This week I am proud to introduce a brand new blog series: side hustle case studies.
When I asked my readers what you’d like to see more of on my blog, LOADS of you told me you’d like to hear more practical examples of work from home ideas and ways to make extra money.
Well, I’ve already written about most of the things I do personally to make extra cash. But there is a whole world of money making opportunities out there, and I’m aware that there are loads of ideas I’ve never even heard of.
So I reached out to my friends and blogging colleagues to find out how they make extra cash.
And I was AMAZED at some of the creative, cool and profitable side hustles they shared with me!
This week, Laura from Thrifty Londoner kicks off the series telling us how she makes money selling on Etsy!
Laura makes gorgeous embroidered T shirts to sell in her Etsy store. But you can sell just about any kind of handmade product on Etsy.
Do you have any kind of creative skill or hobby you could monetise to make extra income?
How to Make Money Selling on Etsy with Laura from Thrifty Londoner
Please tell us a little about yourself and your side hustle.
Hi, I’m Laura and I blog about millennial money at thriftylondoner.com. I write about how to make the most of your money whilst living in the capital, and how to make some extra money on the side. I’ll often reference my favourite side hustle in my posts – owning an Etsy store and selling personalised, hand embroidered t-shirts online.
How long have you been doing your side hustle? How did you get into it?
I have been doing my side hustle for around 18 months now, and I first got into it when I bought some embroidery thread and a hoop with the intention of embroidering one of my t-shirts. I wore my newly embroidered t-shirt to work the next day and one of my colleagues asked if I took commissions- I said yes, and the rest is history! I soon opened up an Etsy store and an Instagram account and the orders began to come through very quickly after that.
What does the work actually involve? What does a typical day/work session look like for you?
In the first instance, the work involves me creating designs, and uploading them with photos and descriptions onto my online Etsy store. The t-shirts are made to order, and so once someone places an order against a design, I will sew it up and send it to them within two weeks.
If someone requests a custom design (which people often do!) then I will sketch out their design onto paper for them to approve, and then transfer it onto the t-shirt for sewing.
A typical work session is me with my hoop and a tangle of embroidery threads on the sofa watching TV!
How much can you make doing this side hustle?
Marketing your Etsy store and making money from it are very closely linked- the more effort I put into my Instagram page and creating new designs, the more money I will make each month.
In my best business months ever where bloggers have shared my designs, and I have put a lot of work into the promotion of the shop, I have been able to make around £400 in profit. On a month where I put no photos of Instagram and don’t put any effort into the promotion of the store, I might make £80 in profit.
The beauty of this side hustle is that you can scale it up or down depending on how busy you are on a given month and how much crafting you want to do!
Are there any start-up costs and/or ongoing expenses with this side hustle?
Opening an Etsy store will cost you nothing- so your only start up costs will be the materials and tools you might need to make the product that you want to sell. For example, the only start up costs for my personalised t-shirts were an embroidery hoop and some embroidery threads.
Ongoing expenses for an Etsy store would be the 4% commission that Etsy takes for each sale that you make.
What advice would you give to somebody who wants to get started?
My best advice for anyone thinking about opening an Etsy store is to start a dedicated Instagram page at the same time. Most of my sales come from customers who find me on Etsy- it’s also a great way to join the large crafting community on Instagram.
If you have an idea- it’s best to just get started and put yourself out there. I felt a little awkward about sharing my Instagram page and my store with my friends and family at first, but they all loved the idea and were my very first customers!
Any recommended websites or resources?
My favourite resource for selling on Etsy is their Seller Handbook– it has all the resources you could possibly need to help you to create a successful Etsy business. It walks you through the steps of starting your store, right through to advice about taking your small business from a fledgling start-up to a full time venture.
Where can we find you?
Etsy store: https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/teepartyclothing
Thank you Laura!
You can check out the other posts in the side hustle case studies series here.