How do Kickstarter project?

Fill in the blank. Creators have asked us about building and engaging their communities, championing through the “plateau” phase, how they can create rewards that’ll excite backers, and more. Below, we’ve answered these questions and more with pointed advice and links to our best and most relevant resources that tackle those questions. Find the questions that have been on your mind and then read, click, and download to get the answers you need to take your project to the next step.

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Kickstarter's Future Fab Lab and More at the 2016 World Maker Faire

Kickstarter’s devotion to creative projects means we’re always on the lookout for groundbreaking tools that open up radical new possibilities for designers, artists, and makers of all stripes. And at this weekend’s World Maker Faire at the New York Hall of Science, we’ll present The Future Fablab: a collection of machines that turn our digital dreams into physical reality. This diverse array of Kickstarted technology translates processes typically found on factory floors to your desktop, automating everything from circuit-board assembly to metal cutting. We’re honored to be working with this wildly innovative group of creators and can’t wait to see what new projects makers create — and maybe even Kickstart — with their marvelous inventions.

Here’s a roundup of what you’ll find at our booth, a pair of talks from Kickstarter creators, and a small sampling of the dozens of Kickstarted projects that will be on display at this gathering of artists, technologists, and creative curiosity seekers.

The Kickstarter Future Fab Lab 

An accessible desktop waterjet that cuts through materials ranging from titanium to carbon fiber.


Building a family of mini-machines, beginning with the FormBox, a desktop vacuum former.


Mr Beam 
A laser cutter and engraver that works with a variety of materials and sports an onboard camera to make setup a snap.


Gravity Sketch
Beginner-friendly design software that lets you convert a simple sketch into a 3D model with ease.


A personal fabrication system covering everything from 3D printing to laser engraving using a single robotic arm.

Kickstarter Talks

Creative Tools That Inspire Making
When makers create tools that empower and inspire others to make things, they kick off a virtuous cycle. Join us for a conversation with Kickstarter creators who have built a diverse set of tools that are expanding the worlds of making and creativity.

Panelists: Julio Terra, Alex Klein, Daniela Paredes, Alroy Almeida

Making Tools for a Future Fab Lab
A new generation of digital fabrication tools is coming to life on Kickstarter. We’ll hear from three Kickstarter creators who are pushing the boundaries in this field, creating remarkable machines that bring processes typically found on factory floors to your desktop.

Panelists: Zach Dunham, Teja Philipp, Alex Smilansky, Nisan Lerea

Kickstarter Projects to Explore

Massimo Banzi’s open-source Arduino platform sparked a DIY hardware revolution. Now he’s bringing the same user-friendly approach to designing connected devices with the new ESLOV system.


Alex Klein’s beautifully simple Kano Computer Kit inspired young people all over the world to explore technology and programming in exciting, hands-on ways. Kano’s new creative computing kits let aspiring hardware hackers explore light, sound, and physical interaction.


Renowned kinetic sculptor Bruce Shapiro’s mesmerizing tables feature hidden mechanisms that magnetically guide steel balls as they draw delicate, mandala-like designs in sand.


Natasha Dzurny’s gorgeous paper-circuit kits allow crafters to explore electronics as they assemble glowing LED-embellished flowers and clever pop-up holiday cards.

New York City’s yearly international-street-band festival curates the World MakerFaire’s musical program, sending raucous brass bands marching among the exhibitors.

Introducing the Creative Independent

This morning Kickstarter launched a new project that we’re very excited about: The Creative Independent.

The Creative Independent is a new resource of emotional and practical guidance for creative people. 

Each weekday The Creative Independent will publish one essay or interview from an established or emerging artist in which they discuss their practice, their process, and the struggles and triumphs that come with it. The Creative Independent is unique in that 100% of its content will come from practicing artists and creators. Over time we hope to amass a kind of oral history of the creative process that can be searched and consulted to help educate and inspire those who create or dream of creating. 

The project launched today with a piece by the poet Eileen Myles.

In the coming days we’ll publish pieces with artists like Ian Mackaye, Björk, Leiomy Maldonado, Shantell Martin, and Philip Glass. 

The Creative Independent is led by Brandon Stosuy. Previously Brandon led Editorial Operations at Pitchfork, and he is a music curator for MoMA PS1, National Sawdust, and the Broad Museum. He is also a published author and an artistic collaborator with Matthew Barney. 

Filling out The Creative Independent team are a wonderful collection of individuals and creators: Laurel Schwulst as Creative Director, T. Cole Rachel as Senior Editor, Charlotte Zoller as Director of Community Engagement, and Hannah Elliott as TCI’s intern. It’s been a pleasure to collaborate with them. 

The Creative Independent can be found online here. It exists in the physical world, too. We’ll host a series of live conversations with artists, authors, filmmakers, musicians, dancers, poets, playwrights, and others. To be notified about upcoming events, you can sign up here

Thanks for reading and participating in this project. We hope you enjoy. 

Kickstarter at the London Design Festival

Though its architecture dates back to the eleventh century, London is at the forefront of contemporary design  —  a distinction it showcases every year during the week-long London Design Festival. The citywide celebration will take place this 17–25 September and features the works of a diverse array of forward-thinking designers, many of whom have brought their creative visions to life with Kickstarter. Whether you dream of weaving with an automatic knitting machine or are genetically predisposed to want your own portable DNA lab, there are wonders to explore around every corner. Here are some of the exhibits and events that feature innovative, inspiring projects from Kickstarter’s thriving Design community:

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Kickstarting Exploration at Dent:Space



For decades, space exploration has been the domain of government agencies and academic institutions. In other words, you did have to be a rocket scientist to take part. But that’s all changing. With an increasing number of private space missions and a groundswell in community-driven — and Kickstarter-funded — innovation happening in science and exploration, there are more opportunities than ever to participate. This democratization will be celebrated September 21–22, 2016, at San Francisco’s Dent:Space, an eagerly anticipated gathering of those involved with the technological, artistic, commercial, scientific, educational, and DIY aspects of space exploration.

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Kickstarter Advice from Webcomic Creator and Publisher IronSpike

C. Spike Trotman is in the business of comics. Both a nine-time Kickstarter creator and founder of Iron Circus Comics, Chicago’s largest comics publisher, she fully understands the webcomics business model. In our latest Creator Hangout, she shares helpful tips on how to successfully fund your project, connect with your fanbase, and ship your rewards on time. According to Spike, “I had a lot of faith in the platform because Kickstarter was formalizing and making transparent what cartoonists had already been doing for years”. We’ve pulled out our favorite quotes from the interview; make sure to watch the full video here!

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We’re now open to creators in Hong Kong & Singapore!

We've always admired the artists and innovators from Asia who have joined the Kickstarter community to bring their projects to life. And, notably, we've been overwhelmed by the passionate backer communities in Hong Kong and Singapore, who have pledged over 300,000 times to more than 40,000 creative projects around the world. 

Today, we're making it easier for creators in Hong Kong and Singapore to launch projects from their home countries by officially opening up Kickstarter to creators there. Backers around the world will see more creative and innovative projects emerge — and local backers will be able to take advantage of experiential rewards like attending a film screening or going to the opening night of a new restaurant. 

We’ve created a Facebook group for creators looking for help, and recently put together this FAQ based on questions we’ve received. 

To kick things off, we're proud to highlight a few projects that are now live. From the work of a 13-year-old Singaporean inventor looking to change the world to a conceptual cookbook from one of the oldest and most active independent art institutions in Asia, we're humbled and excited to see how creators will tap into the Kickstarter community.

The GIY Stick: Let nature self-water your pots.

With a vision to “make concrete jungles fertile,” Dylan Soh, a 13-year-old inventor, and his dad created the ultra-simple Grow It Yourself (GIY) Stick. The device requires no apps or pumps, and simply uses recycled bottles and fabric to keep your plants hydrated and healthy.


The Unappropriated Recipes: Para Site's First Cookbook

From Para Site, one of oldest and most active independent art institutions in Asia, this conceptual cookbook reveals the raw and fresh perspectives of Hong Kong. This project is endorsed by Art Basel, as part of the partnership we have to catalyze much-needed support for outstanding non-profit arts organizations worldwide.


URI Led Light Bulb I Modern Lamp Design for Home Interior

These gorgeously futuristic and minimalist LED lightbulbs are created using intricately laser-cut acrylic patterns.


Hydra — Your Plant Care Companion

As his university schedule got increasingly busy, design student Brian Ong invented a watering automation system for his languishing plants. With the ability to water 10 or more plants, Hydra is a simple plant care system that Brian is now sharing with fellow indoor gardeners.


CROZ D.I.Y Digital Camera — Simple. Stylish. Iconic

CROZ is a slim, transparent digital camera with a specially designed acrylic casing.


As more creators launch their projects, you’ll find more projects from Singapore here and Hong Kong here.

A few reminders on how projects from these countries will work: 

Backers from around the world can support any project, including those from Hong Kong and Singapore, on Kickstarter with any Visa, MasterCard, or American Express card. 

Creators can now set their projects’ funding goals in HKD and SGD, and set up their accounts using local banking and business details. When projects are successfully funded, pledges will be collected in HKD and SGD. Similar to any project not listed in U.S. dollars, when looking at project pages, backers based in the U.S. will see the project’s goal displayed in USD. They'll also see reward tiers listed in U.S. dollars, with the HKD and SGD alongside.