People started many hobbies during the pandemic. Some have taken up baking, others have gone back to playing video games from childhood, and many have started working out at home. However, there is a hobby that exploded to new proportions during the pandemic, and it was something that industry experts did not expect: miniature collections.
Miniatures used to be a cliche market and something that was not taken seriously by many. However, the pandemic has seen a massive resurgence in miniature collecting, with people of all ages joining in on the hobby. For example, Games Workshop experienced a surge in sales during the pandemic and has the possibility of earning more than Google in the next few years.
There are many reasons for the sudden popularity of miniatures. For one, they are relatively small and do not take up much space. This is important when people are stuck at home and do not have a lot of extra room to dedicate to new hobbies. In addition, miniatures can be very affordable, which is another appeal during these economically challenging times.
Miniatures are also highly customizable, and painting them can be therapeutic, especially against anxiety. However, miniatures can be pretty expensive. Here are five ways to start your miniature collection without breaking the bank.
Concentrate on Your Niche
First and foremost, you should focus on the type of miniatures you are interested in. Do you want to collect medieval figures? Or are you more interested in collecting Star Wars memorabilia?
There are many different types of miniatures available, and it can be easy to get overwhelmed. However, finding the right miniatures for your collection will be much easier once you have decided on your niche.
Check Out Local Stores and Flea Markets
Many experts in the field suggest that amateurs first start looking into local stores or flea markets for a bargain. It’s something that they need to do early on in the hobby.
This process can help amateur collectors discern between a good deal and a rip-off. Often, local stores will have a few hidden gems waiting to be discovered by the right person. Flea markets may even contain rare collectible minis that they are willing to sell for less than their asking price. You can profit by purchasing these minis, restoring them, and selling them in the future.
It’s also good to have a good relationship with your local minis store as they can help you find the right deals you need.
Keep an Eye Out for Sales Online
There are also many sales online, especially given the recent popularity of miniature collecting. However, it is essential to be careful when buying miniatures online. There are many scams and fake products out there. Therefore, it is necessary to do your research before purchasing anything.
Some good places to look for sales include Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. These platforms are all reputable and have buyer protection policies to ensure you are getting what you paid for.
Print Your Own
With the rise of 3d printing, it is now possible to print your miniatures at home. This is an excellent option for those on a budget or who want to create their unique miniatures.
Many websites offer free or paid 3d models you can print at home. However, it is essential to note that not all of these sites are reputable. Therefore, it is essential to do your research before downloading any files.
In addition, you will need to invest in a 3d printer and the necessary materials. This can be expensive up front, but it will save you money in the long run. You’ll also need something to mold the resin or plastic you’re using. That’s because sometimes 3d printed miniatures don’t come out the right way. Having custom injection molding in your arsenal can help with this. It can make the entire process easier to do. It can also be more accurate than trying to do it by hand.
Join a Community or Forum
Another great way to start your mini collection is to join a community or forum. Here, you can learn from more experienced collectors and get advice on finding good deals, starting a collection, and what to avoid.
In addition, these communities can also be a great place to sell unwanted miniatures or trade with other collectors. This is a great way to grow your collection without spending any money.
These are just a few ways to start your miniature collection without breaking the bank. With a little effort and patience, you can amass a large and impressive collection that will envy all your friends.