Featured Advice
What are your interests?

Investigative?

Investigative

The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with clever technology. They will often follow the latest developments in their chosen field, and prefer mentally stimulating environments.

Occupation Details

logo imagelogo image

Craft Designer

Job Zone

Education
These occupations usually require a Leaving Certificate or equivalent.

Related Experience
Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, jobs requiring you to deal with the public would benefit from previous experience working directly with the public.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, retail salespersons and tellers.

Return to List
Saves this course to your Career File if you are registered.

At a Glance... header image

Craft designers create designs for a wide range of two-dimensional and three-dimensional objects. They may work for large-scale manufacturers or be self-employed.


Videos & Interviews header image

The Work header image

Craft designers design a broad range of two- and three-dimensional products. Most specialise in a particular area, such as:

  • textiles
  • ceramics
  • wood including furniture
  • metalwork/jewellery
  • glass
  • graphic crafts such as calligraphy and printmaking
  • toys
  • musical instruments
  • embroidery
  • leatherwork

Within each of these areas, some designers produce designs for large-scale production by manufacturers, while others work as designer-craft workers producing designs on a small scale.  
 
In large scale production, craft designers are often based in a drawing office. They work to a brief that outlines the type of product required and how much money is available for production. It also outlines what the product is to be used for and who is likely to use it. Designers then research all aspects of the product. They look at existing or similar products, what types of materials they could use and other technical considerations such as whether the material chosen is suited to the purpose of the product. For example, is it strong enough?  
 
Designers then produce sketches and drawings to show different designs, aspects of the products, artistic impressions and technical details. Once designs are accepted, development can involve producing samples or working models and testing a limited run on the production line. Knowledge of the relevant manufacturing process is essential.  
 
Most craft designer follow a similar design process. They work to a brief and undertake research for commissioned work from clients. Some make studio pieces, which they sell through galleries, craft fairs or their own studios.  
 
Designers usually work from studios or workshops and are responsible for the whole design process from creating original designs to making and usually selling the craft products. They may make small batches of a range of items or one-off items. Some of these individual pieces are artistic creations that could be considered more as fine art than commercial craft design. 

They produce their finished pieces individually rather than on a production line. They may use traditional skills and techniques, such as handloom weaving, throwing pots, hand-building ceramics, and wood carving. Craft designers often sell their own work


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation

bullet

Create functional or decorative objects by hand, using a variety of methods and materials.

bullet

Cut, shape, fit, join, mold, or otherwise process materials, using hand tools, power tools, and/or machinery.

bullet

Attend craft shows to market products.

bullet

Select materials for use based on strength, color, texture, balance, weight, size, malleability and other characteristics.

bullet

Apply finishes to objects being crafted.

bullet

Develop concepts or creative ideas for craft objects.

bullet

Set specifications for materials, dimensions, and finishes.

bullet

Confer with customers to assess customer needs or obtain feedback.

bullet

Fabricate patterns or templates to guide craft production.

bullet

Create prototypes or models of objects to be crafted.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.

bullet

Handling and Moving Objects: Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

bullet

Thinking Creatively: Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.

bullet

Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work: Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.

bullet

Performing for or Working Directly with the Public: Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.

bullet

Controlling Machines and Processes: Using either control mechanisms or direct physical activity to operate machines or processes (not including computers or vehicles).

bullet

Monitoring and Controlling Resources: Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.

bullet

Communicating with Persons Outside Organization: Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.

bullet

Selling or Influencing Others: Convincing others to buy merchandise/goods or to otherwise change their minds or actions.

bullet

Making Decisions and Solving Problems: Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.

bullet

Performing Administrative Activities: Performing day-to-day administrative tasks such as maintaining information files and processing paperwork.


Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.

bullet

Fine Arts: Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

bullet

Design: Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

bullet

Sales and Marketing: Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

bullet

Production and Processing: Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.

bullet

Customer and Personal Service: Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.


Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.

bullet

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

bullet

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

bullet

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

bullet

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

bullet

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

bullet

Complex Problem Solving: Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.

bullet

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

bullet

Quality Control Analysis: Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.

bullet

Writing: Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.

bullet

Persuasion: Persuading others to change their minds or behavior.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

To succeed in a career in craft design you need the following skills and qualities:

  • Creativity and artistic skills
  • An appreciation of colour, shape and form.
  • The imagination and ability to create attractive, saleable pieces of work.
  • An individual approach to solving design problems.
  • Drawing ability.
  • The practical skills needed to use tools and equipment.
  • A steady hand and the patience to do fine, detailed work is required for some crafts, such as freehand painting (ceramics) or making delicate jewellery
  • Presentation and communication skills.

In industry, craft designers need a high level of technical understanding, of production capabilities, properties of materials and decorative techniques, for example. It is essential that you keep up-to-date with changes in manufacturing methods and materials, as well as fashion trends and styles.  
 
As a craft designer you will need good business skills to undertake costing and pricing, sales and marketing, and book-keeping.


Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image

bullet

Organisation: Design & Craft Council of Ireland
Address: Castle Yard, Kilkenny
Tel: (056) 77 61804
Email: Click here
Url Click here

Search for Jobs


Industry Expert


Career Articles

Life as a Jewellery Designer

Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...


...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Art, Craft & Design

Search for Related Courses from Qualifax - the National Learners Database

Go..


Further Ed & PLC Course Suggestions
If you are interested in this occupation, then the following courses may also be of interest. Note that these course suggestions are not intended to indicate that they lead directly to this occupation, only that they are related in some way and may be worth exploring.

Courses found: 141


Graphic Design (Visual Communications)
Colaiste Dhulaigh College of Further Education
Art & Craft
Moate Business College
Graphic Design & Art Portfolio Preparation
Galway Community College
Fine Art - Portfolio Preparation
Ormonde College of Further Education
Art & Design (Portfolio Preparation)
Sligo College of Further Education
Art, Graphics & Printmaking - Visual Communications - Portfolio Preparation
Ballyfermot College of Further Education
Furniture Making & Restoration Skills
St. John's Central College
Art, Craft & Design Portfolio Course
Colaiste Stiofain Naofa CFE
Art. Craft & Design - Portfolio Preparation
Sallynoggin College of Further Education
Photography
Sallynoggin College of Further Education
Furniture Making & Design
Sligo College of Further Education
Fur­ni­ture Design & Manufacture
Drogheda Institute of Further Education
Art, Craft & Design
Abbeyleix Further Education Centre
Cartoon Animation
St. John's Central College
Art & Design - Portfolio
Limerick College of Further Education
Art, Design & Mixed Media Portfolio Course
Ballyfermot College of Further Education
Art. Craft. Design
Grennan College
Furniture Design & Making 1
Colaiste Stiofain Naofa CFE
Art and Design Portfolio Preparation
Inchicore College of Further Education
Art. Craft & Design
St. John's Central College
Graphic Design - Visual Communications
Carlow Institute of Further Education and Training
Art. Craft & Design
Errigal College
Art & Design
Moate Business College
Art, Craft & Design
Selskar College
Art & Design - Portfolio
Waterford College of Further Education
Photographic Studies
St. John's Central College
Art
Rossa College
Art - Portfolio Preparation
Greenhills College
Photography
Stillorgan College of Further Education
Graphic Design & Illustration
St. John's Central College
Art and Design Portfolio with Illustration & Graphics
Limerick College of Further Education
Art & Design Portfolio Preparation
Colaiste Dhulaigh College of Further Education
Art Foundation
Stillorgan College of Further Education
Art, Design & Three Dimensional Studies - Portfolio Preparation
Ballyfermot College of Further Education
Furniture Craft & Design
Plunket College
Creative Craft and Design
Central Technical Institute Senior College
Art and Design: Portfolio Preparation
Galway Technical Institute
Animation Drawing Studies
Ballyfermot College of Further Education
Advertising & Graphic Design
Crumlin College of Further Education
Art. Craft & Design
Cavan Institute
Photography
Limerick College of Further Education
Art College - Portfolio Preparation
Colaiste Ide College of Further Education
Furniture Design and Manufacture
Bray Institute of Further Education
Art. Craft & Design
O'Fiaich Institute
Creative Media
Crumlin College of Further Education
Photography - Portfolio Preparation
Marino College of Further Education
Art, Craft & Design
Mallow College of Further Education
Art and Design
Carlow Institute of Further Education and Training
Art, Craft & Design - Portfolio Preparation
Monaghan Institute
Furniture Making & Design
Galway Technical Institute
Furniture Design & Making
Carlow Institute of Further Education and Training
Art - Portfolio Foundation Course
Beaufort College
Art
Ennistymon Vocational School
Art - Portfolio Preparation
Gorey Community School
Art, Craft & Design (Mornings)
Limerick College of Further Education
CAD Architectural Design for Green Building
Templemore College of Further Education
Jewellery & Art Metal Craft
St. John's Central College
Art Craft & Design
Jesus & Mary Secondary School
Furniture Design & Making (Year 1)
Cavan Institute
Art Portfolio Preparation
Bray Institute of Further Education
Creative Craft
Muine Bheag Vocational School
Design
Newport College - St Josephs
Art
Kinsale College
Art Portfolio
Dunboyne College of Further Education
Graphic Design
O'Fiaich Institute
Photography and Digital Media
Waterford College of Further Education
Graphic Design & Illustration
Marino College of Further Education
Furniture Design and Making
Dun Laoghaire Further Education Institute
Furniture Design & Making
Kerry College of Further Education
Art Portfolio Preparation
Colaiste Chathail Naofa
Photographic Studies
O'Fiaich Institute
Musical Instrument Making & Repair
St. John's Central College
Computer Aided Design & Architectural Technology
Galway Technical Institute
Furniture Design
Jesus & Mary Secondary School
Art Craft & Design
Bray Institute of Further Education
Computer Aided Design
Pearse College of Further Education
Design 4 Homes
St. John's Central College
Art, Craft and Design (Portfolio Preparation)
Drogheda Institute of Further Education
Art, Craft & Design
College of Further Education Dundrum
Graphic Design
Selskar College
Art, Craft & Design - Portfolio Preparation
St. Conleth's Community College
Art & Design Portfolio with Animation & Illustration
Limerick College of Further Education
Art, Design & Portfolio Preparation
North Kerry College of Further Education
Digital Creative Media with Animation
Portlaoise Institute of Further Education
Art Portfolio Preparation
Central Technical Institute Senior College
Art - Portfolio
Colaiste Mhuire Thurles
Creative Media
Templemore College of Further Education
Musical Instrument Making & Repair
Dun Laoghaire Further Education Institute
Art 1
Colaiste Stiofain Naofa CFE
Art, Craft & Design - Portfolio Preparation
Liberties College
Animation & Gaming
Galway Technical Institute
Creative Craft
Limerick College of Further Education
Graphic Design
Blackrock Further Education Institute
Art, Craft & Design (Portfolio Preparation)
Kerry College of Further Education
3D Design & Graphics
Cavan Institute
Art with Animation Studies
Ormonde College of Further Education
Creative Media
Duiske College
Animation
Stillorgan College of Further Education
Design
Sligo College of Further Education
Animation & Digital Movie
Limerick College of Further Education
Jewellery Making & Art Metal Craft
Limerick College of Further Education
3D Game Design
Bray Institute of Further Education
Illustration & Model Making
Galway Technical Institute
Industrial Design
Blackrock Further Education Institute
Photography
North Kerry College of Further Education
Creative Craft
Carlow Institute of Further Education and Training
Makers Skills
Colaiste Chathail Naofa
Makers Skills
Colaiste Stiofain Naofa CFE
Textiles
Colaiste Stiofain Naofa CFE
Drawing & Painting
Gorey Community School
Boat Building Design & Maintenance
Galway Community College
Furniture Design and Making
Inchicore College of Further Education
Collaborative Arts
St. John's Central College
Creative Technology & Art
St. John's Central College
Graphic Design
Rossa College
Creative Advertising & Digital Marketing
Marino College of Further Education
Graphic Design
Longford College of Further Education
Art
Jesus & Mary Secondary School
Art Graphic Design & Art Portfolio Preparation
Galway Community College
Visual Merchandising & Retail Display (Portfolio Preparation Course)
Killester College of Further Education
Computer Aided Design
Colaiste Chathail Naofa
Graphic Design
Colaiste Chathail Naofa
Art Craft & Design
Selskar College
Art with Graphic Design
Ormonde College of Further Education
Graphic Design
Dunboyne College of Further Education
Animation & Motion Graphics
Bray Institute of Further Education
Cabinet Making and Design
Galway Technical Institute
Art, Design and Three Dimensional Studies Portfolio
Limerick College of Further Education
Knitwear Design for Fashion & Textiles
Limerick College of Further Education
Interior Design Skills and Portfolio
Limerick College of Further Education
Traineeship - Architectural Technology and Computer Aided Design
Monaghan Institute
Games Art
Kerry College of Further Education
Tattoo Artistry
Kerry College of Further Education
Animation
Kerry College of Further Education
Silversmithing and Jewellery Design
Central Technical Institute Senior College
Product Design and Manufacture
Central Technical Institute Senior College
Creative Media for Production (Visual Effects / Animation) - Traineeship
Ballyfermot College of Further Education
Digital Illustration and Motion Graphics
Galway Technical Institute
Upholstery and Restoration Skills
Galway Technical Institute
Interior Design
Galway Technical Institute
Illustration & Design
Stillorgan College of Further Education