Don’t Get Scammed by These Crafty Work-at-Home Assembly Jobs

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Are you a crafty person who likes making jewelry, magnets, stuffed animals, etc? Have you ever thought about capitalizing on your craft-making skills and making money from your crafts?

Apparently, there are a number on online sites that have done just that. Most of these sites work on the premise that you pay an up-front fee for training to get started with a given craft project. Then, you order and pay for the basic craft materials that will be used to construct your craft item. Once your craft item is finished, you sell it back to the company and receive payment for your finished product.

Work at home craft assembly companies

I found the following example work at home craft assembly sites that offer craft items to making at home and then sell back to the company through so-called “buyback” programs:

DisciplesCross.com: This site offers a training video directly from Pastor John Raymond of New Horizon Christian Fellowship in Slidell, Louisiana for $69.95. The training video also includes a starter kit that makes 25 crosses. Once you’ve watched that video, you can order additional cross-making kits for $25 and up. Each cross that conforms to this program’s quality standards is reimbursed $2.25. “God bless & happy cross making!” (a direct quote from the site)

MagicalGiftDollhouses.com: Also known as New England Crafters, this company offers mostly jewelry making kits. You pay $49.95, plus $9.95 for shipping, per kit. Each kit includes instructions and supplies for making the craft item. When you are finished with your project, you send your items back to the company and are reimbursed for each approved piece. The company then sends you additional craft supplies which you assemble and send back for reimbursement.

TinyDetails.com: With this site, you pay a $55.00 refundable deposit to obtain a starter kit for whichever dollhouse item you choose to make. There are 14 different miniature items currently available. Items that are made to the correct instructional specifications are reimbursed $50-$200.

Sounds simple and easy, right?

Except that it’s not. Each craft assembly site makes sure to state, in one form or another, that the assembled craft pieces must first be approved before they are paid for by the materials issuing company. And those craft items will not be approved unless instructions are followed to the letter. But what if the provided instructions are made unclear to the assembler or the provided materials are so cheap and flimsy that a quality product cannot be made? Here are some testimonials from various work-at-home craft assemblers who tried to make a little side income through work at home craft assembly jobs:

DisciplesCross.com: This company had several negative reviews and unhappy customers were quite vocal with their complaints.

Mary Alice (Houston, TX): “I ordered the Disciple’s Cross Kit several years ago and made the Crosses, and also ordered 1 pre-made Cross already made by them. You know how I know this company is a scam? When I submitted my 10 crosses to be inspected, I sent the ‘perfect’ Disciple Cross they made for inspection, and guess what- they rejected all of them (even the one they made) and said “you have potential”. You can never ever make ‘their’ crosses good enough…do not waste your money.”

Jeff Martis (Central IL): “A friend of mine signed up for this program…His package showed up, and everything was there that was supposed to be there, but the quality of the wire you were supplied was a very inferior grade and tended to break all the time…after two or three days we made 25 crosses while watching [the instructional video]. I did quality control and checked every cross to ensure it met standards. We determined that 3 were sub standard so we reassembled them again, and sent off all of the crosses into the buyback program. 10 days later we got a package back with 23 crosses that had been determined to be “not of the quality needed in order to qualify for the buy back program”.

Graham (Boone USA): “While you are BUYING supplies, they are quick to reply. After telling them I had 400 crosses ready to send to them I got a reply telling me there was a 2 month long wait for turnaround. After that they stopped replying to me, period. The ONLY communications I’ve had from them in a year now are their offers to SELL ME CROSSES!

Nobody will buy the crosses! Not local churches. Not local Christian bookstores. No stores, convenience stores, fund raisers, flea markets – nobody will buy my crosses INCLUDING Pastor John!”

MagicalGiftDollhouses.com: Reviews of New England Crafters/MagicalGiftDollhouses were mixed. While customers did not come outright and call this company a scam, many did state that its craft projects were time-consuming and difficult to do. The company has a high rejection rate and sends back many craft projects marked as unacceptable. Even successful crafters, such as New England Crafters owner Cheska Arnone herself, might make only $12/hour constructing this company’s difficult crafts.

TinyDetails.com: RipoffReport lists at least 22 complaints about TinyDetails, most of which focus on the following issues:

  • The materials the company sends are shoddy and misaligned, so one can never make the high quality products that are demanded.
  • Repeated calls, voice mails and emails are left unanswered.
  • The company rejects its own “perfect” sample craft items after customers send them back and claim those items as their own work.

Work at home craft assembly summary

While not every work at home craft assembly job is a scam, even legitimate craft assembly companies are getting some heat for their slow turnaround times and high product rejection rates. Assembly workers frequently mention that the training videos are either incomplete or falsely illustrate the quickness and ease with which the selected project can be finished. And of course, all craft assembly companies require an up-front training fee, a common sign of an online work at home scam.

Work at home craft assembly jobs are also prone to a second tier of scams: Unscrupulous companies sell lists of purported “genuine” craft assembly sites for a fee to hapless customers. These lists provide names of craft assembly sites that are either out of business or which thrive on subscriber fees more than product buy backs from crafters. Kinya provided a review of one such list site, Assembly-Jobs.com, for readers.

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17 Comments

    1. Yep. I researched New England Crafters for weeks and talked with my husband about it extensively before signing up. This was before I knew of paid forum posters. $60 and 72 hours of wasted time later I fell for my very first (and last) internet scam.

    2. Halina Zakowicz says:

      Thanks for your comment, M. I also found a lot of “product review” posts, especially on content mill sites like eHow and Yahoo Voices, about craft assembly jobs being a good work at home opportunity. These product review writers usually have some hidden agenda and are just trying to recruit people into the scam. I’m sorry to hear that you were scammed- but at least it wasn’t for hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

    3. Roger Smith says:

      I really appreciate this information. I was thinking about signing up for magicalgiftdollhouse, but I was worried about it being a scam. Please tell me if there is any legitimate work at home assembly companies? Probably not…..

    4. Hi Roger. After looking through many, many craft assembly sites, I could not find a single one that wasn’t a scam. Unfortunately, that’s probably what you didn’t want to hear. There may be one out there that’s not a scam, of course, but I’ve yet to find it…good luck to ya, though.

    5. i thought a craft at home project would be good for me because i am disabiled and need the extra income. i was so wrong. i paid $59.95 for a starter kit to make little ponies out of felt. how hard can that be? let me tell you it was not hard but it was very hard to get anything approved. in one year they never approved anything i sent them. i even did what you did, i sent them their own product back and they rejected it.but it took me a year to dropped this idea. now i am looking at your website and thinking of trying this again. maybe this will work for me. thank you..

    6. Hello Elaine,
      I’d recommend staying clear of all craft assembly sites- I’ve yet to find one that is legit. If you can make designs on the computer, though, you may wish to give Cafe Press a try. I know several individuals who sell items through Cafe Press after inputting their own designs or sayings/logos. I hope this helps!

    7. Todd Anderson says:

      what is a good Jewelry work at home opportunities.

      i think some require some investment for materials and supplies.

      I know the best ones i feel and think you have to pay for the materials and supplies.

    8. I have been working for New England Crafters for over 8 years and it has been the BEST experience of my life. The one that said they rejected their sample well of course they did because they mark their samples so they know when someone sends on in. It can be difficult to get approved but I have done projects where I was approved in one try and others took me quite are few however once you are approved you still have to keep up standards or they won’t except your work. These people are not just selling at craft fairs but they sell at boutiques and other places as well so they must have high standards. I make a very nice monthly income with this company and it allows me the luxury of staying home which saves me lots of money. They have also ALWAYS answered any questions I have had when I called or sent emails in a timely fashion and very politely.

    9. I have been with “New England Crafters” since 2007 or 2008. Not approved, as yet…this will be my last try. I believe in their program this is why I have stayed with them..I hope I am not wrong..this will be my last attempt. I feel I have found the craft, I can actually do…it has come out great. I am making the “Donut Magnet” will be sending in. If not, well I will see

    10. Have you tried Titan Chains they are legitimate, of course they need the work you do to look nice so they can resell it, but they helped me every step of the way to learn how and once I got it down they approved me and have paid me on everything I have ever made for them. They even paid me on a few that I had made incorrectly! they actually paid me first and then sent it back so I could make the correction- I was shocked, now that is trust and honesty! If you work hard and make a nice product they will take care of you. While you can’t just sit back and make money, you have to actually work for it, but you will get paid with Titan Chains. By the way they use email and if you email them they will always respond quickly and thoroughly- by phone you usually have to leave a message, but they will call back. This is my experience with home crafting and I am so glad I found them, I was certain all these places were scams (trust me I have tried others too) until I found them and I work hard at it and I do make money!

    11. Halina Zakowicz says:

      Hi Diane, Thanks for your message. I’d be careful with Titan Chains- every “good” review I found for this site was sponsored or submitted by the company itself. I also found the following link wherein people say that the kits take too long to complete http://www.wahm.com/forum/craft-companies-crafters-140/582574-titan-chains-2.html. I hope this helps!

    12. Well that’s too bad if this is the case, they really don’t seem like they would do that. I can tell you that I communicate with several other crafters and I know who have posted good reviews as well. I do want to let people know that yes it does take some time to do and I hope people don’t think of these offers like Titan Chains or probably any of these other places as a way to support a family or a career or anything like that. I don’t think they try to act like that is what the program is for or do they say it’s a quick way to make money. It definitely takes some time to learn and really just a fun way to earn some extra money and that’s about it. Thanks for the great info Halina! I sure like the premise of your site! Thank you!
      -Diana

    13. Halina Zakowicz says:

      Hello back Diane! Thanks for taking the time to answer my earlier reply to you. So, have you tried Titan Chains or have other crafters tried the site (or other crafting sites)? If yes, I’d love to hear about these sites from folks who had a good experience. Any info you have would be most appreciated…and thank you for the compliment too!

    14. What about American Diversified Publications?? They claim that you can make money from assemblying crafts, circuit boards and being a mail processor and etc. I was thinking about trying it but I’m not sure if it really works or not. They even offer a money back guarantee less shipping and handling.

    15. Just go buy your own craft supplies, make what you enjoy and put them up for sale on Etsy,com or even ebay! People are totally into buying items that look “Homemade” aka OOAK or original One of A Kind.these sites can charge a small fee for selling it on their site or advertising but they usually do the first 50-100 posts for FREE and if it doesn’t sell you don’t pay a fee! DIY and you can’t go wrong! it works for me! It only took $400 and a bunch of heart ache to figure it out! lol…

    16. kaye mileski says:

      What a great site! I’ve been looking into doing crafts at home to make some extra money. A friend of my husband had a publication that listed several of these companies. She has been making cross stitch for a company and not having any problems. I sent for “bedazzled napkin rings” last week and hope this is a legit company. I’ve been making jewelry for many years now but find it tiresome to sit at a show all weekend long. I need an outlet to keep me busy as I am disabled and unable to work at a regular job. I am going to try selling my jewelry on line. Any info on the above company would be appreciated. Love to bead!

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