An Etsy Economy

Over the past few years, the Etsy community — a global online network of independent artists and designers — have been pioneering a new model for economic prosperity. In a recent survey we conducted with 5,500 US sellers, 74% consider their Etsy shops businesses. As middle-skill, middle-wage jobs continue to decline, Etsy sellers represent an encouraging shift towards using manufacturing skills to generate supplemental income and flexible employment.


Many low-income groups have long had craft and manufacturing skills, but are unsure of how to unlock the potential of these skills for income and wellbeing in this day and age. We believe that a key part of the solution is providing targeted education. We have created a curriculum with 6 modules intended to be taught in person by experienced local Etsy sellers over the course of 2 to 6 weeks. Each module includes hands-on practice on a personal Etsy.com shop, and strategies for success across a variety of platforms. We’re excited to see what opportunities more independent, creative businesses can bring to these communities and beyond.


The Craft Entrepreneurship Cities

We’ve partnered with several cities — along with the local Etsy Teams — to bring this economic model to the communities that need it most.

Rockford, Illinois

We've partnered with the Rockford Housing Authority to teach the program to local residents in the public housing system.

See Updates From Rockford

New York City

In New York, our partners at the NYC Department of Small Business Services launched the classes at their Workforce 1 Career Centers throughout the city.

See Updates From New York
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Newark, NJ

Nonprofit Brick City Development Corporation is using the program to help Newark residents start and grow small businesses.

See Updates From Newark
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Dallas, TX

The Dallas Public Library is integrating the classes into their programing focused on entrepreneurial and workforce training.

See Updates From Dallas
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Watsonville, CA

The Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at Cabrillo College offers Craft Entrepreneurship classes to support supplemental income for the underemployed.

See Updates From Watsonville
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Oldham, UK

In the UK, we’ve partnered with Oldham Council and Oldham College to provide micro-business training to local residents.

See Updates From Oldham

Teachers

Craft Entrepreneurship classes are taught in person by talented Etsy sellers. Meet the teachers who share their personal stories, local community passion, and knowledge of starting and growing a business on Etsy with Craft Entrepreneurship students around the country!

Meet the Etsy Teachers

Teams

Teams are self-organized groups of Etsy members who come together to collaborate around common interests, often a shared location. Teams are critical to the success of the Craft Entrepreneurship Program. They give feedback on how to tailor the program to the needs of their local community, host events that include Craft Entrepreneurship participants, and provide teachers for the classes.

Meet the Etsy Teams that we’re proud to have collaborated with for the Craft Entrepreneurship Program in their cities.

Meet the Etsy Teams

Want to get involved?

The manifestation of this movement will look different in every community depending on the specific needs that we are striving to address. However, in each case, the program will be a collaborative partnership between a 1 city, an 2 Etsy team, 3 Etsy, and the 4 program participants.

The
Craft Entrepreneurship
Partners

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1

City

Big or small, each host city is responsible for assisting in identifying and marketing to the community group who can best be served by the curriculum, providing any prerequisite education needed by the group (for example: basic technology literacy), compensating the teacher, and providing classroom space. These benefits can also be provided by a partnering non-profit agency.

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2

Etsy Team

These inspirational crews of location-based Etsy sellers are on hand to offer added help to the class, including teaching and mentorship. Nobody understands the power of the community at the heart of our marketplace better than our teams.

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3

Etsy

Don’t worry, we’ve got your back! We provide the curriculum, assist teams in coordinating with their city agency or local non-profit, train teachers as needed, and provide communications and marketing support to partners.

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4

Program Participants

By attending classes and providing peer support to other participants, these are the folks who make it all happen.


We’ll soon be sharing the curriculum online, so stay tuned! Looking to bring Craft Entrepreneurship to your community? Reach out to us and we’ll send you an update when we’re ready to expand.

Let's Talk Craft Entrepreneurship