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Grow Your Handmade Business: How to Envision, Develop, and Sustain a Successful Creative Business

3.8  ·  Rating details ·  265 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
Are you ready to make a living from your craft? Applying her trademark "you-can-do-it" coaching style to the nuts and bolts of business planning, Kari Chapin covers all of the issues involved in turning your creative hobby into a successful business--from mapping out a business plan to expanding production and distribution, finding funding, and addressing legal matters. Wi ...more
ebook, 272 pages
Published July 4th 2012 by Storey Publishing (first published July 3rd 2012)
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N.
Jun 17, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Properly speaking, this book should have been called "Sprout Your Handmade Business." It's about building your business from the pre-conceptual stage, not about growing an existing business. The first half is entirely "What do I want to do? How do I think out my plan?"; half thought exercise and half inspirational talk. Not really for me, so I skipped it.

Part Two touched on keeping accounts, registering your business, taxes, overhead, etc. This was why I picked up the book. Only, the content was
...more
Individualfrog
This book isn't very deep, and it says pretty much what any old book or website about entrepreneurship says. I found it randomly in my teeny tiny local library and added it to the pile of DVDs I was taking out, along with a book on Bay Area architecture. It has that relentless, aimless, shallow blogger/YouTube channel cheeriness, "Hey guys, what's up, so I'm really excited about today's video because it's all about taxes! Taxes are totally important and can really make or break your business. So ...more
Ashley Coons
As an Etsy seller, I was hoping that it would give me tips on marketing and growing my business. However this book was about how to start a business and had nothing to do with handmade at all, so I felt the title was misleading. The only difference between this book and my college text books was this one used pretty font and pictures. It's a great reference for starting a business but not for what I wanted it for.
Lauren Albrecht
May 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was so incredibly helpful for a very un-business minded girl to step foot into the business world. This book enabled me to take very practical steps in kick-starting my business and left me much less intimidated than when I started!
Katie
Feb 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Helpful, clear and concise.
Samantha
There is a lot of good stuff in here- lots of things I personally NEVER would have considered. Some such items on my NEW agenda: hiring and guarding oneself with an accountant and attorney and to begin preparing for PR. There are a lot if great references as well... I believe I've signed up for 3 newsletters through my progression of the book.

I'm at the seedling stage of my small creative business. The big things hovering over me right now are setting up my Business Plan and refining my brand. T
...more
CJ
Dec 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-books
As the owner of a small (very small) business, I’ve often wished that I had a friend who could hold my hand and help me with all the details necessary to making that business successful. Kari Chapin does that admirably with this little book. She’s walked these hallways and she very generously put what she learned into a really convenient package.

Grow Your Handmade Business is split into two parts – figuring out what your dream is and figuring out how to make it a reality. Chapin has questions a
...more
Ksenija
A good source for anyone who's thinking of starting a business, not so much for the people who are already in the midst of things Also, it is exclusively directed towards the USA readers, as many (or even most) of legal things are quite different in other countries. It is a good starting source for inspiration as it gives a thorough overview to what exactly running a business means nowadays, and that is something the so called 'creative' people often neglect or even worse, ignore. About one four ...more
Larissa
Feb 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you Kari Chapin for writing a business book for people who are starting small and are creative! I learned tons from this book and I am fully intending to read "The Handmade Marketplace" as well.

Mostly what I loved about this book was how it broke things down into simple steps. For example, the "intentions, goals, tasks" model. Instead of focusing on a huge goal, instead you have an Intention and then goals under that, and then very simple tasks under that. I have a notebook with goals out
...more
AJ
Jul 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I definitely recommend this book for anyone who is considering letting their creative ideas blossom into something more. I began looking through this book a few months ago, and since then, Kari's advice and wisdom has helped me really shape my endeavors into a business!

Kari provides insight on income, on websites, and even on all the terms and confusing things like taxes with which I had no idea where to even begin.

Definitely the book that got me started on my creative business. Now I'm going
...more
Ethan Jones
Nov 06, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Grow Your Handmade Business by Kari Chapin taught me an immense amount about business but I also found myself left with as many questions as answers after reading this book. Clearly this book is not the be-all and end-all of business books, but I think it has something to offer for most people interested in business. While somewhat juvenile in sections and overly repetitive in others, Chapin does a good job of outlining the basics of business and how to grow one from the point of view of an arti ...more
Debbie
Very useful advice on how to grow and develop personally as your business flourishes. Good guidance on the ins and outs of selling handcrafted products and how to use the social media to your advantage. I need to go back through it and do the exercises a few months down the line to see if any of my plans for world domination need tweaking. ;)
Saija
Aug 20, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't find it to be as useful as its predecessor was, but I would still recommend it nonetheless! As a small business owner starting out you need all the information you can get, and this book is still a good tool.

(Her first book though, was absolutely fantastic, and I recommend having read that one first before this one)
Heidi
Kari writes about developing a business plan for your creative business in a very approachable manner. Her insights into how creative brains work (and resist work) was spot-on for me. I loved that she included several other artists and makers and their experiences and advice added so much to the book. A must-read for anyone trying to make a creative business (like mine!) work.
Jennifer Morris
This book was not at all what I expected it to be. That said, I still found it to be boring, and mundane. The entire book was about making a business plan for your hobby, but no information about how to achieve anything in the plan. The author should have taken more time to give examples and direction on how to take steps to fulfill the basic goals associated with this type of business model.
Josh
Not a bad read. Mostly the same info / guidance as other books of this type. However, I did appreciate the q&a session sections with individuals such as an attorney & CPA ~ this was helpful to gain an understanding of how they look at creative professionals and what a new craft business owner should look for / ask before entering into an agreement with them.
Felicia
I really wanted to like this more, but I found a lot of the information to be very basic. Maybe if this is your first month or two in business this would be of more help. There really wasn't enough coverage for online based businesses for this to be worth reading for me personally.
Jenny
Mar 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a lovely, comprehensive book. This would be essentially helpful to someone just starting out. Yet, it also caused me to think a little more intentionally about what I am already doing with my business at www.CarroTopStudio.com. Well done Kari Chapin!
Katherine
Apr 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was great! It was more intended for someone who already has a business and wants to grow it instead of someone who has taken up a hobby and wants to try to make a little money off it. But it still gave me a lot of good things to think about. It also has a lot of nice writing prompts.
Natalie
Dec 09, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book compiles everything I've read about starting a small creative business into one easy to digest handbook. Perfect for someone just beginning their research or anyone in need of some small business clarity.
Milka
Aug 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good follow-up to The Handmade Marketplace, where Chapin goes into more details on how to grow your business once you've started it. Nothing in there is rocket science and makes it easy to implement once you're ready to take those steps.
Deanna Lack
Some of the exercises in this book were very revealing for me but a lot of it didn't feel useful. Worth looking over but it was a lot about finding a mentor, hiring professionals, etc. that I really didn't need.
Jan Waller

Yet another business book for the worst business woman on the planet. I think I'm going to write a blog post about all these businessy books I've read. That and find a support group to break the habit.
Cecile Hibbs
Jan 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kari Chapin's second book carries on the tradition of being incredibly easy to understand and follow. A wealth of fantastic advice for creative people interested in starting their own small business/creative side venture.
Trish
Feb 15, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Not quite what I was hoping for. I felt the book was more of a supporter for your creativeness but not so much helpful info to help you "grow". Lots of focus on developing a business plan, which I am beyond.
Eden
This book is to help you build and grow your craft business. The first few chapters are about planning your business and such. Not a bad book, definitely helpful for those start their businesses.
Katie
Excellent resource for handmade business owners. The information is relevant, concise and straightforward. I learned a great deal that I will definitely apply to my own business.
Lisa
Oct 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2014
Need to add this one to my library.
Rosemary Yeley
Sep 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thoroughly enjoyed and learned from the book. Addresses current issues and techniques for growing a great online presence for the creative entrepreneur!
Anne
Mar 17, 2016 marked it as craft-books  ·  review of another edition
To re-check from library.
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