45 Handmade Business Ideas You Can Start With Little Capital

Interested to start a handmade business but not quite sure what to start?

The good news is, there are so many opportunities to become an entrepreneur and build an innovative product/service in this line of work.

If you're looking to start your own handmade business, there are several low-capital options you can choose from.

We put a list together below of the most profitable handmade business ideas you can start today!

Here they are:

1. Start a quilt business ($9.6M/year)

Ross Lohr from Boston, Massachusetts, USA started Project Repat over 8 years ago, a quilt business.

  • Revenue: $800,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Boston, Massachusetts, USA

The Project Repat story starts in Nairobi, Kenya, where I was doing non-profit education work. After sitting in traffic for 2 hours, he discovered the cause of the jam: an overturned fruit and vegetable rickshaw pushed by a Kenyan man wearing a t-shirt that said “I Danced My Ass Off at Josh’s Bar Mitzvah”

Amazed by all the incredible t-shirts that get sold off and sent overseas by nonprofit and for-profit companies in America, we began working with Kenyan artisans to design new products out of castaway t-shirts, including bags, scarves, and re-fabricated t-shirts.

The next thing we knew, we had sold 2,000 quilts in a week and that put $80,000 in our bank account. At the time, that felt like the most money we would ever see in our lives. We were sleeping in our office and showering at the gym at that time.

project-repat-10mm-business-making-quilts-from-old-t-shirts

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Ross Lohr, on starting Project Repat ($800,000/month) full story ➜

2. Start a sewing and alteration business ($12K/year)

Saara Hafeez from New York, New York, USA started ALTRD over 2 years ago, a sewing and alteration business.

  • Revenue: $1,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: New York, New York, USA

We’ve been friends for awhile - we met right out of college in New York and stayed close even though we took fairly different professional paths.

Saara worked in the corporate world for a number of years before moving to Mexico where she launched a jewelry business aimed at rehabilitating sex trafficking survivors. Stephanie was a business consultant before going to law school and becoming a corporate lawyer; along the way, she launched an argan oil company that empowers women in Morocco.

these-two-founders-started-an-on-demand-clothing-alterations-startup

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Saara Hafeez, on starting ALTRD ($1,000/month) full story ➜

3. Start a woodworking business ($78K/year)

Sasha Weekes from Hunter River, Prince Edward Island, Canada started Timber Grove Studios over 3 years ago, a woodworking business.

  • Revenue: $6,500/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: Hunter River, Prince Edward Island, Canada

I was always the art kid growing up, so I naturally began my post secondary education by pursuing a degree in Fine Arts. I spent my summers refinishing furniture and doing photography and that’s how I got my feet wet with business, so by my second year, I was also pursuing a minor in Commerce.

I had never really done much woodworking at all but became a lot more interested in design and home decor during those years. After finishing my third year, I was itching to do something more practical than becoming a gallery artist, so I set my sights on furniture design and enrolled in a college cabinetmaking course instead. It really wasn’t where I had ever expected to end up, but it was sort of a natural progression and I’m so glad I did it!

I started making mountain shelves in the morning before class to sell on Facebook and Kijiji. It was intended to be a fun side project but they were so popular that I started my business shortly after graduating with the mountains as my first product.

how-i-took-my-woodworking-hobby-full-time-to-build-a-successful-brand

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Sasha Weekes, on starting Timber Grove Studios ($6,500/month) full story ➜

4. Start a photography business ($1.32M/year)

Kyle Nelson from Chico, California, USA started Results Imagery over 3 years ago, a photography business.

  • Revenue: $110,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 8
  • Location: Chico, California, USA

We both had previous experience in another start-up called Soul id which was a social media platform for action sports. We ran the marketing and media at that company which was a blast. After we left that company, we split directions. Eli got involved in the eCommerce industry by starting a brand called Winterial which he grew to hundreds of SKUs. Kyle headed in the media direction and started a commercial photography company where he worked with Fortune 500 companies and small businesses.

At this time Kyle wanted to be able to get back in the start-up world, grow a large brand and a team of like-minded creatives and innovators. So like any entrepreneur, he jumped on Google and started to search for media companies that were also technology-based companies as well. That is where the inspiration of starting a digital agency that solely focused on the media portion for brands and product companies came to life.

Culture is the centerpiece of a successful company. Creating a place for employees to come to work and enjoy what they do, the environment and who they work with will pay long term dividends.

how-we-started-a-45k-month-product-photography-and-video-company

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Kyle Nelson, on starting Results Imagery ($110,000/month) full story ➜

5. Start an embroidery business ($78K/year)

Cailey Golden from New York, New York, USA started The Patchsmith about 3 years ago, a embroidery business.

  • Revenue: $6,500/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: New York, New York, USA

I’ve been in the customization industry for over 10 years. I started with screen printing first. Eventually I was hired to work for the Yankees and was taught how to embroider caps. A company reached out to me for a production embroidery job and I accepted. I was taught how to run production but was left alone a lot. I ended up teaching myself a lot of different embroidery methods, it was also the place I made my first patch. I ended up creating patches for my supporters club of the local MLS team, NYCFC, and sold them for $7 each. I stopped after a few months and didn’t think about patches for awhile.

In 2017 I was going through a huge change in my life, a previous employer in the City attempted to permanently remove me from the industry, very unsuccessfully. I’d say it’s part of the reason why I’ve been able to be as successful as I have been so far. I spent months grasping at straws to come up with a business idea that I knew could do while keeping my mind busy while I was on a rollercoaster of repercussions from that employer.

I was in the bank one day after work and was sitting down with a representative, I did that a few months prior with the same guy and we spoke a bit about my career. This time he asked me if I was able to embroider patches for his fantasy football league called “Fight Club”. It was the first time anyone had ever asked for patches, I had no idea what to charge him but I knew I could definitely do it. I said yes and charged him $6 per patch for 25 of them. He was all too excited and agreed. I had no idea if I undercharged, overcharged or was right on the money but it was too easy. I was completely hooked.

how-i-m-turning-my-patch-embroidery-side-project-into-a-full-time-business

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Cailey Golden, on starting The Patchsmith ($6,500/month) full story ➜

6. Start a furniture business ($444K/year)

John Humphreys from Austin, Texas, USA started Humphreys almost 4 years ago, a furniture business.

  • Revenue: $37,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Austin, Texas, USA

Since I was a kid I have always had a sense of wonder about the world and the mechanisms behind it. Whether it be a jet engine or a windshield wiper-I have thought about the creative process behind these things since I was 10 years old.

I drew houses as a kid. My dad grew up in a home designed by a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, it was a solar home and it had an odd features. One example is, the entire back wall that was about 100 feet long and 15 feet high comprised of windows that all opened. In front, there were functioning levers that had fans which would draw airflow in and out.

Growing up I thought I wanted to be a pilot. I was described in high school by a classmate as “poetic” which I found offensive. I tried a hand in many things; managing a farm and pre-school, which were two businesses I inherited. This type of work wasn’t for me.

my-story-starting-a-400k-year-handcrafted-furniture-business

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John Humphreys, on starting Humphreys ($37,000/month) full story ➜

7. Start a clothing boutique ($120K/year)

Gia Paddock from Phoenix, Arizona, USA started Boutique Rye over 3 years ago, a clothing boutique.

  • Revenue: $10,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: Phoenix, Arizona, USA

My backstory has absolutely nothing to do with what I am doing now, but that is what makes us so unique. I went to college for education and became an elementary school teacher. I taught 4th grade for three years. However, I knew that was not meant to be my “forever” job.

Something I have always enjoyed was shopping. I mean what girl doesn’t have this as a hobby?! I had always thought it would be amazing to have my own boutique and get to wear new clothes almost every day.

I started thinking about this crazy idea when I got pregnant with my son, Riley. I knew I didn’t want to teach forever and this was my way out! During the summer I quit teaching, I got a job at a local boutique just working part-time, and it was here where the wheels starting turning for this idea. I saw how much I loved going into work every day and how much I enjoyed helping others pick out outfits for different occasions.

growing-a-clothing-boutique-to-10-000-month-in-6-months

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Gia Paddock, on starting Boutique Rye ($10,000/month) full story ➜

8. Start a blogging business ($60K/year)

Chhavi Agarwal from New Delhi, Delhi, India started Mrs Daaku Studio over 2 years ago, a blogging business.

  • Revenue: $5,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: New Delhi, Delhi, India

I am a licensed attorney in India and right after my master’s in law, I started working with a leading company as a lawyer. I worked there for about two years before I quit my job to become more location independent.

Choose a niche in whatever you start. It is critical for streamlining your efforts and make money.

My job paid me well but I worked 12 hours a day, I was exhausted by the end of each day, spent my weekends sleeping and I almost quit the things I liked to do - for example, sketching, yoga, traveling, etc.

how-this-couple-makes-5k-month-generating-content-about-ways-to-make-money-online

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Chhavi Agarwal, on starting Mrs Daaku Studio ($5,000/month) full story ➜

9. Start a jewelry making business ($48K/year)

Lindsay Ann Gottschall and Courtney Joy Bleier from Miami, Florida, USA started Ann + Joy ago, a jewelry making business.

  • Revenue: $4,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Miami, Florida, USA

Courtney Joy always wanted to be a teacher as a little girl. She used to pretend to teach in her childhood home basement on Long Island, New York. Growing up in an artistic family, she became a figurative and landscape artist and eventually attended art school. After college, she decided to merge her two childhood passions together and became an art teacher.

Lindsay Ann expressed herself through art in a different way. She was in the theater and went to school for drama in New York City. While pursuing her dream of acting, she also made beaded jewelry on the side. It quickly became a passion of hers and would help lead her down a new path in life.

Within our first 3 months, we sold over 100 orders, resulting in more than $3,000 in revenue. By the end of our first year, we had sold over 2,300 orders, resulting in more than $65,000.

how-we-started-a-4k-month-handmade-flower-and-resin-jewelry-business

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Lindsay Ann Gottschall and Courtney Joy Bleier, on starting Ann + Joy ($4,000/month) full story ➜

10. Become an author ($168K/year)

Nick Thacker from Colorado, USA started Nick Thacker almost 4 years ago, a author.

  • Revenue: $14,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Colorado, USA

I’ve always been a fanatic reader, specifically in the thriller genre. I discovered Dan Brown as a kid, then James Rollins, and I’ve always love action movies that combine adrenaline and history (think National Treasure, Indiana Jones, etc.).

I decided to write a book (my first was called The Golden Crystal, and it has been re-launched as The Atlantis Stone) when my grandfather passed away. He had always been a strong positive influence in my life, and he, my dad, and I often swapped paperbacks we liked. That first book was intended as a gift for my dad for Christmas, and it was going to be the only one I ever wrote -- just to see if I could do it.

I had no idea what I was doing (arguably, I still don’t…). I just thought it would be fun to combine technology with the discovery of Atlantis… in some way. When I got started, I was naive enough to think that books simply happen, but the book very quickly got the best of me. I took a six-month break and consumed as much as I could on the subject of the craft of writing fiction. I’d never really written anything before, so it was an eye-opening experience to learn about structure, plot tropes, character development, and everything else that goes into a good, cohesive story.

how-i-generate-10k-month-as-an-indie-writer

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Nick Thacker, on starting Nick Thacker ($14,000/month) full story ➜

11. Start a penny portrait business ($15K/year)

Maury McCoy from Austin, Texas, USA started Penny Portrait over 12 years ago, a penny portrait business.

  • Revenue: $1,250/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Austin, Texas, USA

I was surfing the internet and was inspired by a story about a father and son who created a giant portrait of Abraham Lincoln out of $25 worth of dark/light pennies. I thought it was a fantastic concept and thought maybe other people would like to do the same thing. The idea of making Lincoln out of little Lincoln’s thoroughly amused me.

I have a background as a graphic designer/animator so I was able to create a proof of concept in Photoshop rather quickly. I added a few additional shades (4 total) which provided detail to the image while also allowing me to shrink it to a more manageable size without losing the illusion. After several iterations, (actually, many, many iterations...) I came up with a version that I was happy with but only used 846 cents.

starting-a-business-selling-portraits-made-of-pennies

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Maury McCoy, on starting Penny Portrait ($1,250/month) full story ➜

12. Start a pet accessories business ($0/year)

Yuri from Chernihivska municipal council, Chernihiv Oblast, Ukraine started COLLAR almost 26 years ago, a pet accessories business.

  • Revenue: $0/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 500
  • Location: Chernihivska municipal council, Chernihiv Oblast, Ukraine

When I was a teenager, I adopted my first puppy. But in 1995 in my native city, there were no pet accessories manufacturers. My father and I, had to make the collar from a uniform belt by myself. Later, when I walked my dog, my friends came to ask where I got such a collar and ordered some similar for their pets. That’s how the story of COLLAR company started.

With the development of the company I understood that looking at the foreign ideas may work great for the Ukrainian market, but to conquer the international one I had to make something entirely new. Then the motto of the company - “Innovation only” - was born. Now every idea that is proposed in COLLAR company shall pass the simple test: is it really innovative? Is it better than anything that already exists in the market? Does it fill the still empty niche? If the answer is “yes” the idea turns into a project and then into a product.

Now COLLAR company has grown from a small flat in Chernihiv to an international manufacturer with more than 500 employees and offices all over the globe. The products we invent and produce are well-known in European, Asian and American pet stores, but we still do our best to fascinate the customers even more with new innovations.

on-starting-a-pet-goods-company-that-grew-to-500-employees-with-offices-in-6-countries

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Yuri, on starting COLLAR ($0/month) full story ➜

13. Start a graphic designing business

Examples of a successful graphic designing business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a graphic designing business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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14. Start a hair accessories company

Examples of a successful hair accessories company:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a hair accessories company:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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15. Start a scarf making business

Examples of a successful scarf making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a scarf making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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16. Start a t-shirt designer business

Examples of a successful t-shirt designer business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a t-shirt designer business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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17. Start an onine gift shop operating business

Examples of a successful onine gift shop operating business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a onine gift shop operating business:

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18. Start a greeting cards business

Examples of a successful greeting cards business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a greeting cards business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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19. Start a tie dye artistry business

Examples of a successful tie dye artistry business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a tie dye artistry business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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20. Start a hat designing business

Examples of a successful hat designing business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a hat designing business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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21. Start an online course creation business

Examples of a successful online course creation business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a online course creation business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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22. Start a candle making business

Examples of a successful candle making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a candle making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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23. Start a handbag business

Examples of a successful handbag business:

24. Start a painting business

Examples of a successful painting business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a painting business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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25. Become a sculptor

Examples of a successful sculptor:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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26. Start a t-shirt customization business

Examples of a successful t-shirt customization business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a t-shirt customization business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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27. Start a toiletries making business

Examples of a successful toiletries making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a toiletries making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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28. Start a knitter/crocheter business

Examples of a successful knitter/crocheter business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a knitter/crocheter business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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29. Become a toy maker

Examples of a successful toy maker:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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30. Start a picture frame making business

Examples of a successful picture frame making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a picture frame making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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31. Start a soap making business

Examples of a successful soap making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a soap making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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32. Start a glass painiting business

Examples of a successful glass painiting business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a glass painiting business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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33. Start a stencil artistry business

Examples of a successful stencil artistry business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a stencil artistry business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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34. Start a mason jars business

Examples of a successful mason jars business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a mason jars business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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35. Become a stamp maker

Examples of a successful stamp maker:

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36. Start a decor making parties business

Examples of a successful decor making parties business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a decor making parties business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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37. Start a book binding business

Examples of a successful book binding business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a book binding business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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38. Start a yarn spinning business

Examples of a successful yarn spinning business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a yarn spinning business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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39. Start a scrapbooker business

Examples of a successful scrapbooker business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a scrapbooker business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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40. Start a gift baskets business

Examples of a successful gift baskets business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a gift baskets business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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41. Start a bead making business

Examples of a successful bead making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a bead making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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42. Start a fiber artistry business

Examples of a successful fiber artistry business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a fiber artistry business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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43. Start a christmas ornaments business

Examples of a successful christmas ornaments business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a christmas ornaments business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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44. Become a basket weaver

Examples of a successful basket weaver:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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45. Start a candy making business

Examples of a successful candy making business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a candy making business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

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Starter Story,   Founder of Starter Story

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