She sold them really well at her first craft show.
She’s sold them at a little pop-up recycle show, she sold them at the consignment shop, and she’s also sold quite a few on eBay as well. You don’t need a lot of fancy tools, you need a few jewelry making tools, and you do need to have something that you can open watches with. And of course, you need to find quite a few watches.
The best place she’s found is to look for watches on eBay and just search for watch lots. If you’re interested in doing this project, she hasn’t looked recently, but historically that is where she’s found the most watches.
You do need to be a little careful about how much you’re paying for them, so you want to consider that into your cost. But you could also try estate sales. She’s
found them in thrift stores. If you keep your eye out, you can find a lot of different watches and they are just fun because they come in such pretty colors and some fun variety of sizes. It’s fun to kind of match them up into mismatched sets.
Her first bonus item is these little hoop earrings. They’re very simple and they’re made just using the top little ring around the top of aluminum cans. But you don’t have to just leave them plain, you can kind of jazz them up if you want to.
Here’s a pair that she added some beads and dangles to. This one she wrapped beads around the ring. These were wrapped with some cording. And just for fun, she doubled up on some. These are very silly, but she added some glitter and a little Hello Kitty charm to make these. So you can do all kinds of things with them once you have the basic ring.
Next up are these aluminum can garden markers. They’re just embossed with the names of the plants on them and then hooked onto some stakes with some rings.
The only thing she will say is that if you do make these with the rings, you probably want to find some stainless steel rings because hers rusted. These are markers that she’s had in her yard all summer, so they do get a little wear and tear.
But she thinks they turned out kind of cute and you could sell them in little sets of four with popular herb names in them, or you could sell them singly. So that’s another idea you could try.
This next idea is a way to take some inexpensive Dollar Tree notebooks in any size you want and add some embossed aluminum can covers to them. And if you want to do bigger covers, you can piece them together. So that’s just another fun idea.
Her little wine cork reindeer family is a fun project if you have a lot of extra wine corks. She just thought they turned out really cute. They are a little bit fragile, so they might be tough to ship, but they could be fun for a Christmas show.
Last up are some different takes she has on making jewelry from aluminum cans. This first one is an embossed version, and she gets a lot of questions about the rough edges of the aluminum, but these are finished edges, so they’re very lightweight and they are not sharp at all. You could either sell them as sets or as single items.
This first one is a giant sort of pendant bead made from the bottoms of the aluminum can, and then it’s got alcohol ink on it for the color. These two items are just some earrings, and you can also do bracelets made with beads that are made from the aluminum can as well.
And if you’re going to do that, you’re definitely going to want a bead roller. She has this very inexpensive one that she uses. So those are just some fun ways to use aluminum cans to make some different jewelry styles.