Calling all makers! Looking to jazz up your crafting streams? Whether you’re a knitter, model builder, or underwater basket weaver, we’ve got plenty of ideas for fun and interesting streams. Check out our list of ideas as well as a few tips on how to work with multiple cameras to best show off your skills.
Tips for Setting up Your Workspace
Multiple camera setups are ideal for craft streams. An up-close look at what you’re making is crucial, but at the same time, viewers will also want to see your face. Here are some ideas for how to set up your space with multiple cameras.
- Use a webcam to display your face and a DSLR or mirrorless camera to show your hands at work. Check out our article on how to use a DSLR as a webcam to learn more.
- Use a webcam to display your face and your phone to show your hands at work. If you use Streamlabs Collab Cam, you can connect your phone to your stream and use it as a camera. Check out our article on how to use Collab Cam as a secondary camera to learn more.
- Use a webcam to display your face and Logitech’s Mevo Start (a wireless camera designed for streaming) to show your hands at work. Mevo Start also comes in a pack of three so you can share multiple areas of your space (e.g., your cutting table, sewing machine, and your face).
Crafting Stream Ideas
There are loads of people out there interested in crafting but don’t know where to start. As a maker who streams, you have the unique opportunity to teach people your craft in real time. Though YouTube videos are great for learning, streaming has the advantage of live question and answer time. You can also show things from different angles or repeat certain steps at your viewers’ request.
Pro tip: Tease the event beforehand so you can gather as big a crowd as possible. Give viewers at least a few days notice (though do a week or more if you can) and keep mentioning the event across your social media while counting down the days.
Adding a themed day of the week to your stream is a great way to attract regular viewers. Make it Monday, WIP Wednesday, Stash-buster Saturday—the possibilities are endless. Themed days are fun, easy ways to produce regular content; no need to stress over coming up with new stream ideas every week. An added bonus is that viewers love routines. Who knows? Your themed day could turn into their favorite day of the week.
Gathering together with fellow crafters in person is great but not always practical or possible. Create your own craft club free from everyday limitations by hosting it virtually. Encourage fellow crafters to grab a project and come hang out with you on stream. People can ask questions in chat if they get stuck and you (or any other crafters watching) can offer advice.
Pro Tip: Host your craft club on the same day every week or month to encourage regular viewers. It will be easier for your audience to make space in their schedules if you always hold craft clubs on the same date and time. Consider starting a Discord server to encourage people to participate and showcase their projects.
Combine Your Hobbies
What else do you enjoy besides crafting? Can you work your other hobbies into your craft live streams somehow? For example, you may enjoy true crime podcasts, gaming, anime, or reading. While you definitely can’t watch anime on stream due to copyright restrictions, you can sew a cosplay of your favorite character, crochet an amigurumi modeled after them, and more.
Can You Watch YouTube Videos on Stream?
Watching YouTube videos (like those from your favorite true crime channel) with your viewers while you craft falls into a gray area. Technically, if you comply with fair use rules, you should be able to watch YouTube videos on stream. At the same time, you don’t want to steal views from other hard working creators like yourself. If you’re going to play YouTube videos on your stream, check the rules of your streaming platform beforehand and try to obtain permission from the YouTuber themselves. It’s also good etiquette to encourage your viewers to subscribe, like, and comment to their YouTube channel.
Pro Tip: Combining hobbies can help you find loyal viewers. For example, if someone is a fan of both knitting and Jane Austen and they randomly pop into your stream to find you working on a shawl inspired by Elizabeth Bennett, the chances of them dropping a follow or sub are much higher than if you were creating just a random, plain shawl.
Try Something New
Starting a new craft can be really intimidating. In fact, many people will avoid trying new things because they’re afraid of failure. As an experienced maker, you can showcase yourself trying out different crafts on stream. While there may be some hiccups along the way, your perseverance will likely inspire your viewers to try something new for themselves. Also, learning to craft in a new medium is always a good time.
Pro Tip: If you’re trying your hand at a new craft, look for something that uses tools you already have so you can save some cash. For example, punch needle uses yarn, embroidery cloth, and an embroidery hoop. If you’re a knitter, crocheter, or cross stitcher, you’ll already have some of these supplies in your stash.
Start a Series
Got a big project that you can’t accomplish in a single stream? Consider breaking it up into a small series. Take your viewers along for the journey while you tackle a major project like a quilt, complicated cosplay, or detailed model building. Your audience will love watching your progress and seeing all the hard work that goes into these kinds of projects. Things like how-to books and short YouTube videos can’t show all of the time and energy it takes to make a big project, which is why sharing the experience on stream will make it all the more special.
Pro Tip: Unlike theme days, don’t feel the need to restrict yourself to specific days of the week or month. On the contrary, you can stream your series multiple days in a row if you’re in the groove. Let your crafting mojo be your guide!
Behind the Scenes
If you run a handmade or crafting business, viewers will love hearing about everything that goes on behind the scenes. You don’t have to give away your trade secrets—you can simply stream yourself working on orders, packaging things, organizing your inventory, etc. Viewers can ask questions and you can choose whether to answer them or not. By talking about your business, you might even be able to convert some of your viewers into customers.
Pro Tip: Decide ahead of time which questions are off-limits and prepare your responses accordingly. For example, some crafters don’t like sharing their suppliers, so you can say something like, “Thank you for the question but it’s my policy not to share my supplier info.”
Perhaps you’ve seen crafters on YouTube posting videos such as, “How much can I crochet in 24 hours?” or “Melting 100 different soaps together.” Everyone loves watching a good challenge, which is why these videos typically perform well. Though you don’t have to go to such extremes (even though 24 hour-long streams are definitely a thing), you could liven up your channel by holding a challenge. Think of something related to your usual craft that would be reasonably difficult but not impossible to achieve.
Pro Tip: Hold a challenge with a measurable result such as a timed challenge (complete X within X number of minutes).
Hopefully this post has given you some ideas for your craft streams. Whether you want to have themed days, try a new medium, or start your own craft club, the important thing is to have fun and enjoy your streams. Remember that tools like Streamlabs Collab Cam and Mevo Start are great for capturing all the important angles necessary to properly showcase your craft. Happy crafting and streaming!