Crafting is great fun and the perfect way to unwind. Our budgets however, don’t always stretch to the materials, books and tools that we need, so here are five ways to craft the low cost way.
Fabric: If you need fabric for sewing then have a look around at your existing clothing, sheets, pillowcases or table cloths and see if you can re-purpose them. They can be used to make smaller items such as bags, cushion covers and pencil cases and the vintage vibe is really popular right now. You can also look in thrift stores and charity shops and see if you can pick up some low cost fabric by buying clothes and other items that you can upcycle. Remember to save any buttons and beads too, as these can always be reused.
Yarn: In line with the above, if you need yarn for knitting or crochet then you can also consider unpicking and reusing the wool from either your own items or those that you can purchase for low cost. As children grow out of knitted items you can reuse the yarn, even if it means turning it into a granny square blanket, so that you can incorporate all the different colors.
Tools: If you are looking for crafting tools then it’s often worth asking around friends and family to see if they have anything that they no longer use. People can often get the bug to try a new craft, buy the materials and tools, and then lose their motivation. You can also look out for larger items like sewing and knitting machines on places like eBay and in classified ads. A sewing machine for beginners can help you get started with some basic stuff. If you are buying something more complex though or electrical, just make sure it both works and is safe before you purchase.
Tutorials & Patterns: If you want some new ideas for crafts to try or to do with your kids, then there is a wealth of information available online. Browse the web for a variety of craft blogs where you can pick up lots of free tips and information. These are also great places to network with other crafters and to learn about local craft meet-ups, where you can both learn and pass on your own skills. Craft blogs are an invaluable source of free patterns and tutorials and a great way to learn more about thrifty crafting.
Books & Magazines: It’s great to read craft magazines and books, but the costs can start to add up. With books it is always worth checking out your local library, and if you are looking for a particular title, they can often order it in for you. With craft magazines, the lowest cost option is always to go for a subscription, rather than buying them off the shelf. You could even ask for an annual subscription for a birthday or Christmas present, and that way you get the pleasure of the gift all through the year. If you and any of your friends like crafting, then maybe one of you buys a craft title each, and then you circulate them amongst you, that way you get to read much more for a lower cost.
There you have five ways to save money while still enjoying crafting on a budget. If you really love the making process you could even consider selling some of your handmade items. That way you will not only be saving money but you will be making it too.
Alison Wood is passionate about crafts and creating online spaces where she can bring together makers and lovers of all things handmade.