Want to know where the best places are to buy or sell handmade crafts online?
The Design Trust has done all the hard work for you and selected the best and most popular online market places, portfolio sites and web shops for designers and makers. And we give you our honest opinion about each!
- From very small, niche online web shops to the big boys.
- From very ethical websites to extremely commercial ones.
- From online directories to online portfolio sites or membership organisations.
- Including sites selling crafts, design, textiles, stationery, homewares, giftware, art and fashion accessories; and sites promoting the services of designers, makers, and illustrators.
Here you will find our favourite places to buy and sell handmade crafts online.
Many of the online shops you will already know, but we have also included some lovely new and lesser-known gems in here, so check it out and explore. Either to sell your own handmade crafts online – maybe to buy some too!
Promoting or selling your crafts online with an established craft website, online market place or online directory is a fantastic way to increase your profile and generate sales throughout the year. You can find here a quick & simple overview of the 5 main options to sell craft & design online.
Please note that we always suggest that you do your own (thorough) research before you pay any organisation or sign a contract. Check if your product would be suitable for these websites, and check if your price point and ideal client visits and buys from the site. Make sure you understand the contract and how you can stop the contract if necessary.
Is your favourite online website not featured? Got any specific recommendations, updates or warnings (?) about any of the online places to sell handmade crafts, then do let us know in the comments below.
Aerende is an online shop selling products for the home, made in the UK by people facing social challenges. Aerende works with people who face barriers to employment and most commonly with organisations rather than individuals. This social enterprise website specialises in ethical interior products, including: beautiful prints, textiles, ceramics, candles and home accessories.
The word Aerende means ‘care’ in Olde English, and was chosen by the founder Emily Mathieson to reflect her commitment to heritage skills and British-made items, considerate business practice and interest in slow living.
Amazon Handmade is a specialist store area within the main Amazon website for invited artisans to sell their one-of-a-kind, handcrafted goods, home decorations, jewellery, stationery, fashion accessories and more.
Of course, Amazon has got a huge potential to reach millions of clients over the world and was seen by many as the big potential competitor to Etsy when they launched in October 2015. However, so far sales have been lower than expected and Amazon Handmade taking a fairly high commission on sales (which includes payment processing, marketing, seller support and fraud protection) is a major issue for new makers.
Although Amazon seems very strict on selling only handmade items within Amazon Handmade (hurray!), it might be that ‘handmade’ is simply not a category that people associate with Amazon, which is known for being cheap and fast? Plus of course, you will be directly competing with many other mass-produced and cheap products on the main site too.
Artfire is an American based online marketplace and craft and maker community where people from around the world come together to buy, sell and interact. Artfire has a very strong handmade ethos and lists handmade goods, vintage items, and craft supplies.
Artfire launched in 2008, so is one of the older online market places for handmade items. Unfortunately, it does feel a little that this site has had better times in terms of design and user-friendliness, and quality of sellers.
ArtsThread is the leading online portfolio site for new design graduates, operating from London but with a strong presence across Europe and the USA. It offers new creatives the opportunity to create an online portfolio for free, with specific keywords so that they can be found easily by potential design clients across the world, as well as recruitment agencies and other partners that ArtsThread works with. They also regularly organise events, competitions and have a creative jobs board. This is an ideal first online showcasing opportunity for new graduates and can help to drive traffic to your own website too.
Association of Illustrators
The AOI website has got a vibrant portfolio site with their illustrator and animation member’s work that they actively promote to agents and clients. The portfolios with up to 20 images of emerging and well-established illustrators can be found and searched on criteria such as subject, style, and technique. The potential client then contacts the AOI for further details.
The online portfolio option is part of their membership, which also includes free pricing, accountancy and portfolio advice, as well as exhibition opportunities.
Launched in 2010 with just 20 sellers by ASOS, Asos Marketplace is now the leading online platform for ambitious independent fashion, jewellery and accessory brands and vintage boutiques representing over 800 businesses from all over the globe. The target market for ASOS Marketplace is the fashion-loving twenty-somethings [their words!]. There is a low monthly charge plus a 20% commission on all sales.
Art In The Heart
Art in the Heart is a small but friendly and passionate online platform connecting potential customers with visual artists who create artworks and products in studios, workshops, and homes throughout the UK. Unique handcrafted pieces, paintings and gifts across many styles from contemporary to traditional, country to urban, refined to quirky. Art in the Heart is a keen supporter of artists and makers constantly seeking quality sellers to add to the community. There is an annual registration fee and a commission on each sale.
Aviarto is a UK based marketplace for designer makers and artists, providing a selling platform with no fees and zero commission. The platform sells jewellery, homewares, children’s clothes, art and more. Aviarto’s mission is to support artists living in the UK by providing them with an Etsy alternative that is free, and which connects them with handmade arts lovers across the globe.
Behance is the largest online portfolio website for designers, illustrators, fashion, photographers, and architects. It was launched in 2005 and is now owned by Adobe. It’s crucial that you include your specialisms as key words to get noticed by Creative Directors and other potential clients.
Bristol Market brings you the best makers and independent creatives in an online marketplace and in and Instagram market. Most of the makers featured are from Bristol and the South West, but the site also works with makers from further afield ‘because we are a welcoming bunch and talent has no borders’.
Contemporary Glass Society
The CGS website has got one of the largest directories for makers, artists, and organisations working in glass attracting more than 4,000 viewers each month. It has a very eclectic mix of work by members who total more than 1,000 creatives. Makers can be found easily by using search options including name, discipline, glass technique and region.
The site is fairly basic but it is very popular amongst buyers and commissioners of glass. Each member gets their own webpage, which is one of the benefits of the membership to the CGS. The main purpose is that glass artists and makers can easily be found with visitors then directed straight to the makers’ own websites.
Crafter’s Market UK is a new marketplace for selling and buying crafts in the UK with low selling fees and no up-front costs. It has been designed and developed by crafters for crafters and aims to create a community of likeminded makers helping each other over discussions with marketing and small business queries, all accompanied by a secure shopping platform for its customers. They also plant a tree for every sale from the website.
Crafts Council Directory
The Crafts Council Directory is a popular online resource for finding the best crafts people in the UK – both the most promising emerging makers as well as very well-known crafts people. It is a selected portfolio site where potential contemporary craft buyers can find makers across the UK based on criteria such as technique, discipline, materials, price, and location. The main purpose is that potential buyers and commissioners will be able to find you and then are directed to your own website.
The site looks beautiful with large images, although the amount of images is limited. The annual membership has two different levels with different benefits.
We would highly recommend the Crafts Council Directory to makers who create top quality contemporary crafts to improve your profile and drive traffic of buyers and collectors to your own website.
Crafty Fox Market Directory
Crafty Fox Market organise regular, very popular handmade craft fairs across London, and in 2016 they created a directory showcasing and selling the work of 100 of their exhibitors. It’s a great online resource for those looking for quirky and original handmade products and is actively promoted to stockists and press. Crafty Fox Market Directory members also get a series of membership benefits including an online listings page, exhibitor opportunities and discounts on photography, PR, and accountancy. There is a small one-off membership fee, and a small monthly fee to join.
Design Nation is the sister company of The Design Trust, as both organisations were originally set up by the design journalist Peta Levi MBE. It recently merged with Design Factory in the East Midlands and the The Hub in Sleaford, Lincolnshire which now has its own online shop
Design Nation is a membership organisation that selects, promotes, and exhibits the best designer makers in the UK. Their website shows the work of their current members working in ceramics, glass, furniture, lighting, wood, interior products, jewellery, metal, textiles, and paper. They regularly exhibit at interior design trade fair Decorex International and promote members to the press, trade buyers, commissioners and the general public interested in the best designer makers in the UK.
Eclectic Artisans is an online gallery, based in Australia, showcasing bespoke, handcrafted contemporary jewellery, from over 100 jewellers from across the world, carefully curated to represent a range showing the utmost quality, craftsmanship and design.
Etsy is the number one online market place for handmade products, with 2.5 million sellers (2019) worldwide with over 39.4 million buyers! It’s the best-known global marketplace for unique and creative goods from unique handmade products to vintage treasures. The price point tends to be below £50, and most buyers are still from the USA.
Joining and starting a shop is free, but there are three basic additional fees: a listing fee, a transaction fee, and a payment processing fee. Useful to mention is that Etsy sellers can also take part in regular regional meetups to meet other Etsy sellers, can get an Etsy shop review and also can take part in events, especially the Etsy Made Local events in the run up to Christmas.
FAB Market is the creation of Kitty Oakshott, owner of Upstairs Downstairs Interiors in Sherborne, Dorset. With the shop forced to close during the COVID pandemic, Kitty, thought it would be a great time to sort through her fabric collection and sell it to generate some income to help keep the business afloat during this uncertain time. Knowing there would be many others in the same situation, including workers and seamstresses who may have fallen through the gaps of the Government help for the self-employed, she came up with FAB Market – an online ‘one stop shop’ where both members of the public and those in the trade could buy and sell fabrics, wallpapers, and all kinds of other interior goodies.
Faire was founded in 2017 on the belief that the future of retail is local. Faire’s mission is to help independent entrepreneurs grow their business by linking with retailers. Faire is an online wholesale marketplace empowering small business owners and independent brands to buy and sell wholesale online.
Find a maker
Set up by Sarah James from Craft Festival, Find A Maker is a directory of some of the best designer makers, craft galleries and craft organisations established to connect Craft Festival’s audience with a carefully curated collection of the finest makers, regardless of where they are based. You can register your interest online at any time, and applications open three times a year.
Benefits include a listing with 200 words and eight images, and a direct link to your website, shop and workshops, Maker of the Week features, inclusion in the newsletter, and access to the Find a Maker Business School.
Folksy.com is one the oldest (founded by the lovely James Boardwell in 2008 in the beautiful Peak District) and friendliest online market places in the UK for handmade or designed work from over 3,000 independent designers and makers based across the UK. It has a fairly small but stable clientele and a very supportive handmade community. It very much embraces the ‘David not Goliath’ spirit when it comes to selling handmade products online!
Folksy report that around 85% of their customers are based in the UK with the rest scattered around the world. There is a per item listing fee or The Folksy Plus account enables unlimited free listings with a commission on sales.
Handmade in Britain online
Handmade in Britain has been organising fairs and events for many years to support and promote the best contemporary and traditional design and craft talent in the UK. Handmade in Britain also hosts an online marketplace with the work of more than 100 emerging and well-known designer-makers. No doubt that their online sellers will benefit from the association with the well-respected Handmade in Britain brand as well as the marketing to their large existing client base.
Applications are welcomed from UK-based designer makers and visual artists working in furniture, metal, sculpture, jewellery, ceramics, glass, textiles, print, woodwork, paper, print, and mixed media. There are no application or monthly fees, but a regular commission fee.
Just Artisan is an online marketplace based in the US for handmade goods. It features one-of-a-kind handmade art, housewares, clothing, and more from talented makers around the globe. The marketplace offers a secure shopping experience for buyers and an easy-to-use back-end dashboard for sellers with helpful tools for inventory management, storefront customisation, and data analytics.
Just Artisan was created to support artists with a transparent and low-cost platform. There is no fee to create an account, and Just Artisan only take a 7.5% commission on final sales.
Lisa Valentine Home
Lisa Valentine Home is the lifestyle website of Lisa Valentine – a curated online store of practical, beautiful & useful homeware. As beautiful as her Instagram time line! Full of gorgeous products and images of bags and baskets, kitchenware, candles, furniture, printed cards, woodware, gift boxes, and even some utility stuff too.
MADE.COM Talent Lab
Made.com is one of the fastest-growing contemporary, online furniture and interior retailers in the UK, and expanding into Europe too. Of course, you can try to sell your designs to their buyer’s team, or you can check out the Made.com Talent Lab instead!
Made.com Talent Lab is an innovative opportunity to introduce your design talent to the Made.com team and if selected to get voted for by the general public to get your designs manufactured and sold by Made.com in the future. Made.com will pay you the same royalty they pay their other designers. Talent Lab accepts designs throughout the year and shortlists the best ones every two months.
Made By Hand Online
Made by Hand Online is a well-curated website for high-end contemporary crafts in the UK, promoting and selling the work of more than 150 designer-makers, including the work of textile artist Dionne Swift, ceramicists Jill Shaddock and Katie Almond, and wood artist Sally Burnett. Creative products can be bought directly from the site and commissions are encouraged.
Madebyhandonline.com also brings together a community of selected makers from around the UK, celebrating their work and unique stories, providing useful resources for makers and the general public interested in crafts. There is an annual membership fee plus a commission on all sales and commissions.
Made It is Australia’s premier online buying and selling destination for handmade and independently created items, with 120,000 registered users. There are quarterly or annual commission plans depending on the number of items you wish to list. You can only sell with Made It if you live in Australia.
Not On The High Street
Not On The High Street or NOTHS is the UK’s number one curated online marketplace for gifts and in particular personalised creative products. Set up in 2006 by Holly Tucker and Sophie Cornish, the site now has more than 2.5m active customers (2019) purchasing innovative-but-affordable-and-trend-driven personalised gifts and homewares, jewellery, prints and art, gifts for babies and pets!
NOTHS has more than 5,000 creative business owners selling their products online – from small independent designer makers to designer-manufacturers and small boutique retailers. NOTHS suits more commercially-minded creatives who can produce quality and quantities at good prices and who are adaptable to new trends. Around 20 of their sellers have even become millionaires in the process.
There is a one-off joining fee to start selling on NOTHS, as well as a (fairly high) commission rate. Although NOTHS regularly promotes their ‘partners’ through weekly emails, beautiful seasonal catalogues, and even a TV campaign, most of the marketing will still need to be done by sellers themselves. Specific key words and stunning ‘on-brand’ images in this competitive market place are key – but NOTHS provides some training for their partners on all of this.
Numonday is a UK online marketplace based in Glasgow hosting the work of thousands of artists, makers and creatives. All products on Numonday have been handmade, designed or created by the seller. It does feel a little less sophisticated compared to larger handmade online marketplaces, but it does offer really good value for money.
Creating an account is easy and you can choose a monthly, six-monthly, or annual subscription plan. There are no listing fees, setup fees, commission fees or transaction fees. You pay only the subscription fee.
Odissa is an online marketplace for jewellery designer makers and outlets catering for the growth in fine handmade products. It features the best of thoughtfully curated modern creative workmanship. The platform was created by The Guild of Jewellery Designers as a place for creatives to offer workshops, showcase and sell their products, and help to maintain and grow the handmade industry.
Odissa accepts jewellery designers who are committed to handcrafting products from their own original designs.
Online Ceramics aims to bring the very best of contemporary British studio pottery into one dedicated online marketplace. The site features over 30 ceramicists, including Chris Keenan, Jack Doherty, and Walter Keeler. Every featured maker is visited in their studio to ensure standards are met, and every piece featured has been chosen to provide the best examples of that artist’s work. Potters must have worked professionally in ceramics for at least 10 years – most of those featured have well over 30 years’ experience, and are all members or fellows of the Craft Potters Association.
Pedddle is an online community for designer makers and market organisers. It provides an online listings service for designers, makers, and artists from around the UK with features on markets and selling events. The site enables visitors to discover makers online, with links to websites and where they can be seen and bought from at selling events / markets nearby.
Rebels Market is an online, curated marketplace of unique, edgy and rebellious products. Or as they say themselves ‘The World’s Number One Counter Culture Mega Store” attracting over 7 million ‘alternative’ clients! Rebels Market welcomes manufacturers and retailers who list high-quality art, jewellery, fashion, and homewares. Expect loads of quirky, boho, steam punk, rockabilly and over-the-top skulls, piercings, tattoos and dressing up. No setting up or monthly fees for your store, but a commission is taken on all sales.
Started in 2006 in Melbourne, Red Bubble now gives over 400,000 independent artists and designers across the world an online market place to sell their designs and illustrations on a wide variety of products to millions of fans. The idea is that creatives upload their art and designs, and Red Bubble handles all the printing (on over 60 products – think phone cases, tablet covers, t-shirts, face masks and duvet covers) and shipping across the world.
Creative on-demand online market places like Red Bubble can also help creatives to create some fairly cheap prototypes (!), but be aware that the commission paid is normally on the low side and only paid once a month. Also be aware that stealing ideas is extremely high from sites like this. Regularly delivery also takes about two weeks because designs are printed on demand and shipped from Australia.
Rockett St George
Rockett St George is the favourite online emporium of expressive homewares for interiors designers. Launched in 2007, Rockett St George scours the globe in search of unique, glamorous, eclectic, witty and rock ‘n’ roll home accessories, furniture, lighting, kitchenware, art, and gifts.
Society6 is a printing-on-demand service for creatives, especially illustrators, photographers and pattern designers, who upload and sell their designs on lifestyle products, from blankets to rug sacks and even shower curtains. Society6 produces and fulfills the order to a world-wide audience.
Be aware that the average commission on Society6 is only around 10% of the total sales price and list prices are set by Society6 depending on the type of product and size of the product. See RedBubble above for other opportunities and challenges when printing-on-demand.
Spoonflower is another printing-on-demand marketplace, specialising in custom-printed fabrics for interiors. More than 16,000 creatives sell their pattern designs and illustrations to be printed and turned into interior fabrics, wallpaper, clothes, bags, giftwrap, framed artwork etc.
Be aware that the average commission on Spoonflower is only 10% of the total sales price. See RedBubble above for other opportunities and challenges when printing-on-demand.
Support the Maker
This is a brand new online venture from the event organisers Craft in Focus. Support the Maker launches in 2021 and offers consumers the chance to find and buy work from some of the UK’s finest contemporary designer makers many of whom have taken part in the Craft in Focus shows.
The Future Kept
The Future Kept was set up by husband-and-wife team Jeska and Dean Hearne, purveyors of well-designed, durable, meticulously chosen items made and carefully sourced from independent designers, makers, artisans and entrepreneurs who are creating products that are better for our world. With beautiful images and stories.
Threadless started as a t-shirt company in Chicago in 2000, and is now an on-demand-printing service for creatives although they work slightly different; instead of an online store, Threadless organises weekly design competitions and the general public then votes which designs get printed.
Be aware that during sales periods the commission is as low as $1 per item sold. This seems more an opportunity for young people wanting to earn a little on the site than a professional opportunity. See RedBubble above for other opportunities and challenges when printing-on-demand.
Trouva is a wonderful find! It features the best small brick-and-mortar shops and boutiques with beautiful crafts, interior products and fashion. So only actual independent shops across the UK (plus Berlin!) are featured here. Trouva campaigns and supports small independent shops – and we at The Design Trust love that a lot because we love #buylocal campaigns. Expect very cool products, loads of lovely shop fronts plus wonderful behind-the-scenes-stories.
Wolf & Badger
Wolf & Badger was founded in 2010 by brothers Henry and George Graham, who are known for their shops in premium locations in Notting Hill, London, and Soho, New York. They stock over 600 of the world’s best independent fashion, jewellery, accessory, homeware, stationery, and beauty brands. Products have a clear personality and stand out.
Creative brands can apply to join the membership to sell at their shops as well as online, on an individually named web page, attracting over 200K visitors each month to the site. There is a commission of 35% and monthly fees might apply too.
Yoyo and Flo
Yoyo and Flo is a curated selection of design-led soft and wooden toys, gifts, and nursery decoration. Everything is chosen for its quality, originality, and sense of fun. They work with a small selection of brands, many of them French.
And there you have it! The Design Trust’s selection of the best places to buy and sell handmade crafts online, plus some suggestions for illustrators, designers, and photographers too. Did you find this list and honest overview useful? Then do share it with other creatives, or ‘like’ it. Did we miss your favourite online shop or boutique? Please let us know in the comments below.