Using “Junk” for Craft Business Treasure

by Jennifer

Jill Smith, of Carlisle, Pennsylvania, turns old “junk” – broken watches, jewelry, silverware, old buttons, and more – into wearable art that she sells at craft shows and some local gift shops and antique stores. And, she is a great inspiration for those of you who are wondering whether or not you have what it takes to start a craft business.

Jill is a retired social services worker and grandmother of three, and she started her craft business to get enough money to put a banister on her porch. Seems she had wanted a banister for quite some time, but the cost of a new banister wasn’t in her budget. Her husband told her if she could find the money for the materials, he would build it.

So, she started by cleaning out her basement for a yard sale, but was left with a bunch of unsalable junk. She decided to make something from the junk, so she took apart the broken watches, jewelry, silverware, and old buttons and created some unique pins from the recycled parts. After only 7 or 8 craft fairs, she had enough for her new banister.


Jill came up with a great idea… Use some of your existing materials and recycle them into a new, completely unique piece for your craft business. Talk about lowering the cost of your craft business supplies! For the most part, you can start with friends and family who will be more than happy to get rid of their old and damaged treasures. How many of us have a bunch of old watches and jewelry that is busted, but just can’t seem to throw away? Then, you can comb yard sales for dirt cheap supplies.

And, in your craft business marketing, you can push the recycled angle. Everyone today has a much better appreciation for the environment, and recycled crafts are a great seller because they are unique and environmentally friendly.

Check out the article from the Carlisle Sentinel, and try to come up with some unique craft ideas of your own!

Happy Crafting!
Jennifer

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{ 2 comments }

RecycleCindy December 7, 2007 at 3:17 pm

Crafting with trash or recycled materials is so fun. I use plastic bags, vcr tape, cassette tape, and other “junk” to crochet projects. If anyone needs patterns for these types of crafts, please come over for a visit. Everything is free and I love to share and exchange recycled crafts ideas.

THAT Painter Lady March 12, 2008 at 4:24 pm

A few years ago… when recycled was the new catch phrase… I started a side craft business called ReCreations. I started making earrings out of paper egg cartons (actually paper mache’ using a blender) and then went into making pins with old jewelry and buttons. I had several other products that used something that could be considered recycled.

It was a hit for several years… and the best part… the supplies were nearly free! Think green! Recycling is just another part of the Green movement that will be getting bigger and bigger.

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