Engraved crystal is a popular item used for décor and to give as gifts. Especially when it comes to weddings and business conferences, engraved crystal pieces are used for everything from stemware to recognition plaques. Starting an engraved crystal business can be quite profitable, especially if you offer customized options to your customers, such as adding names or special designs to the finished crystal pieces. To grow a successful business, you will need to study the art of engraving and plan your venture carefully.
Learn how to use laser engraving equipment by taking a class from a company, such as GravoGraph. You will need to practice in order to develop your skills to the point where you can engrave crystal professionally. You can typically purchase your laser from the company you train with.
Decide where you will sell your products. You can open an e-commerce store, sell your engraved items via an artisan marketplace such as 1000 Markets, mall kiosk, set up a flea or craft market booth, or lease a brick-and-mortar store. Selling online is the least expensive, but you can use a combination of selling venues.
Obtain a tax identification number from your state, if required. You may also need an assumed "doing business as" (DBA) name certificate.
Take photographs of some of your work to show to potential customers–this will be your portfolio. You can assemble the photos in a physical book or place them online. Clear photos of multiple angles are best, but you don't necessarily need to hire a professional photographer, especially if you own a good quality digital camera.
Purchase wholesale crystal glasses, plaques, vases, photo frames and other products to engrave unless you plan to have your customers send their items to you. You can buy crystal pieces from a company such as Modern Vase and Gift, CrystALaCarte, or Crystal Images USA.
Promote your crystal engraving business by purchasing ads in wedding magazines, buying a booth at your local wedding fair, listing your business in online and print directories, and handing out coupons and fliers to complimentary businesses such as wedding planning firms, florists and event venues.
Melinda Gaines has been a freelance writer since 2006, with work appearing online for YellowPages and other websites. Her areas of expertise include business, beauty, fashion and sports. Gaines attended the University of Houston where she earned a Bachelor of Science in sport administration.