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Thursday, 25 July 2013

How to start a stitching business that can make you a millionaire?

Well, I'm not talking about a gold sewing machine studded with diamonds here. But, a normal one that can help you sew and sew till you become a millionaire.

When I was a kid, my mom used to run a stitching unit at home. Apart from her, there were 6 more ladies who enjoyed stitching. They used to stitch blouses for sarees mainly. Later, they tried hands on sewing frocks too. We had around 3 sewing machines and a few more ladies used to learn stitching and embroidery from there. Somehow, when we moved out of that location mom lost interest in running the same and it stopped.

Having experienced that enthusiasm, I can say that a stitching unit can keep any woman with a flair for stitching engaged. Every time I step into a tailor to get my dress stitched, I get inspired to own something similar.

With the rising fashion sense and changing trends, a tailoring unit can always succeed to fetch clients. A state-of-art sewing machine and a heart to put in your best along with effective time management is the key to venture into a tailoring unit. And yes, you can turn your passion to profession right from the comfort of your home. 

Thinking of starting a stitching unit at home?

You can straight away get started with a stitching service from home if you have a sewing machine. Plan in advance about what time of the day you can devote for stitching and see in practicality how much time is required to finish a moderate stitching assignment. Always remember that stitching for yourself or someone within the home is relaxing; but for a customer, it requires professionalism in terms of punctuality and quality of stitching. It is always better to rehearse your stitching talents before you commence your service. You can try stitching for your friends first. If they like your work, they will recommend you to their friends and so on.

Likewise, you can also start off with minor assignments like repairing and altering clothing. This is sure to fetch you people to get started. Working class find it difficult to repair the broken button and re-stitching ready-made clothes to reinforce the stitches. More like that, the health conscious class need to alter their existing clothing once they are a bit done with calorie burning. 

Things you need to set up a stitching unit

Well, since you have by now decided to give it a try, check at home if you have the following necessary stuff to flag off your stitching service:

Sewing machine: You can’t stitch without one. If you have a passion for stitching, you must own one already! In case you don’t have any or want to upgrade it, check in the market what all models are available in your budget (starts from Rs.5000 for a decent electric one).If you want to finish your work faster don’t hesitate to choose an electric one.

Space: Be it your home or outside, better keep the work stuff away from the family. Misplacing someone else stuff will definitely lead to trouble later on. So save a separate space in your home (could be a well-lighted corner or a study room) to run your tailor shop. 

Scissors and stitching accessories: You should keep a stock of needles, coloured threads, hooks, and buttons etc to suit the customer’s need.  A pair of scissors and a measuring tape is a must for any tailor.

Design templates: Nowadays people are happy if they get to see what to expect. Having a set of design template for neck shape, collars, and sleeves will give it a professional touch, rather than a next door stitching unit. Ensure that you take up designs which you are comfortable with.

A desire to succeed: More than everything, you need a strong desire to succeed with your stitching business. Put in your hundred percent so that, the quality of work is outstanding and you get repeating customers who are ready to recommend you to friends.

Yes it is all done. Now what?

Tell your friends that you are ready to stitch for them. As an introductory offer, you can ask for low stitching fees or stitch for free.  Once you stitch the first one, get feedback from them and incorporate the suggestions immediately. Others are good at finding faults which otherwise gets unnoticed with the self. When you are done with a handful of stitching assignments, advertise your service. Get over your shyness and tell people that you have this talent and they can make use of it. Never get upset with any negative feedback, it is the perfect thing to boost the growth of your venture.

Self checks while receiving the orders:

Once you make your mark, you will keep getting new and new orders. When you receive the orders ensure to give optimistic return dates. If you can finish the work earlier than that, it will give a good impression on your clients. Make the stitching requirements clear before they leave your place. Ensure that the cloth and materials they brought is sufficient to stitch the way they want. Do remember to take down their contact details. Maintain a ledger that records the stitching and measurement details.

Measure twice and cut once’ is the slogan for tailors. Before you start working on the material, ascertain that the measurements are precise. Maintain a good relationship with your customers. Make them feel free so that they keep coming to you.

Building on your already established tailoring unit:

Internet is a source of good tutorials on stitching. You can refine your existing talents as well as build on new ones by referring to these tutorials and stitching books. Once you master these on old clothes, you can offer them too in your stitching service agenda.

Start a tailoring teaching unit too along with it. You can earn additional revenue from each student as the fees. Once you become incapable of finishing the orders by yourself, you can easily recruit your own students to stitch for your customers. You can think of paying them based on commission per stitching or as salary every month. Keep in mind to fix the stitching charges to cover the cost of the employees at the same time make it comparable with the running stitching charges in your locality. You can also attach a boutique with it so that your clients get a trusted source of clothing. This will get to more repeating customers, thus helping you to grow.
If it was all about bespoke tailoring so far, you can think of launching designer wears of your own. You can also take up orders from biggies like FabIndia and get into wholesale designer wear manufacturing.  You can look for a franchise too in case you want to get established fast, though it will cost more to get started. You can advertise about your service in large scale to increase the reachability of your service. You can also look for windows to showcase your talent, say exhibitions, sales etc. 

Being a true professional

Utmost professionalism involves worst case scenario management too. You should make provisions to cover up the increasing electric cost and employee remunerations. In case of serious power cuts, you should make arrangements for generators to finish the work on time. Also have some employee back-ups so that your work gets unaffected even when a couple of them are absent. Be smart to recruit more people during peak demand seasons like festivals.

Many international designers are millionaires. They all started with a sewing machine and an urge to succeed. Success is just a few steps away. Go ahead and get started with your tailoring unit. I’m sure to see your happy comment soon. Feel free to use this space to let others know of your success secrets.