What Are Artisan Keycaps? Everything You Need To Know

  • Keycaps 101
  • Posted by: admin_hiro
  • Nov 29, 2021

"What are artisan keycaps?" If you are a person with high aesthetics and a collector of beautiful things, then Artisan keycaps will be the most suitable and unique choice for you. So, let's find out all about artisan keycaps right away.

What are artisan keycaps?

Artisan keycaps are custom-made, handcrafted ones made by individual artists or small groups to replace the mass-produced ones on mechanical keyboards. Artisan keycaps provide a striking, personalized touch to mechanical keyboards. 

What are artisan keycaps?
What are artisan keycaps?

Popular for their distinctive patterns, artisan keycaps are available in a variety of materials to suit different tastes. These skilled artisans specialize in creating nature-inspired plastic designs with rich colors and attention to detail. Additionally, woodworkers provide a natural and refined appeal by producing keycaps that highlight the inherent beauty of various types of wood. 

Artisan keycaps made from wood and resin
Artisan keycaps made from wood and resin

Using materials like brass, copper, or aluminum, and frequently using mechanical or steampunk designs, metal craftsmen add longevity and a quality touch to keyboards, making them highly sought-after.

They are usually compatible with Cherry MX switches or other switches with similar stems. They can be mounted on any mechanical keyboard that uses these switches. However, some artisan keycaps may have different profiles or heights than standard keycaps, which can affect the typing feel and ergonomics.

Compatibility of Artisan Keycaps
Compatibility of Artisan Keycaps

Moreover, they are cherished possessions in the world of mechanical keyboards since they not only improve the aesthetics of a keyboard but also exhibit the uniqueness and personalities of their owners.

How are artisan keycaps made?

Artisan keycaps come in diverse materials like resin, wood, metal, clay, and feature various shapes, sizes, colors, and themes such as animals, food, characters, landscapes, or abstract designs to suit different tastes.

Each material has its own advantages and disadvantages in terms of durability, aesthetics, and production methods. 

How are artisan keycaps made?
How are artisan keycaps made?

Resin artisan keycaps

Craftsmen start by conceptualizing the design and may utilize 3D modeling tools to produce detailed designs. The 3D-printed keycaps go through post-processing, including sanding, painting, and meticulous inspection.

  • Design Concept: The design concept is often developed or sketched out using inspiration from numerous themes, characters, or aesthetic concepts.
  • Making Mold: A silicone mold is made based on the design concept. The resin will be produced using the mold to reproduce the keycap's form and features.
  • Resin Preparation: The main component of an artisan keycap is a 2-part liquid synthetic resin that is colored or added to before being placed into the mold.
  • Placing Shots: After the mold is ready, the craftsmen pour the ready-made resin into its cavities.
  • Curving: Avoid using any equipment and depend only on gravity to help the resin fill the mold components.
  • Finishing: After being demolded, craftsmen clean and polish the keycaps to give them a gleaming look.

Discover the fascinating skill of making resin artisan keycaps in action! Check out our video below to see the amazing procedure in action.

Wood artisan keycaps

Wood is a natural and organic material that can give artisan keycaps a warm and rustic look. Wood can be carved, cut, or engraved to create different patterns or designs. Wood can also be combined with resin to create hybrid keycaps that have both materials.

Wood artisan keycaps
Wood artisan keycaps

Metal artisan keycaps

Metal is a hard and shiny material that can give artisan keycaps a sleek and premium look. Metal can be cast, forged, or machined to create different shapes or forms. Metal can also be polished, painted, or plated to create different finishes or colors. Metal may be more expensive and difficult to work with than resin or clay.

Metal artisan keycaps
Metal artisan keycaps

Clay artisan keycaps

Clay is a malleable material that can be easily shaped and resized due to its soft and flexible nature. An artisan keycap's master sculpt is frequently made out of clay before being used to produce a silicone mold for resin casting. The final keycap can alternatively be made from clay by baking or curing it; however, it might not be as resilient or compatible as resin.

  • Sculpting: The maker uses polymer clay to mold, shape, and sculpt the keycap by hand. Specific sculpting tools improve the keycap's overall aesthetic and accuracy
  • Baking: After sculpting, the clay keycap undergoes a careful baking process in an oven to cure and firm it. This step ensures that the keycap retains its shape throughout the rest of the process.
  • Painting and Coloring: Artists use acrylic paints or other coloring materials to add vibrant colors to the design. The artist carefully adds the paint layer by layer to achieve the desired appearance.
  • Clear Coating: A clear coating or resin is often applied to protect the surface and create a glossy finish. This helps to ensure that the paint doesn't peel or fade with age, providing long-lasting durability.
  • Finish: Once the clay artisan keycap is finished, it is skillfully wrapped and made available for purchase or distribution.

Are you interested in seeing the fascinating process of creating handcrafted keycaps? View our engrossing video to learn more about the realm of artisan keyboard creation.

Want to discover the best keycap material for your dream keyboard? Unlock the secrets of keycap materials and elevate your typing experience to a whole new level right away.

Are handmade keycaps worth buying?

Individuals who appreciate unique and inventive designs for their mechanical keyboard arrangement may consider investing in handmade keycaps as a worthwhile option. These one-of-a-kind pieces offer aesthetic appeal and craftsmanship that mass-produced keycaps may not match.

Pros Cons
  • Unique product
  • Using premium materials
  • Exquisitely detailed designs
  • High standards for quality and accuracy
  • Increase typing comfort and fatigue reduction
  • High cost
  • Limited availability
  • Long production periods
  • May not be compatible with all keyboard layouts and switches

Pros of artisan keycaps

We’ve answered what are artisan keycaps, now, let’s explore why they’re so highly sought-after.

Aesthetically pleasing

This is undoubtedly the most significant benefit of such built-to-order keycaps artisan. They look great, period. 

Custom Pokemon artisan keycaps
Custom Pokemon artisan keycap | Hirosart

However, the satisfaction that stems from that is unmeasurable. You can find significant endorphins uplift just from looking at them, and they can improve your work tremendously as a result. If you want to give your keyboard a new look, you can also choose 3D printed keycaps.

Speed typing

It might seem like a stretch, but these custom keysets can help with typing. The surface of said keycaps is instantly recognizable and can help the typer know where their hand is.

Protective layer

As the cap key on top of each key, it can double as a protective measure for your mechanical keyboard. The keycaps might be an excellent option to lengthen your keyboard lifespan if you're a heavy user.   

Cons of artisan keycaps

You need to consider a few factors before adopting these custom keysets. 

Sizing complication

To begin with, the keycaps can be a touch tacky. However, until they're installed on our keyboard, we can't always determine how thick and chunky they'll look. Because you choose the keycap, this is partly your fault.

Be aware that an enormous cap may appear odd and make typing difficult if it is too wide to fit correctly in your layout.


Another disadvantage is that these keycaps might be highly costly. They are handcrafted, with only a few units available, and are often produced to request. Of course, you get what you pay for, but it doesn't make the payment any easier to swallow.

On the low end, custom artisan keycaps can cost as little as $20, while on the high end, they can cost as much as $100-$200. Depending on the quality and rarity, some are much more valuable.

That's almost certainly more than the rest of your keyboard.

Artisan Keycaps vs Regular Keycaps

Artisan Keycaps Regular Keycaps
Creative and unique designs Simple designs
Using premium materials Standardized materials
Limited quantities Available goods
High-cost Affordable cost
Comfortable typing experience Consistent and familiar typing feel

Artisan keycaps are renowned for their aesthetic value, workmanship, and customization, while normal keycaps provide practical and conventional keycap solutions at more affordable costs.

Individual tastes determine whether to use artisan or standard keycaps, with artisan keycaps appealing to those looking to add a distinctive and personalized touch to their mechanical keyboards.

How do you use artisan keycaps?

Simply put, you can just put them on your intended keys. If your artisan keys are very delicate, you might have to break your keyboard down safely before installing the keycap. 

Choosing the right keycaps for your setup

Here is a step-by-step guideline for finding the best artisan keycaps for your setups.

First, you need to measure your keyboard form. In other words, find out how many keycaps you will need to fill your full, tenkeyless, or 60% keyboard.

The next thing on the list is to profile your keyboard in terms of lightning. Of course, if your keyboard is backlit with RGB, pudding caps and double-shot caps will be your best choices here. Otherwise, single-shot keycaps should do their job.

Then, we’re going to shop for the keycaps in the preferred family. Interestingly, Cherry profiles are best for gaming and typing experiences, while OEM counterparts are the industry standard. Learn more about keycap profiles and how they benefit your usage in typing, gaming, and programming here.

In addition, you should also pay attention to keycap materials. Rule of thumb: 

  • ABS-made: Cheap. Abundant. Not durable. Fade quickly.
  • PBT-made: Pricey-er. Durable. Exclusive.  

Now, it’s time to find your next keycap venture at the following websites.

Where to buy artisan keycaps?

Discover the best places to buy artisan keycaps and elevate your typing experience with unique and handcrafted designs. There are several stores where you can buy artisan keycaps listed below.

Reddit ArtisanMacro

Through different subreddits devoted to mechanical keyboards, you may get helpful insights and links to reputable merchants and suppliers. Reddit's community is a great resource for debates, group purchases, and information about artisan keycaps.

Artisan keycaps on Reddit ArtisanMacro
Artisan keycaps on Reddit ArtisanMacro


You might be able to find handmade keycaps on websites like Etsy, a marketplace for independent craftspeople, or other websites aimed at fans of mechanical keyboards.

Artisan keycaps on Etsy
Artisan keycaps on Etsy


Some handmade keycap makers can also sell their products on Amazon, one of the largest online stores on the market, providing an additional channel for customers to access their work.

Artisan keycaps on Amazon
Artisan keycaps on Amazon


For keyboard fans looking to spruce up their configurations with one-of-a-kind and creative embellishments, purchasing artisan keycaps on eBay provides wide and varied choices. eBay offers a forum for well-known craftsmen and up-and-coming producers to display their work.

Artisan keycaps on eBay
Artisan keycaps on eBay


Mechanicalkeyboards.com provide a dedicated and dependable platform for keyboard fans to browse a wide variety of distinctive and handcrafted keycaps. Mechanicalkeyboards.com, a specialist shop, works with several craftspeople to provide customers access to coveted designs and limited-edition products. 

Artisan keycaps on Mechanicalkeyboards
Artisan keycaps on Mechanicalkeyboards


Purchasing handcrafted keycaps from Hirosart.com gives a pleasant voyage into the world of keyboard artwork. Hirosart offers a mesmerizing selection of painstakingly planned and exquisitely made keycaps. 

  • There are many models, regularly updated according to trends
  • Can be customized as you like
  • 100% handmade by Vietnamese artisans, bringing high collectible value
  • User-friendly and appealing web interface
  • Competitive price and big promotion
Artisan keycaps on Hirosart
Artisan keycaps on Hirosart


Geekhack, a well-known community for mechanical keyboards, facilitates group purchases, sales, and conversations about artisan keycaps. The latest works of craftsmen and producers are displayed here, providing collectors and enthusiasts with unique and limited-edition designs

Artisan keycaps on Geekhack
Artisan keycaps on Geekhack

Explore the best places to buy artisan keycaps and discover a world of creativity for your mechanical keyboard! Check out our comprehensive guide and find unique and captivating keycaps to elevate your typing experience right here.

Artisan keycap buying tips

To ensure a satisfactory and joyful shopping experience while purchasing handmade keycaps, take into account the following tips.

Artisan keycap buying tips
Artisan keycap buying tips

Explore Artisan Keycap Artists

Spend some time learning about the numerous artisan keycap producers and their creations. Discover a variety of possibilities by surfing various websites, forums, and social media channels.

Research Keycap Compatibility

Switch type, keyboard layout, keycap profile, stem compatibility, and modifier keys are a few things to think about to make sure everything fits well. Check to see if the keycaps fit your keyboard's key rows and sizes, including the Numpad and function keys.

Discover the world of keycaps and their universality to find the best keycaps for your keyboards! Let's dive into the fascinating world of artisan keycaps right away.

Consider Keycap Material

Take note of the components and level of craftsmanship involved. High-quality materials and attention to detail can significantly impact the overall aesthetics and durability of the keycaps.

Limited Edition and Group Buy Opportunities

Watch for group buying opportunities and limited edition releases. These frequently provide customers with access to special keycaps with rare designs.

Sound test

Users may customize their configurations to suit their preferences for keyboard sound and feel by performing sound testing and making educated judgments regarding switch selection and keycap materials.

Budget and Pricing

Set a budget before you start buying. Handmade keycaps can vary greatly in price because of their designs and materials, so paying attention to your budget and the price of keycaps will help you make a choice that fits your budget.

Quality and Craftsmanship

Seek out craftsmen who have a track record of producing goods of the highest caliber. Look at the accuracy, attention to detail, and use of high-quality materials in their keycaps.


We have provided specific and relevant information to answer the question, "What are artisan keycaps?" for you. Artisan keycaps elevate the typing experience to a new degree of enjoyment by focusing on quality and creativity to convert keyboards into unique works of art. They have captured the hearts of enthusiasts and collectors all around the world, embodying the devotion and talent of the craftspeople who created them. 


What are artisan keycaps for?

Artisan keycaps elevate the aesthetics and customize the mechanical keyboard. Users may design a keyboard experience that is both visually appealing and a reflection of their individual style and personality using artisan keycaps.

How much do artisan keycaps cost?

Artisan keycaps can range from $10.50 to $150 per piece or set, depending on the design, material, quality, and rarity of the keycap.

How do you use artisan keycaps?

To replace your original keycap with an artisan keycap, use a keycap puller tool. Ensure the artisan keycap fits your keyboard layout and switch type before purchasing. Since artisan keycaps are made to work with common mechanical switches, you can easily swap them out to give your keyboard a unique look.

Are artisan keycaps comfortable to type on?

Yes. Artisan keycaps may not be as comfortable as regular keycaps for typing, especially if they have irregular shapes, textures, or heights. Some artisan keycaps are more suitable for decorative purposes or for rarely used keys, such as ESC or spacebar. However, some people may enjoy the aesthetic and tactile feel of artisan keycaps and find them comfortable enough for typing.

What are the best artisan keycap brands?

Some popular names in the community include Hirosart, Jelly Key, RAMA Works, KeyLabs, and many others. Each brand has a distinct aesthetic and designs that appeal to various preferences.

What makes artisan keycaps sought-after?

The uniqueness and scarcity of artisan keycaps make them desirable. The painstaking craftsmanship that goes into each keycap makes them valued collectibles among keyboard fans. 

What materials are used for these keycaps?

Various materials, including clay, metal, wood, resin, and other materials, are used to make artisan keycaps. Each material offers a unique experience and aesthetic qualities. The keycaps' appearance and feel may be greatly influenced by the material selection.