Handmade to Sell Book Review and Giveaway

handmade to sell

I had the pleasure of reading the popular Handmade to Sell written by Kelly Rand, former editor of Crafting a Green World, a co-founder and executive director of Hello Craft, a director of the Summit of Awesome, and a Crafty Bastard organizer.

This easy to read but chock full of insightful facts and tips “bible” for handmade seller was an eye opener, especially someone like me who have been selling handmade goodies part-time for close to 5 years.

The “reality” of what (handmade) business should be like landed on my eyes as early as Chapter Two.

Do you want a hobby or a business? …If you want a successful business but can only dedicate the amount of time and attention you would to a hobby, your business will be less than successful and your self-esteem will tank.

Boy, if that wasn’t Ms. Reality slapping me in the face, I don’t know what is. Then she goes on to say, “That doesn’t mean you should stop yourself form starting simply because yo don’t have it all figured out at the moment. More than one successful crafter out there has at one time or another admitted, “I don’t know what I’m doing!”” Oh, thank goodness. Maybe she’ll tell us ‘how’ to figure things out in the book.

And she did.

The book covers everything from:

  • What types of business you should set up
  • How to price your work
  • How to keep records and accounting
  • How much inventory to keep in stock
  • Copyrights and Trademark – what’s the difference and why are they important
  • Is market research important and how to conduct it
  • How to develop a product line
  • What exactly is branding and how to create it
  • Should you wholesale?
  • The craft show Do’s and Don’ts

The book has a Resources section with listings of successful sellers, online marketplaces, craft fairs, brick-and-mortar shops, trade shows, and craft schools.

Here is a chat I had with Kelly on Google Hangout.

And she was gracious enough to offer a copy for a giveaway so you can read it for yourself. Please read the Terms and Conditions at the end.

P.S. If you can’t wait to find out if you won the giveaway and wants to buy the book, you can purchase Handmade to Sell from Amazon.

Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclaimer: I was given a copy of the book to review. This post contains affiliate links to Amazon.

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About Karen Lee

As a former Captain of Eco Etsy and one of the current leaders for the team, I am really excited to be hanging out with like minded team members to share ideas on how we can leave the least amount of carbon footprint.

I sell eco-handmade and vintage goodies in my Etsy shop and consult small business owners on Karen Lee Consulting where popular Etsy Starter Kit is sold. And as a retired Chiropractor, I share natural health news and green tips on drkarenslee.com. Check out my past posts on Eco Etsy!


  1. I found this book to be great! It is especially beneficial for new sellers!

  2. I could always use a few more tips for my shop! This sounds like a wonderful book!

  3. The most difficult part for me is keeping the books!

  4. I love creating something and having someone else want it enough to buy it!

  5. I most struggle with balancing the time between making, and promotion. Plus knowing whether to have a go at craft fairs or stick with Etsy only, as a selling venue.
    What do I like most, the fact people like my products enough to buy them, and the fact the business keeps me motivated to keep creating and trying new ideas.. I am a far happier person when I am making:)

  6. Looks like a great resource, the quote is rather thought provoking:)

  7. Looks like a fab book, like the thought provoking quote:) I do spend considerable more time than I would on a hobby but it is still a small amount of time:( The book looks like it would help me focus, and draw up a plan:)

  8. It’s always a pleasure when someone puts in writing information you can retrieve, highlight, return too. I’d enjoy this book and pass it on as well. Reuse!!

    I love the uniqueness of every custom individual Word Pouch:

  9. https://www.etsy.com/listing/65035213/raw-unrefined-shea-butter-8-oz-half?ref=sr_gallery_1&ga_search_query=teamecoetsy&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_search_type=all&ga_facet=teamecoetsy

    I’m in the market for more unprocessed shea butter for my apothecary!! :)

    The best thing about my handmade business is being my own boss, setting my own hours, FREEDOM!!

    • My biggest struggle would be the advertising side of things… I could handle way more business than what I’m getting but I just am not sure how to attract buyers!

  10. What a great opportunity to listen to a master! Nice job on the interview Karen.

  11. I love having my own business! It has afforded me an outlet for my creativity and a way to both be home with my young children and contribute to the family financially. My two biggest challenges so far are: 1) knowing when it is important to STOP working and just have fun and 2) figuring out what the next steps are to grow my business and how to implement them. Maybe this book would help!

    Etsy has been wonderful for me and I’ve enjoyed the communtiy spirit of the EcoEtsy team in particular. Here is an item from an Eco Etsy Seller whose work I really admire:
    Both clever and beautiful. Love it!

  12. What do I like best about having a handmade business? I find joy in making things that others need, enjoy and use. It’s still a bit surreal to me that my career enables, motivates and inspires my creativity on a daily basis.

  13. As a single mom with a little one at home 24/7, my biggest challenge to having a handmade business is finding enough time to create enough inventory for both craft shows and my Etsy shop.

  14. I was excited to see that there are over 1000 items for creative reuse listed with the #teamecoetsy tag! I am always partial to vintage materials, ephemera and notions, so I selected this listing as my favorite: http://www.etsy.com/listing/129613691/vintage-1950s-recycled-craft-magazines?ref=sr_gallery_4&ga_search_query=%23teamecoetsy&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_page=8&ga_search_type=supplies

  15. I love being able to use my creativity and inspiration to create sustainable apparel form home BUT
    I have no business training what so ever and am really overwhelmed in that area.
    This looks like a great resource..I am going to suggest that my library buy a copy!

  16. My favorite part of having a handmade business is creating my own schedule.

    The most difficult part is figuring keeping up with everything during the holiday season.

  17. http://www.etsy.com/listing/118006592/comic-book-envelopes-wedding-invitations

    Looks like a great book. I love these comic book wedding invitations.

  18. This would be a fabulous book to give to someone just starting out!!!

    • I learned a thing or two even though I’ve been on Etsy for 5 years since it talks about other opportunities than just Etsy. I find there is always a take away when I read books from gurus.