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crafts, fabrics and haberdashery.

(5 Posts)
mrsb87 Fri 02-May-14 08:11:39

Hi everyone! I'm 19wks pregnant and thinking about the my future in work etc. I currently work in a fashion retail shop as a supervisor. The hours can be erratic some weeks with late nights expected of you outside your contracted hours. I'm worried this isn't going to be compatible with raising a family and would like to start up my own business.
I have always been handy with a sewing machine and have recently taught myself to crochet! I often make my own crafts such as tablet cases, phone cases, cushions and baby blankets. I have put pictures up on Facebook and friends have always taken a lot of interest and asked how much I would sell for which leads me to think there could be a market for this.
I would like to set up my own business starting online selling my handmade crafts, fabrics and haberdashery items but have no idea where to start! Any help and a advice gratefully received!

Shallan Fri 02-May-14 08:40:11

Take a look at etsy - they have a good selling platform and I gather they're pretty easy to use for your kind of setup. It will also give you a good sense of the competition and normal range of products/prices.

May also be worth looking at local markets/craft fairs to hire a stall and sell directly.

Not wanting to put a downer on it, but be aware there is a lot of competition now in this sector! May help if you have a particular niche/idea, or can adapt your crafts to follow fashions.

mrsb87 Fri 02-May-14 08:46:11

Yes there is a lot of competition! Especially with the crafts side of things which is why I thought selling the fabrics and haberdashery items would help as they don't have any other costs than getting them from the wholesalers.

LondonJen Fri 02-May-14 11:28:35

Hia MrsB I thought I'd pop over from the October thread as I set up my own business selling jewellery I make. It's really hard to make a living and takes a long time to bring in any decent cash but I am hoping (first baby) that it will be worth it for the family benefits you mention.

Selling online can be great and you can start as big or small as you like, meaning you don't have to have a huge financial outlay and you don't need all the stock ready, you can just make to order (that's what I do.) On the other hand as PP has said there is A LOT of competition so you need to make your product offering stand out.

I never had any luck on Etsy myself. It is quite a big market place so easy to disappear into the vast amount of listings. However, it's not expensive to give it a try. I think, though this may have changed, that you can have a shop on facebook? Or make your 'page' have a shopping basket or something. Also there is Folksy which is like Etsy but only for uk sellers so is smaller. I started with my own website (wouldn't recommend, costs too much) and then I joined not on the high street.

Local fayres work for some people (I didn't find it to be the case) but then you'll need more stock for your table etc

You've said friends ask how much you would charge so I would say start with some costings. How much would you need to charge in order to make a decent return? Try to find out if people would pay that. How many would you need to sell to make it worthwhile? Have a look on Etsy and Folsy to see what other people are selling for price wise and whether they sell very many (you can see their sold items.)

Good luck!

mrsb87 Fri 02-May-14 17:06:11

Thanks london! I'm starting to get some research together and start talking to people who start a business from home

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