Handmade or Hand made? (Correct Spelling Explained)

“Handmade” things show a great deal of care has gone into crafting them. We should also show this same level of care when writing it. We need to know whether it’s one or two words, and this article will explain it all to you.

Handmade vs. Hand made

“Handmade” is only ever correct as one word. Whenever we want to use it as an adjective, we will write it in this way to show that it’s modifying another noun. There are no related reasons that make “hand made” correct, so it’s best to avoid using it.

Handmade or Hand made?

According to Google Ngram Viewer, “handmade” is by far the most popular choice of the two. This shows that it’s the one you should stick to using in any case. The graph trends allow us to see which is the grammatically correct variation.

Handmade or Hand made - Statistics

With that said, there seems to be some common usage of “hand made,” and it would help to understand why. It’s not correct as an adjective form, but certain sentences might cause it to appear. For example:

  • That’s the hole in the wall that my hand made.

While it’s not a common way to say it, we can write “hand made” in some cases. However, these cases do not apply to this article, so we will treat it as incorrect from now on.

We can use the entries from The Cambridge Dictionary and The Oxford Dictionary to learn that “handmade” is only ever correct as one word. Both dictionaries define it as an adjective in this form.

Interestingly, both dictionaries also mention that “hand-made” would be correct if it were hyphenated. However, there is no mention of “Hand made” as two words.

Is “Handmade” One Word?

“Handmade” is one word. We use it in this form when it’s an adjective. It stems from the hyphenation rules that we can learn from AP Style, and it’s good to understand that a compound adjective is created when made of multiple words.

The AP Stylebook allows us to use hyphens as linkers between words. When one or more words are used to modify the same noun, a hyphen acts as a bridge between them.

However, to simplify the language further, we can sometimes drop this hyphen and group the words without a space. This only works when there’s a clear and pronounceable distinction between the two words. That’s why “Handmade” works as one word.

Here are some examples to help you with it:

  1. All of these wares are handmade by yours truly, so I’d appreciate it if you didn’t insult me.
  2. These are handmade, which is why they’re so much more expensive. I can’t think of a reason not to get them, though.
  3. They’re not handmade, even though the sticker claims they are. I don’t think it’s worth shopping here anymore.
  4. If you’d like to try some handmade crafts, why don’t you check out one of the local classes at the community college?

Is “Hand made” Two Words?

“Hand made” is never correct as two words when we want to use it as an adjective. We cannot write it in this form because it does not show that the two words modify the following noun. Instead, it only allows “hand” to modify “made,” which isn’t enough information.

These helpful examples should clear things up:

  • Correct: We should look into handmade kits that will allow us to explore our creative sides a little better.
  • Incorrect: This isn’t hand made, but I’m sure I could find a way to make it so! I’ll make sure it’s worth the money.
  • Correct: Have you got any handmade items in this store? I want to see the kind of talent you’re working with.
  • Incorrect: It’s not a hand made product, but I’ll try better next time to make it work. Sorry for disappointing you.

Tip To Remember The Difference

At this stage, we usually refer you to a quick tip to help you understand the difference. This tip will help you to understand why the one-word form works better than the two-word form.

“Handmade” things require a lot of care and effort. We usually create handmade things by putting lots of pieces together. Therefore, it makes sense to also put the two words together whenever we write about them to ensure we are always correct.