Some people slog their guts out to get rich, while others find their bank balance exploding thanks to a stroke of good luck. Whether it's a hair brained scheme or scouring thrift stores for items that could be worth a fortune, they may not be realistic pathways to wealth, but these guys certainly had the last laugh!
Here are 10 people who made a fortune thanks to a crazy idea or through luck. What do you think? Do you have any money-making schemes up your sleeve or have you made big bucks thanks to Lady Luck? Feel free to share your views and comments with us below!
1. Take part in an eating show and earn $10,000
Known as Mukbang, eating shows have taken South Korea by storm. They involve nothing more than filming yourself while you eat and posting the video on YouTube with some participants clocking up millions of views. One star is HyuneeEats who has over 400,000 followers and can easily make $10,000 a month by publishing videos of herself eating noodles, burgers, sushi...
2. A $36,000 sweater
Sean and Rikki McEvoy love thrift stores and flea markets. One day Sean spotted a cool sweater and bought it for 50 cents. Some time later Sean found out that the sweater dated back to the 50s and used to be owned by the famous American football star Vince Lombardi Jr. After getting its authenticity verified by experts, the couple decided to sell it at auction and ended up with the princely sum of $36,000!
3. $55,000 to make a potato salad
Zack 'Danger' Brown wanted to make a potato salad and in prankish style decided to start a crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter. His goal was to raise $10, but donors were soon lining up and he ended up with $55,000 in total!
4. Justin Bieber's right shoe sold for over $50,000
During his performance at the Wireless Festival in Germany, Justin Bieber threw his sneakers into the crowd. A young fan caught the right one and promptly auctioned it off on eBay... Over $50,000 later and he was one happy Belieber! No one knows what became of the sneaker, but the left one now has its own Instagram account!
5. A framed screenshot that sold for $90,000
Another eBay auction that raked in a fortune was a framed screenshot of a syllogism by Aristotle that questioned the value of art. Unbelievably eBay bids reached $90,900 within 36 hours! Not bad for a scrap of paper, a 'stolen' quote and a cheap frame!
6. Dried glue that sold for $240,000
UK-based Christopher Herbert was cleaning his apartment when he found a dollop of dried glue that looked like Homer Simpson. He decided to have some fun and put it up for auction on eBay, only to be shocked by the number of bids that came in. Whoever bought it must have been the Simpsons' biggest fan, as this dried dollop of glue was sold for $240,000!
7. The million dollar pixel page
Alex Tew was a student from a humble background who needed money to fund his university education. He created a website with a home page that comprised of a million pixels arranged in a 1000 × 1000 grid. He peddled them for $1 per pixel in 10 × 10 blocks. Purchasers were allowed to post tiny images with a corresponding URL and slogan that was displayed when the cursor was hovered over the link. Within 6 months Alex's site had gone viral and the once impoverished student is now estimated to have a netted almost $1m!
8. Become a millionaire by wearing T-shirts
This was the brainchild of Jason Sadler, who for the past 5 years has made a fortune by simply wearing different T-shirt brands and publishing photos of himself on his social networks. To begin with he charged $1 to wear a branded T-shirt and, much to everyone's surprise, the idea took off and he ended up having to hire 4 more T-shirt wearers! Nowadays Jason is approaching millionaire status and his story has been picked up by the Huffington Post who not only made a documentary about his rise to fame, but also published a story about his money-making idea!
9. A photo of a potato that was sold for $1m!
Kevin Abosch has to be the luckiest photographer on the planet. Why? Because he sold a photo of a potato for $1m! Originally known for his signed portraits of high-profile Silicon Valley executives and celebrities including Dustin Hoffman, it was in 2010 that he came up with his 'potato idea'. Things didn't stop there and in early 2018 his Forever Rose photo sold for an equally mind-boggling sum!
10. Get rich by buying/selling lost luggage
The auction site Wendt auctions lost/unclaimed baggage that's been sitting around in airports for too long. The luggage comprises of suitcases and bags left behind by Lufthansa passengers who haven't bothered to collect their belongings within 3 months. Buyers have the added surprise of not knowing what the luggage contains, so it's a question of pot luck as to whether there's anything interesting or valuable inside!