How to Make Products From Your Work

jenna rainey

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I’m an artist, self-taught designer, and multi-faceted creative entrepreneur who is hell-bent on teaching everyone how to find their inner creative voice.

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How to Make Products From Your Work

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How to make products from your work?

This is a question I get asked quite frequently. If you haven’t seen already, I have my prints and designs used on products like these phone cases with Casetify, and I even had a full planner collection launch in Staples last year!

So how did my artwork go from sitting on my desk at home to sitting on shelves in retail stores? The answer is: licensing!

Related: Art Licensing: Is It For You and How It Works

About 4 years ago, I started working with manufacturers to produce my work on products. From yoga towels to calendars, stationery sets and baby clothes, I’ve worked with a wide range and variety of manufacturers and companies to create stunning products…and what’s the best part?

I don’t have to manufacture the products myself!! Say goodbye to overhead costs, time spent sourcing materials and shipping product and hellloooooo passive income!

Maybe you’ve been making prints and products on your own and you want to expand supply, or you just don’t want to deal with the headache of manufacturing products yourself…well, finding and working with manufacturers to license your work is the TICKET.

Here’s how to make products from your work:

Research, research, research

Finding manufacturers (ahem, the right manufacturers) requires some research. This could mean strolling through stores and looking at the labels of products you love. Who manufactured them? Or browsing online to find companies that produce wallpaper, bedding—you name it—with an outside designer’s work on them. Don’t know how to do this? My licensing agent (Julie) and I talk about this in-depth in our course Brand Plus Brand!


Present and Pitch!

Once you find manufacturers to work with, it’s time to present and pitch your work in a way that shows them what you do! This means mock-ups with your designs on similar products to what they produce, sharing with them a summary of the value you can add to working with them…is it social media clout? A large library of work? Certain connections or press?


Hand off the work and let them work their magic!

If the patterns and prints are already done, you get to just sit back and watch the magic happen. Of course there’s approval processes and such, but this is the beauty of licensing your work: Manufacturers can select prints to use from your library of work that’s already done! Pretty cool, right?

If you need further tips on getting started with licensing your work, check out this free checklist with all the steps you need to get going!

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