Arts and crafts – no more only for summer camp – have already been growing in popularity. It’s paying down for retailers able to maintaining Americans’ creative whims, though some that have stuck to some single niche have struggled.
A tiny table with a few chairs welcomes patrons within the lower level at Artist & Craftsman shop within the South Loop on April 28, 2016. Sales of coloring and art supplies grew about 7 percent in 2015 and today constitute a $1.14 billion market, based on market research firm The NPD Group, which attributed the development to art and craft paper, paint and painting supplies. “The DIY (diy) movement took off through the recession, and because the economy recovered, people just continued making use of their Cheap Craft Supplies habits,” said Dana Macke, lifestyles and leisure analyst at researching the market firm Mintel.
Online handmade goods marketplace Etsy reported a 19.4 percent year-over-year increase in active sellers inside the third quarter of 2015, to get a total of 1.5 million worldwide, plus a 25 percent increase in active buyers. According to a 2014 survey of U.S. Etsy sellers, 76 percent considered their shop on the website a business, and 30 percent considered it their primary occupation, the organization said.
But the majority of the industry for arts and crafts materials in the U.S. probably originates from enthusiasts, not professionals, according to Macke. Although 45 percent of Americans inside their 30s surveyed by Mintel said they sold a handmade craft through an online shop within the twelve months that ended October 2015, it’s not clear the number of sell frequently. In last year’s Mintel survey, only about 10 percent of people said they crafted to supplement their income, Macke said.
Although we have seen some consolidation among retailers serving creative types, including Blick Art Materials’ buying of Utrecht Art Supplies in 2013, specialty arts and crafts chains appear more insulated from e-commerce pressure than some segments in the retail sector, industry analysts said.
Specialty chains are the most common craft supply source among women, based on Mintel’s research. Of females who made crafts within the last year, 68 percent purchased from specialty chains, 53 percent from Wal-Mart and 32 percent from Amazon, in accordance with Mintel research. Only 36 percent of men who had made an art or craft project during the last year shopped at a specialty store, instead choosing Wal-Mart, Amazon and Target.
As well as paints and canvases the Artist & Craftsman shop inside the South Loop carries all sorts of many other materials including yarn on April 28, 2016. In comparison, 18 percent of ladies and 21 percent of males shopped at local independent stores, based on Mintel research.
Specialty craft chains generally haven’t been that aggressive in pursuing the online marketplace, but the category “doesn’t actually work that well online,” said Michael Baker, a Deutsche Bank analyst covering arts and crafts retailer Michaels. People like to see what they’re buying and browsing to discover inspiration, he said.
Michael’s just has sold products through its website for around 2 yrs, and CEO Chuck Rubin estimated online sales would only account for a single-digit amount of sales inside the crafts category even in the long run. “I think it’s an excellent add-on, but I don’t think it will likely be the game changer here it’s been in other retail industries,” Rubin said. When Hobby Lobby Stores surveyed its customers, no more than 2 percent said they preferred shopping on the web, compared with 71 percent who prefer to purchase in-store, said spokeswoman Mandi Broadfoot.
Columbia College student Alsu Andova, 26, gathers materials for screen printing at Artist & Craftsman shop inside the South Loop April 28, 2016. However the Internet – as well as a flood of craft-related blogs, websites and tutorials – is providing them with an enhancement, Broadfoot and Rubin said. “Pinterest and YouTube are the greatest things that could have happened to the industry,” Rubin said.
In a Mintel survey, just below 40 percent of adults who did an arts or crafts project in the past year said that they had turned to YouTube for inspiration, and something in three cited social networking website Pinterest. YouTube mpzzzq greater than 139,000 crafts-related video channels. Lynn Cagayat, 49, enjoys creating decorative flower arrangements, but on Thursday she browsed Michaels’ dessert decoration aisle. She loves baking the Filipino sweets her mom and grandmother taught her to create but has been watching YouTube how-to videos on elaborately frosted American-style cakes.
Not all craft retailers have already been able to capitalize on the growing interest. Mississippi-based fabric and sewing retailer Hancock Fabrics declared bankruptcy in February as well as in early April announced it would close its remaining 185 stores nationwide.
Sewing and quilting have a fairly steady following, unlike scrapbooking, that is declining in popularity, but haven’t been growing like other crafts either, Macke said. Retailers carrying an array of items are likely better-equipped to profit from new business who may dabble in making a variety of handmade goods as trends shift, she said.