Covid-19: Consumers getting crafty and creative in lockdown

International arts and crafts platform LoveCrafts.com has reported a significant spike in sales and traffic since the coronavirus crisis shut down shops and restricted people’s movements across the globe.

The number of visitors to its website was up by 58% in April compared to February this year, with 71% of site visitors during the month new to the company, suggesting either new hobbies were either beginning or reignited in lockdown.

LoveCrafts said its tutorial and beginner pages received the most traffic overall, in April, while revenue from the platform surged by 140% – driven by sales of knitting yarn.

LoveCrafts’ email subscriber list has also grown over recent months, jumping by 27%. 

Online activity tracked by the company shows crochet to be among the more popular crafts currently, with the site’s ‘Beginners crochet patterns’ showing the sharpest spike in visitors in the last few weeks.

DIY face mask tutorials and kids crafts’ pages have also received notable uplifts in traffic, reflecting the times. Indeed searches on the website for ‘face mask’ have increased the most over the last three months, and searches for ‘rainbow’, ‘nurse’ and ‘doctor’ are also up significantly, since February 2020, reflecting the nationwide efforts of people to acknowledge the role of the NHS with homemade rainbow-themed artwork.

Edward Griffith, founder of LoveCrafts.com, which bagan life in 2012 as LoveKnitting before consolidating its craft and hobby items on one platform in 2019, said: “We’ve experienced a huge amount of support from our community of makers in the last couple of months.

“Crafting has brought people both joy and distraction during these stressful times and our data certainly shows how popular it’s become.”

Separate research from national carrier Royal Mail, released earlier this week, shows one in five people have been embracing their creative side during lockdown by ordering arts and crafts items. Royal Mail said it was a fairly consistent trend across all age groups and regions in the UK.