If you are unable to open a small business due to the costs, another way to be able to sell things is in a market. There are probably some markets already in existence where you live so you could either see if you could set up a stall there or even start up a new movement. This would be something that would take some time to be ready, depending on how many people made or produced local things that they wanted to sell. It is, of course, cheaper than renting or buying a shop and if the whole movement takes off, it could create a lot of interest and support. It would be great to have a market to sell home-made items such as clothes, blankets, ornaments, paintings, jam, pickles, fresh food, things made from recycled items and so on. It could begin maybe by having it once a month then could get more frequent if the demand was there. The idea would be for it to be like car-boot sale where people just sell their old things but to inspire and promote innovation and creativity.
I think a market place is also a good opportunity to strengthen community spirit. It could sell home-made foods and drinks to eat there, have local musicians playing and even other events and games that you may have at an annual fair. I would recommend putting a rule in place for the market that states that nothing made or bought from outside could be sold in the market, like fluffy toys made in China, soft drinks from big companies, etc.
Basically, there are so many ways that you could get the public interested in going there for a very small cost to you. It could really bring a positive vibe to the community.