The first report to identify and gauge appetite for British craft for over a decade reveals that the public’s passion for craft has never been greater. 73% of UK adults had bought craft in 2019, purchasing almost 25 million handcrafted objects. In a significant shift, the report shows that almost a third (32%) of today’s buyers are aged under 35 – making this demographic the biggest buyer of craft today.

The report was implemented by the Crafts Council and eight leading national partners (among 5,000 UK residents, 1,500 US citizens and 1,700 professional makers) and implemented prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. It has subsequently been layered with a further Crafts Council survey carried out among 573 UK-based makers after the first UK-wide lockdown in spring 2020.

Key findings include:

  • The under 35-year-old craft buying market has grown by 32% since 2006
  • 10.3m of us are buying craft online – a figure that has more than tripled over the last decade. However, the majority of people still prefer to buy in-person
  • Online platforms have fuelled much of this growth: in December 2018, Etsy reported that there were 220,000 active sellers in the UK with a further 9,000 makers on Folksy
  • Jewellery is the most popular craft discipline to purchase by volume, but glass and metal have seen the most sizeable growth since 2006
  • 85% of Americans surveyed would buy a piece of craft compared with 88% here in the UK. 28% have bought from a UK maker and 59% would consider doing so – pointing to considerable potential for growth. There are 10.5m untapped, potential consumers living in New York and LA.
Crafts Council
Crafts Council and Partners
24 June 2020
The Market for Craft