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How to start a Vinyl Business (part 1)

Vinyl is so popular right now! Some of you might be considering starting you own business and some of you might have already started.

How did I get started?
The funny part was I bought my machine with no intention to 1) sell stuff and 2) cut vinyl let alone sell vinyl!

My husband and I usually get a nice tax return, so we have this deal where each each we both get something with it, usually around $200. In July of 2010 up until November I had spent hours upon hours cutting out stars by hand for my daughter's 1st birthday party! I started in July because I knew it was going to take me forever! Not long after that we were expecting (to adopt that is) a baby boy. As I got started on his nursery one of my ideas involved, once again, cutting out shapes of the animals that matched his bedding. Now, I might be really crafty, but there was no way I would be able to cut out by hand all these different animals.

I started looking into a Cricut as my tax return purchase. I was 100% set that I wanted to get a Cricut. The only thing I didn't like was to do all the animals I wanted (5 different ones) I would 3 different cartridges and I couldn't find any cartridges with 1 of the animals on it! I was so not looking forward to that.

Then something amazing happened. I heard about a new machine that had come out just 1 year earlier called a Silhouette. I looked into it, did lots of research and concluded that is exactly what I needed!

About 1 month before baby boy was due my Silhouette arrived and I got to work. I cut out paper animals to hang from the ceiling. I made an adorable sign (out of cardstock) with his name on it. I was all about the paper crafts!

A few months later my friend asked if I could cut some vinyl for her son's room. She went and bought the vinyl from Joanne's, I came over with my Silhouette and we designed and cut the saying she wanted. When we were done she gave me what was left of the vinyl as a Thank You for cutting it out for her. It didn't take me long to come up with 2 crafts I wanted to do using the vinyl. After I made them I realized something... I wanted to design, cut and sell vinyl!!!!

I am a graphic designer so deigning for me is extremely easy!  Just know before going in that unless you are a graphic designer or are willing to learn how to use Phototshop, the designs you will be limited to are on the Silhouette Studio or things you can find online.

I see people all the time say. "I have a customer who wants this, but I can't find it in the Silhouette store!"
Here are some tips:

  • Don't take an order unless you are 100% sure you CAN make it. 
  • Dafont.com is the best site to find free fonts! 
  • There are several sites that you can purchase designs on! 

They are:
My Vinyl Designer
Vinyl Ready Designs
Peppermint Creative
Ready 2 Cut

  • My favorite places to find inspiration for ideas, designs and products is:

This Facebook group 

  • Research which machine is best for you
  • If you are serious about selling vinyl, you might want to consider (eventually, once you know you can sell and have done good) a bigger machine. (This is my cutter I have now)
  • Advertise! I started selling products on Facebook and grew my entire business from that! I still get majority of my sales through Facebook!