Hand Carved Walking Sticks – A Great Money Making Hobby
Walking Sticks are rapidly becoming a part of every active lifestyle home. As people engage in activities to become more fit, walking and hiking become the favorite forms of exercise. To be a stylish hiker or walker you simply must have a staff or cane to hold your head up proud.
Aside from the flimsy pride reason just given, a walking stick has a couple of proper uses. Anyone who has hiked or backpacked a mountain or backwoods trail will tell you how useful a hiking stick is when trekking down a washed out path or crossing a stream. After all, it is all about that third point of contact with the ground below you. And, if your preference is just walking down your street or around the block near your home, your staff will keep those pesky dogs at bay. The latter I can speak to from personal experience!
So, how do you get started? First thing is to find some source of wood sticks. This can be as simple as heading out to the woods and gathering some sticks. Poplar, aspen, sassafras, sweet gum, dogwood, hickory and cedar all will make good walking sticks. Use recently dead wood if possible but if not, some of these choices will need a bit of controlled drying before use to prevent cracking.
While you want your potential walking staff to be basically straight, look for knots or bends that give it character beyond just being a straight stick. The more unusual and unique it is, the more likely it will snatched up by someone at that slightly better price.
Sticks can be made with the bark on or off. It all depends on the characteristics of type of wood and what look you want it to have. As you begin to sell them, you will quickly learn what your customers like. In the beginning, have some variety available.
Carving is optional but can give your sticks that unique look and make them worth more. Keep it simple is likely the best advice to follow. Do a little looking online to get some ideas if your stuck on this.
To prevent the bottom tips from splitting you can tightly wrap leather around each. To give the stick a more comfortable grip, these also can be wrapped with leather. A good source of leather for these purposes is to head for your nearest charity thrift store and pick up a used leather jacket and cut strips from it.
Selling Your Sticks
What you decide to sell these for is really up to you. Consider the amount of time you have in each of them and give yourself, at a minimum, a reasonable wage. In most cases you will have less than a hour of time invested in each one.
Assuming you have a quality product, simple sticks may be priced at around $5 to $20. Walking sticks with a bit of character to them usually can be sold for $20 to $50 or more in some cases. A bit of research on the web will give you some ideas as to pricing in an online venue.
There are a number of places where your sticks can be sold. Online, you always have eBay as an option as well as ETSY and a few other craft selling sites. Flea markets are another possible outlet with the understanding that people shopping at flea markets are looking for bargains. Arts and crafts shows are another choice if you really get going, but note that craft show booth rentals are usually expensive.
The other choices for selling include anyplace where outdoor enthusiasts gather. Gun and camping expositions can also be good choices.
One little bit of advice, if gathering sticks from a woods not part of your property, be careful not to trespass where you are not welcome! If unsure, always ask permission of the owner.
This can be a fun and financially rewarding hobby. Gets you outdoors a bit and lets you create items with your mind and hands. It doesn’t get much better than that!
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