Friday, January 16, 2009

Ask Dee: Contract Crocheting

Dear Dee,
I was reading your blog archives and see you earn money from crochet by teaching and by designing patterns. Do you ever hire people to crochet for you or test your patterns? I am looking for ways I could make some extra cash with my crocheting.

Dear Bev,
Yes, it's true, I do earn money by teaching crochet locally and nationally, and from time to time by having one (or more) of my patterns purchased by a publisher. Since I do not mass-produce my patterns, nor sell mass-produced crochet garments, I do not hire people to do my crocheting for me. However, I do, from time to time, crochet for others, and you can too.

It's called "Contract Crocheting." This is when you have an agreement with another individual or company (say like Lion Brand) to crochet something for them. They will pay you based upon an agreed upon formula -- either by piece, stitch, or by length of time. And usually they will supply the yarn or thread for the project.

You certainly won't get rich teaching, publishing patterns, or contract crocheting, but it could lead to a little extra cash in your pocket. If this appeals to you then here is what I suggest:

  1. Put together an online page, like on, of projects you have completed. Make sure the pictures are clear so that a prospective employer can see your stitch work. Many designers and publishers scan the Internet looking for people to crochet for them, so this is a good business practice. ((Keep family and other non-related pictures out; remember, you want this to look professional.)
  2. List your qualifications. If you don't have any, then consider taking the Craft Yarn Council of America's certification course, or some other course that will testify to your dedication to the art of crochet.
  3. Join the Crochet Guild of America if you haven't already. Once you've joined, upgrade (at no additional cost) your membership to "Associate" and request to be listed as a "contract crocheter." (or designer, or teacher -- whatever avenue of crochet you want to become professionally involved in.) You will then be paired up with a mentor who will help you reach your goals. ((I suggest joining the CGOA prior to taking the CYCA's course as you can get a discount using your CGOA membership.))
  4. If you can, plan to attend a Crochet Guild of America's Conference. It's a great way to network; meeting those in the industry.
  5. Talk to your tax accountant. Since this is money earned, there is a good chance it will be taxable income. Every state has it's own rules, so it's also good to check if you will also need a business license.

For more information on the Crochet Guild of America, visit:
For more information on the Craft Yarn Council's certification course, visit:

No comments: