When starting a craft business one of the things that can make or break it is your bottom line. Being able to make your items as cheaply (without compromising on quality) as possible is so important, so finding wholesale craft supplies is often on the minds of newbie craft business owners.
Now obviously finding the best places to get your supplies will depend largely on your craft and what you’re making. This is a general post but I hope you still find it helpful.
When to start investigating craft suppliers and wholesalers
It can be tempting when in the first rush of excitement about a new business to rush in and buy all sorts of items in bulk. While this may be the right way to go for you, for others it might be way too much of an investment at the beginning of their journey.
I’d say that when you’re starting out it’s a really great idea to see the range of places that you can get supplies from and make a note of them, even if you’re not ready to buy yet. Always ask yourself these questions:
- Is it cheaper to buy in bulk? (often it isn’t!)
- Does it make a big difference to the base price of your product – is it worth it?
- Does the price include VAT
- Is postage included
- If coming from abroad make sure to include possible import tax and duties
- Can you store the amount you’ll need to buy
While starting out and testing your product ideas, don’t be afraid to buy slightly more expensive materials in smaller quantities. If you do this and can still make a profit on what you’re making while testing the water and the market for your items, you’ll do even better when you start to scale and buy your supplies in bulk. You’ll also know that you’ll be less likely to be left with large amounts of supplies if your products don’t sell as well as expected.
Best places to get wholesale craft supplies
In no particular order, here’s some places to look for craft supplies, tools and packaging.
eBay is great to get items in small quantities all the way up to wholesale bulk orders. From beads to paper, to tools and even packaging supplies, you’ll often find good deals here. Always check which country things are coming from though, especially if you’re in a rush.
Etsy can be worth checking out as well as many suppliers sell on there. Just search for what you’re after or have a browse in the craft supplies category.
Home of children’s arts and craft supplies but they can also be a great place to look for materials that adults use too, for example porcelain pens, plain wooden boxes to decorate, blank mugs. Loads to see here – don’t lose yourself!
Hobbycraft is good for getting ideas and trying out new crafts – so if you have a new idea you want to explore, have a look for small kits and starter packs here.
Wholesale supplier to the education market and to crafters with many discounts for buying in bulk.
Homecrafts have a range of arts and crafts supplies for anyone serious about different crafts. There is so much on offer here – definitely worth a look and free delivery over £40.
Buy and sell groups can be a great place to pick up some bargains where people are destashing what they have bought in the past – you can capitalise on others who bought too much in bulk!
You can also use Facebook groups to chat with other makers and to find where they get their supplies, although some might not be willing to share, depending on the group you might be lucky. You might also find that groups for specific crafts will have suppliers as members.