Kickstarter And Crowd Funding, Explained

With some of my research trips now taking shape I’ve decided to explain why I’ve decided to use kickstarter to fund the bigger aspects of my research project but I also want to explain exactly what kickstarter is, since to be honest it’s a fairly new system, even in internet terms!

When I first had the idea for my research project I knew I wanted to visit certain big museums and sites to see what they had to offer and use their collections as much as I could but I knew it was going to eventually get expensive. (I don’t drive and the cost of travelling by train in the U.K can start to build up)

At first I decided to look into large creative organisations such as Creative Scotland, Business Gateway and Arts Trust Scotland, each of whom offer various forms of funding available to apply for.

I decided to apply for the biggest grant I could get which was the Artists’ Bursaries from Creative Scotland at the beginning of the year. Despite getting through to the second stages I was ultimately unsuccessful. At the same time I applied for an Arts Trust grant, with very low expectations as they have a very high application rate and very high standard. However, this time I did get through! Although they didn’t agree to fund my whole project I did get a bit of money towards it, which made starting the initial stages and visits of my research possible.

Since I still didn’t really have enough funding to go everywhere I wanted I started thinking of sources of funding.

I was inspired by various people who were successful at using Kickstarter and Indiegogo (another crowd funding platform) and decided to try my luck there. Unfortunately the launch of my first campaign on Kickstarter coincided dramatically with an incredibly stressful period of my life and I wasn’t able to put as much effort into promoting as I wanted to or had planned and it was ultimately unsuccessful.

But since life has settled down a bit I thought it was the perfect time to try again with crowd funding. I looked at my campaign proposal again and edited and added to it until I was happy to re-launch.   

So what exactly is Kickstarter?

This bit I’m taking from the Wikipedia page and the Kickstarter page as they explain it a bit better than I could.

From Wikipedia:

“Kickstarter is one of a number of crowdfunding platforms for gathering money from the public, which circumvents traditional avenues of investment. Project creators choose a deadline and a minimum funding goal. If the goal is not met by the deadline, no funds are collected, a kind of assurance contract Money pledged by donors is collected using Amazon Payments. The platform is open to backers from anywhere in the world and to creators from the US, UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.”

From Kickstarter:


Kickstarter is for creative projects.

We host projects from the worlds of Art, Comics, Crafts, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film & Video, Food, Games, Journalism, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology, and Theater. We built Kickstarter to serve creative projects and the artists, designers, and creative people who make them.


All-or-nothing funding works.

All-or-nothing funding protects creators from being stuck with a fraction of the funds they need and an audience expecting fully funded results. By minimizing risk, it also makes backers more likely to pledge. Incredibly, nearly half of all projects on Kickstarter have been successfully funded (64,749 so far!). No other funding method comes close.


People love backing projects.

Everyone loves being a part of creating something new. Millions of people have jumped in to support creators on Kickstarter. They’ve gotten some great rewards and a unique look into the creator’s process in return. It’s about more than money. It’s people making something together.

So what is a crowd funding platform?

From Wikipedia:

Crowdfunding is the collection of finance from backers—the “crowd”—to fund an initiative and usually occurs on Internet platforms. The initiative could be a nonprofit (e.g. to raise funds for a school or social service organization), political (to support a candidate or political party), charitable (e.g. emergency funds for an ill person or to fund a critical operation), commercial (e.g. to create and sell a new product) or financing campaign for a startup company. One crowdfunding expert described it as “the practice of raising funds from two or more people over the internet towards a common Service, Project, Product, Investment, Cause, and Experience or SPPICE.”

Essentially, in order to complete the project I need help from other people to fund my research visits and activities. The reasons why I wanted to do this research was initially because I just love researching things like this but also to inform my own knowledge and sewing work but I also, ultimately want my research to be available to others in order to inform their work or even interest in this particular area.

Crowd funding seemed like a good way of both getting the funds I need and get people involved in my research and connecting with the people who may be interested in said research.

In addition to the benefits for me, a crowd funding platform allows me to offer great rewards and “perks” (basically presents to say thanks) to those who decide to support me financially.

So that’s that 😀 hopefully things are a bit clearer for those who didn’t really know what kickstarter is or how crowd funding works.

If, after all that you feel like being generous and supporting me in my campaign here is a link to my lovely project page!



https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/wednesdayschildis/clothing-the-workers-researching-victorian-clothin/widget/video.html



Well I’ll be updating again soon but,

Until then

See you in the future! ♥

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