The pandemic gave rise to many home businesses and some of the most popular ones included tiffin deliveries, salon treatments and haircuts, and tailoring and stitching. While we’ve already shown you how to set up a profitable tiffin service from home, we’re now giving you a step-by-step to put your tailoring skills to use and make some money. It’s a great little business that you can run from the comfort of your home, and it requires very little investment.
Benefits Of Starting An At-Home Tailoring Service
1. Independence & Self-Employment
With the business, you get the independence to work with your fashion ideas, and customer demands. Based on your area of expertise, you can move ahead with any tailoring associated with either men’s or women’s apparel.
You can select amongst an extensive range of options including regular cloth stitching, suit-specialist, pattern making, sample making, cross-stitching, hemming, pet-wear designing, uniform making, costume designing, uniform making, curtains making, bags designing, costume designing for kids, and several other things.
2. Great Profit Margins
With a minimal investment in terms of set up, and no technology required (just take your payments via UPI or in cash and network and market on WhatsApp), the money you make on top of your basic cost is all yours! As you develop relationships with your customers, you can work on personalisation so that they keep coming back to you. The business allows you to earn using a skill, which is why your charges can be customised based on the work on the garment and the volume of the order. From basic suit stitching, to upcycling an old saree or even a contract from stitching of school uniforms, the opportunities to earn are endless.
3. No Commercial Space Needed
You don’t need a commercial space like a karkhana or workshop to get started. Most neighbourhood aunties have been offering tailoring services from a corner of their study room for ages. Advertise in your building and the complexes around your apartment, print up pamphlets made on your home computer, whatsapp or text your contact list to inform them you’re offering this service, and then, just start taking orders and executing them at home.
Make note, only take volumes you can handle and commit delivery dates you can meet in order to keep the customer satisfaction level high. As you begin making money, you can invest in a space, or specialised machines, or even continue at the scale you started—it’s really up to you.
4. You Can Take Help From Family
For the beginning, you can take assistance from family members to help you in a variety of ways, including but not restricted to stitching. Technology-savvy kids can help with pamphlet designs and attractive Whatsapp image messages to promote your tailoring business. Someone who is out of the home a lot can help with pickups and drops of clothes, another member can help keep account of finances.
Nothing is a more significant achievement than making your passion a lifetime profession. You will start living your life with happiness and self-confidence. It’s all your skill and efforts that is allowing you to earn amazingly and live a life full of self-stability.
10-Step Guide To Start A Successful Tailoring Service From Home
1. Identify & Understand Your Target Audience
Women are the main targets for most tailoring services. Women love wearing customised and fitted clothes. They buy a lot of readymade garments from a mall or a bazaar. But they need someone to alter the garments, or upcycle an old outfit, or even stitch blouses and patch the fall or pico to their sarees.
Identify the likes and dislikes of the women you’re catering to in terms of design, fits, and price they are willing to pay to beat the competition from other local tailoring services.
2. Create A Dedicated Work Space
Though it depends on the number of machines and staff, a 100-120 sq ft space is enough to start with 2 machines. You can also utilise the vertical space for storing materials. There should be a separate, big enough room space in your home for a proper setup and space for customers in case they wish to come and discuss their requirements in person.
3. Determine Cost Of Production
To begin the work of cutting and tailoring In India, it is enough to buy a domestic, non-pedestrian sewing machine which can cost you between Rs 1,000 and Rs 2000. But there will be other hidden costs like buttons, materials, threads, pattern making stencils, raw materials, electricity, delivery and logistics, promotion cost of your service, etc. List down a total of the average minimum cost you may incur to set up shop from home, and add 12%-20% labour, earmarked to pay yourself. The labour you charge can vary based on the volume of work you get every month or the volume of work you get from a particular customer. Anything over and above this is pure profit so charge accordingly.
4. Hone Your Skills
To run a tailoring business you need some basic skills that include:
- Knowledge of sewing machine (basic machine) and running a sewing machine
- Learn garment stitching. Whether you stitch garment yourself or hire a skilled tailor, you should learn the basics of garment stitching
- Body measurement and garment measurement
- Learn pattern drafting
- Cutting the fabric for garment parts
- Learn about fabrics and their properties
- Learn about garment fit
- Take training on tailoring and garment manufacturing and pattern making. A 3-6 months course is enough to start a tailoring shop.
Note: You don’t need to learn stitching work yourself if you plan to outsource stitching work to a hired tailor.
5. Secure The Investment
The investment associated with the business is extremely less as compared to other businesses. You can get started simply with the sewing machine, and the essential stitching materials. As soon as you start getting the orders from the customers, you can buy the raw materials.
Moreover, you need to create some of your customised designs and expose them to the local public. The skill will help you gain the customer’s attraction, and you will be getting more and more orders.
6. Buy The Sewing Machine(s)
For a tailoring shop, you need at least one black head single needle lock stitch machine and one 3 thread overlock machine (Also called an interlock machine). An interlocking machine is used for edge finish. If you want you can invest in industrial sewing machines too. The price of the black head sewing machine on Amazon is around Rs 3,500-Rs 6,000.
7. Get Your Tools & Equipment In Order
Other than sewing machines and a table, you need to purchase working aids. Refer to the following list.
- Scissors for cutting fabric
- Chalk for marking
- Scales and curves
- Measuring tape
- Pattern paper
- Seam opener
- Work aids like special presser foot for hemming and pico stitch. (Hemming and pico stitch can be done manually)
- Raw material requirement: Threads and supplies
- Some hangers, rack, and stands
- Electric iron
- You need a table for pattern making, garment measuring, and cloth cutting. A 6 ft x 4 ft tabletop is ok. If you have a small space you can manage it in a 4 x 3.5 square ft table
8. Set Your Price & Create A Rates Chart
The rates change with respect to a locality, so do proper research before you set the price for your tailoring service from home.
Following are few rates for your reference
- Kurta / dress alteration: Rs 50
- Blouse stitching: Rs 300-Rs 400
- Kurta making: Rs 250-Rs 350 (depends on design and inclusion of accessories)
- Saree fall attaching + pico: Rs 80-Rs 100
- Only Pico: Rs 40
- Salwar kameez: Rs 350 onwards
Note: Print one price list of different types of work and hang it on the wall at a visible location.
9. Marketing & Advertising
You need to tell others about your services. Print flex banners and display the banner wherever possible. One banner must be placed at the main gate of your house. Print your mobile number. Along with the traditional marketing tools, online marketing has also proven to be extremely effective. Create a social media account, post about your boutique, services and customer testimonials and see the difference. It will help you launch your business without any investment. Remember to keep posting regularly, engage with your audience and enjoy marketing free of cost. For all of the above, you can enlist the help of a family member who is comfortable and adept at social media.
10. Go Digital If You Want To Scale
An effective way to manage your tailoring business is through technology. You can set up an app or website to receive orders and payments online. You can create a gallery of previous orders and new designs on the website, customers can look at your products with the ease of being at their homes. The major advantage of going digital is that you have digital data to plan your future decisions and expand your business. This is a great option once you decide to scale but is not necessarily needed for a home tailoring business.
You can never dream of being a successful entrepreneur overnight. However, your versatility and strong determination will make your path clear to achieve great success within a small time frame. With the right planning and marketing strategy, you can start this business and make your business profitable. Always be honest with the services you provide and maintain transparency. This will let your customers judge your crystal clear mentality and keep on assigning you the works.