Back in our first year, the Maker Shed shipped more than 25,000 kits. Not a bad start, but after years of steady growth, we shipped 105,000 units last year.
Why this upswing in kit interest? Part of our success is the result of a smart team that uncovers beautiful kits that resonate with our audience of makers and science enthusiasts. However, I think the data is also telling us about the value we all derive from a good hands-on project.
Perhaps it’s focusing on something we can control when so much around us is uncontrollable. Maybe it’s the satisfaction of picking up a new skill, dusting off an old one, or simply learning how something works (or doesn’t). Maybe it’s the memories that live on long after you’re done.
And there’s definitely something intrinsically satisfying about passing along skills to a younger maker. What kid doesn’t enjoy a workbench, a few tools, and a good project on a rainy day?
Economically, times are tough, but our basements and backyards are coming alive with experiments, tinkering, and the maker spirit. So this holiday season, whether you provision a project from materials lying around the house, or decide to buy a project kit from the Maker Shed or elsewhere, give yourself and someone you care about the gift of making something together.
Look For our “Maker Made” Seal Of Recognition For Outstanding Kits
After years of combing the planet for awesome kits created by independent makers, we decided to create our own form of recognition. We’re excited to announce Make’s very own “Maker Made” seal of recognition for kits that the MAKE staff find particularly awesome. Whenever you see this badge next to a kit, just know it was created by an independent maker, and we think it deserves special props.
Looking for a Few Good Kit Makers
Meanwhile, we’re expanding our line of kits — and we want to meet new kit makers.
Ever had a cool idea for a kit but weren’t sure how to bring it to market? Or maybe you’re already selling kits but you’d like to expand your reach. Breaking into the market can be daunting for independent makers.
We love to help makers get started with kit making and bringing them to market. We’re willing to take risks on promising small runs, often hand-assembled by makers in their own workshops. This is how we started, how we built our business, and what keeps us different. If you have a kit you’re about to launch or even a kit design you’re not sure how to develop, we’d love to hear from you.
We curate kits for a range of interests and experience levels, and are particularly interested in robotics, electronics, microcontrollers, ballistics and aeronautics, servos and motors, smart materials, crafts, and anything that engages kids. We love kits that work well in classrooms, camps, hackerspaces, even birthday parties! Ideal kits are inspirational, educational, include everything you need to get started with helpful documentation, and encourage exploring more than one outcome.
Interested in getting your kit in front of millions of makers? Send a note to [email protected] and tell us what you have in mind. We keep the process friendly, down to earth, and straightforward.
Top-Selling Maker Shed Kits in 2011
1. Mintronics Survival Pack MSTIN2
2. MakerShield Kit MSMS01
3. Make: Electronics Component Pack 1 MECP1
4. Getting Started With Arduino Kit MSGSA
5. Learn To Solder Skill Badge Kit MKLS01
Available at: makershed.com