25 Ways To Save On Craft Supplies

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25-ways-to-save-on-craft-suppliessource: Tax Credits

Hard economic times don’t mean you have to give up on your favorite craft. They just mean that you need to be more creative when acquiring supplies.

Here are 25 ways to help you save money on your next craft project.

1.  Use what you’ve got. Choose your next project based on what you already own. If you grow flowers in your backyard, consider making potpourri.  If you have yarn leftover from a previous project, do some knitting.

2. Ask for craft supplies as gifts. Use the holidays as a opportunity beef up your craft stash. Why chance getting another scarf, when you’d love some new scrapbooking papers?  Let folks know what you want, and you’ll probably get it.

3. Hang out at your public library. Besides craft books, magazines, how-to videos, and classes are all available at public libraries. Not every library has everything, so you may need to do some calling around.

4. Check out adult education classes. Given at local high schools in the evenings, these classes offer some great technical programs. Our nearby high school has classes in stained glass at incredibly cheap prices.

5. Buy in bulk. Scrapbooking paper is cheaper in reams, polymer clay is cheaper in multi-pack boxes and yarn is cheaper in larger skeins.

6. Buy only what you need. I frequently buy in anticipation of  future projects. Since many of those projects never get started, I have hundreds of dollars of unused materials, books, and equipment lying around.

7. Shop the sales. Large chain stores, like Joann’s and Michael’s, frequently have sales. Waiting for the sales can save you 20% or more. Sales are frequently publicized on websites and Facebook pages so keep an eye out.

8. Watch for coupons. My mom has and sister both use coupons from Michael’s on a regular basis and they save tons of money. Coupons are generally available in the newspaper or online.

9. Bid on auctions. I’ve gotten amazing deals on ebay over the years. I usually have the best luck when I make purchases from sellers who have lost interest in their craft and want to liquidate their unused supplies. Some of my best hauls of been boxes of mixed scrapbooking supplies that have become slightly dated.

10. Scour secondhand resources. Thrift shops, yard sales and flea markets are great sources for craft supplies. Our local Village Thrift usually has large bags of yarn for just a couple of dollars and I find loads of fabric at yard sales. In addition, you can find glassware for decoupage, old clothes for restyling and some amazing vintage craft books.

11. Re-source fabric. Used sheets, large-size skirts and  vintage curtains can be cut up and revamped into something new. An old dress can supply your with 1-2 yards of fabric, buttons or a zipper, shoulder pads and maybe even an old belt. The key is to always make something larger into something smaller.

12. Read used books. Thrift shops, Amazon Marketplace and libraries all have great vintage and current craft books for sale. Avoid the used book stores, as you will generally pay more.

13. Finish what you’ve started. I have three needlepoint projects in various stages of execution. I won’t be starting a new needlepoint project till all three have been completed.

14. Trade with friends. No longer need the two yards of black velvet? Find out if anyone in your quilting group would like to swap for a nice summery print.

15. Do some recycling. Knit with plarn, make baskets from old magazines and decoupage with candy wrappers.

16. Make your own craft supplies. Homemade cold porcelain is a cheap and easy to make. It also makes a wonderful modeling material.

17. Build your own craft equipment. I created a mold and deckle for paper making using nothing more than two dollar store picture frames, window screening and a heavy duty staple gun. I’ve also made my own weaving loom from cardboard and a knitting spool from a plastic medicine bottle.

18. Take advantage of the internet. The internet has an almost unlimited supply of free craft patterns, free printables and free videos.

19. Make projects that are intrinsically cheap. You’d have to work hard to break the budget on quilling and origami projects.

20. Check out the dollar store. Dollars are stocked with scrapbooking paper, rubber stamps. fancy scissors and great looking stickers. Definitely worth checking out!

21. Watch some television. If you spend money on cable anyway, check you DIY and HGTV. Both of these channels have excellent craft shows.

22. Check the clearance aisle. I once found some wonderful vellum envelopes, perfect for scrapbooking, in the clearance aisle in Target. On another occasion, I bought a necklace, and which I took apart for the beads.

23. Don’t forget Craig’s List and Freecycle. Today’s Craig’s List has a used sewing machine, new fabric and canvas all at great prices.

24. Purchase used craft kits. I’ve bought a used rock tumbler kit, wood burning kit, and bead weaving kit from my local thrift shop. In each case, the kits were dismantled and used for their individual parts.

25. Save everything. I save old clothes to turn into quilts, newspapers to turn into paper mache, and cereal boxes to turn into just about anything. Once in a while, when I start to overstock I either make a project or empty my stash.

Bonus Tip: Nature crafts are beautiful and practically free. Consider pressed wildflowers greeting cards, rock painting, leaf printing, seashell wind chimes and more.

Have any other money saving ideas? Send them to me in a comment and I’ll be happy to post them!

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