• Advice

8 Kickstarter Projects that Prove Innovation and Invention Aren't Dead

As a creative freelancer, you probably have a project you’ve kept on the shelf because you don’t have the funds to make it a reality. Is now the time to bring your creativity to life?

In 2013, 3 million people pledged $480 million to projects on Kickstarter. That’s more than $900 a minute. Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and other crowdfunding platforms have gotten a lot of press in 2013, and I expect that 2014 will be the year crowdfunding exits “exciting but maybe flash-in-the-pan” stage and becomes a common way independent creative types get stuff done.

Here are eight independent designers, artists, inventors, bakers, students, and small business owners looking to do what they love and get their projects off the ground. Maybe it’ll inspire you to kick start your own….


A better cat toy that responds to your cat. You know we like cats.

Bee & Bounty Lucky #6 Campaign

A small, family-run apiary (honey bee farm) in California is looking for help opening more hives using sustainable beekeeping practices. Freelancers Union is a special fan of this “fuzzy, wondrous, and industrious insect” (see logo), and if you’ve heard anything about the honey bee crisis, you know this is something we should all support.


I promise this is not just another thing about cats. Four undergrads from University of Massachusetts -- Lowell have created a product that:

  • Charges your phone
  • Notifies you if you forget to bring something with you into your car (like your wallet)
  • Uses your smartphone to check on the location of things you tag (like cats)
  • Can navigate you to your lost item with your smartphone

High five, barely-adult entrepreneurs.

Eight of Diamonds

An independent jewelry designer from Australia sells his unique gem-shaped necklace designs.

The Floyd Leg

At a time when we’re moving more than ever, how smart to take the legs of your table with you and find reclaimed wood (an old door, a board) as the table top! Turn any flat surface into a table with these four adjustable table legs.

The Palladium Gun: Rubber Band Gun

Clearly, hitting your kid brother with a thumb-and-forefinger gun is passe. Upgrade to this quick-fire rubber band gun designed by a student at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Shepherd: a comic book adventure

This 24-page, one-shot comic book adventure set in a distant world by artists and writers Nathan Sage and Ron Joseph is quite simply stunning. Support independent artists looking to bring a world “filled with diverse creatures and a wealth of civilizations past and present” to life.

Makeshift Society

We couldn’t pass this one by, even though it was already fully funded in November. It’s a coworking space and community for creative entrepreneurs. We love to see freelancers coming together. Go them!

Freelancers, would you ever consider raising capital for a creative project on Kickstarter?