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Patchwork is an easy work you can do sitting all day home, and at the same time you can earn good income for your family this winter. The work involves no investment at all. Instead it requires only human hands at work.

Play your music and enjoy working without anybody ordering or bothering and it can be fun and easy job to do. There are different kinds of patch work you can do to make a living out of the job.  These works include; stained glass window patchwork, cathedral window patchwork, stuffed or puffed patchwork, somerset patchwork and also quilt patchwork, patchwork templates australia

However, we see quilt patchwork to be the most popular among all these. Patchwork in fact has turned into a business. Many individuals who used to do the work themselves have now started hiring people and taking patchwork assignments. One can really develop and move ahead with the work. This article contains everything you need to know about how you can make money with patchwork:

  • How Can You Make Money With Patchwork?
  • 5 Ways to Make Money Sewing
  • Sewing Ideas to Make Money
  • Sewing For Profit Ideas
  • How to Make Money Sewing Baby Clothes
  • How to make Money From Sewing UK
  • How to Start a Sewing Business With no Money
  • What Will You do to Make Your Sewing Time Profitable?
  • How to Make Money Through Quilting
  • 3 Ways to Make Money From Fabrics
  • Can You make a Living Selling Quilts?
  • How Much Money Can You Make Selling Quilt Patterns?
  • How do You Make Money From Sewing Projects?
  • What Can You Make With Patchwork?
  • What Sewn Items Sell Best?
  • What is The Easiest Thing to Sew And Sell?
  • Can I Make a Living Sewing?
  • What Handmade Items Are in Demand?
  • Is Sewing a Good Career?
  • What Does a Seamstress Make Per Hour?
  • What Should I Charge Per Hour For Sewing?
  • How Much Money Can You Make as a Seamstress?
  • How do You Become a Seamstress?

How Can You Make Money With Patchwork?


1. About the work: Patchwork is what it sounds like. It is needle work involving joining or stitching together patches of fabrics. While you work you will stitch different types, brands, quality and quantity of cloth together to form a large design or simply add your work to another already existing design.

This is in relation to quilt patchwork which is the most well known patchwork people prefer to do. Apart from quilt patching you can also do glass, bags, wall and other types of patching work. Patch is all about repairing what is torn and broken and can be fixed by human hands with a little bit of help taken from resources.

Patch work can combine with crafts to make for something more than the product was before it was torn or broken. This patch work is more like making a new product out of the old product to sell it for a better price. It is something like recycling.

2. Types of Patchwork: There are various types of patchwork you can put your hands in if you’re interested in some extra income. Some of them are quilt patching, clothes patching, toys patching, glass patching. Each kind of patch work requires separate handling skills, equipments and time of work.

Read Also: Make Money With Film Distribution

For example if you start with quilt patchwork you will need different types of needles, cloth, a quilt and other necessary things for making it a perfect job done. Same goes with the other types of patch works. Investment, however, is not much. You spend once to buy the things to do the job and they will last forever, unless you have to throw them away for a change.

3. Patchwork & Quilting business compendium: Quilting is one of the best known patchwork people choose to do. It helps you make good money staying indoors or having a sun bathe in your courtyard. You will only need a needle for the job and some continuous strenuous efforts to put in.

What you do here is you join pieces of cloth by your hands. You can use your hands or do the job with a machine. You will require some experience to work more efficiently and do the work easily. Practice will make you better with time but the beginnings might be really slow and the income too doesn’t come when you work slowly.

As you pick up speed you begin to gain confidence and your income rises with the number of quilts you do or with the number of hours you continuously work for, if for a company.

4. What is the work like? : It is fun when you have a group of people working with you. Your mind is not at work so you have plenty of gossips and things to laugh and share and at the same time work with your hands. You don’t have a boss scolding you and you also learn a useful work which will also help you in your own house for repairing cloth works, crafts and quilts.

The Great Depression had brought about a great change in the job by giving people food and shelter to survive. Now this job earns you a lot of extra income to share with your family. The best thing for you would be to start slow at the job, do not hesitate to take help from co-workers and once you gain experience you will enjoy the easy job with enough cash in your pocket for the day.

5. What material is used: In patchwork, you use cloth. The cloth can be cotton, silk, etc, this doesn’t matter, your work is to patch the right cloth in the right place. When you are hired by a company to do patchwork for good quality cloth, you will be paid well to work dedicatedly by concentrating only on the job.

You will be given cloths with various designs and quality. If you make mistake in patching, it will be a whole rework process for you and you cannot afford to waste time on that. Try not to be creative but be obedient when you’re working for a firm or org.

If the patchwork is your own business, you must be creative, and use various forms of embroidery and craftworks on your patching to make the final quilt more attractive than what it was before. But do not use excessive glitters, poky materials, etc that would spoil the quilt and make it worse.

Using unnecessary stitching and materials could ruin your quilt, make you lose customers and also cost you extra money for no benefit to come.

6. Investment: This is something you don’t have to worry about. Investment in the patchwork job is negligible. In case you plan to do the patch work with your hands, you will only need to purchase a few needles with different size, lengths and designs. Some thread of various colors and qualities will have to be in your possession before you begin.

Try not to act miserly and make sure what you buy is of genuine and good quality so that your customers are not disappointed by your work. This will also help you gain more work and differentiate you from the others. In case you decide to invest in a machine for the work to be faster and easier, you can buy a sewing machine.

You get sewing machines of all types, ranges and quality in the market. You can also buy second hand machines so that you don’t have to get a lot of cash out of your pocket before you start earning.

7. How to start: You can earn money patching quilts anytime and anywhere you want. You can either take up a job in a factory or industry or you can do something like a business. First of all contact people around your locality and other localities, announce that you would like to start with fixing up their quilts and keep a range for your services.

Keep a low range in the beginning to attract customers and then as you gain experience, you can raise you prices as per your wish and demands. Visit old houses where there are chances of torn and abandoned quilts. Offer the elderly people your patching service and patch everything they give you to patch including clothes, bags, household good, toys etc.

Visiting houses will help you to build contacts. Leave your phone and address details with these people you visit so that they can contact you when they need patching of their quilts, etc.

8. Make Quilts and Sell them:  There is another way you can earn from patchwork. You can make quilts and sell them. This is an amazing way to start off with your own independent business in your locality. You will have to buy the cotton, thread and cloth for the quilt and then you can make wonderful quilts with various designs, weights and styles.

You can also gather unwanted or spoilt quilts and take what is useful from these then throw out the rest. From the useful cotton and silk you gather from all these quilts you can do the patching of them and create a wonderful new quilt. Selling this will earn you a good day’s income.

Try to get antique fabrics for your quilts if you have some extra money you can invest in the business, because the turnover is huge in the business.

9. Types of quilts you can make: You can make different kinds of quilts to sell. People all over the world love quilts in winter more than a heater. Patch quilts for babies, adults, infants, one month olds, AC quilts, quilts especially for light winters, quilts for heavy winters, quilts for the floor and couch, etc.

Keep this in mind that all of these quilts are different in shapes, sizes and weights. Add beautiful and colorful boards to your quilts to make them look attractive.

10. How to Market: Now comes the hard work. If you’ve started your quilting business you will need to market it among people who want to know more about what you have to offer. So what you have to do is organize campaigns, events, allow kids to help you in your work, offer soft toys made of the material you have, to these kids. This way you can do some publicity.

Another way is tours. You can organize tours like shopping tours, craft tours, quilt tours, you can also organize retreats, etc to do something different from other quilt makers. You have to be different to get more orders and flourish in the business. Be sure to be available for other patchwork apart from quilts too because people will expect you to help them out with other patchworks you can do.

11. Machine stitching: This is what you will most commonly find among housewives and tailors. Keep in mind that your hands cannot do what machines can do. Don’t worry, machines are also made by human hands to lower the work load for us, so it is advisable that you buy a sewing machine, never mind if the machine is old or second hand, to start off, it will help you very much.

With machine stitching you can make fabulous designs on your quilts. While patching the quilt if you have made a mistake or if the fabric you’re adding looks odd, you can simply craft designs on the quilt cloth to make it look fashionable and acceptable. Keep in mind that you need to take measurements properly.

You might not need a college degree for the job but you must know how about inches and centimeters. This is because you will have to measure, cut and patch cloth on areas that will again require measurements. If you don’t know measurements you can learn it in no time. If you’re making a quilt, a standard quilt would measure approximately 40 x 55 inches.

You can find patchwork fabrics in stores around your locality. These are sold in “fat quarters” that means a 50 cum piece of cloth cut across the fabric width. This might sound confusing but once you visit a shop to purchase fabric, you will get the picture of everything.

12. Scope in the business: The work has a good scope if you take it as a career. In the beginning you will struggle a lot but gradually as you gain experience, you will soon have more money to invest in the job and you will not hesitate to do that because you will see a bright future of yourself.

You will slowly own a quilt shop of your own, buy more sewing machines and also organize classes for youngsters who so that they can work for you in your shop. If you do well in the shop you can even start manufacturing quilt related products, like fabrics or needles.

As you grow you will notice more opportunities coming your way. However, the first thing to do is to start somewhere and doing a part time job of patchwork is a good way to begin.

5 Ways to Make Money Sewing

You can make money sewing a wide range of fabric items, from headscarves to stuffed animals to bespoke clothing. Your skill level and personal taste will help determine what kind of sewing project you select to make and sell. You will also need business skills like marketing and pricing to make a profit from sewing.

1. Bags
Sew for profit

You only need basic sewing skills to create a professional-looking, useful bag! Many bags require just a few straight seams and some finished edges.

Sewing most types of bags won’t take you very long, so you will save time by trying this simple project, too.

Think of all the kinds of bags you use each day, such as zipper makeup bags, reusable snack pouches or lunch bags, and handy totes to replace plastic grocery bags! With such a variety of types to choose from, you might want to break into the sewing business by starting your own line of hand-sewn bags.

2. Kitchen Cuteness
Sewing business

Who doesn’t love home decor items that match a unique kitchen style? You could sew themed potholders, tea towels, tea cozies, or even kitchen curtains!

Buyers who want something that exemplifies their own personal style will pay a premium for a unique, handmade piece of kitchen cuteness.

Everyone needs oven mitts. Of course, you could buy your potholders at Walmart for three dollars, but if you love your kitchen, you will spend a bit more to buy a special, handmade set of oven mitts that match the color of your kitchen walls!

Honestly, you could apply this idea to any area of home decor. You could easily start a line of themed throw pillows, for example.

If you’re an experienced sewer, this kind of project will probably only take you about half an hour. But don’t panic if you’re a newbie! You only need basic skills for a project like sewing a potholder, so you may find this kind of project a perfect place to start.

3. Personalized Gifts
Sewing for profit

Offering items custom-made with personalized details for each buyer will set you apart from mainstream retail products.

You could sell baby clothes embroidered with the little one’s name or make quilts based on the customer’s childhood memories. Personalizing a handmade item can be as simple or fancy as you want!

The wedding industry is another great market in this area. You could sell t-shirts embroidered with the bride and groom’s names or tote bags labeled with each bridesmaid’s initials.

Of course, you would have to set up a communication channel with customers to make sure you provide exactly the personalization that they want.

You would also have to consider how much money you want to spend launching this business. If you already have an embroidery machine, this line of business might be a perfect fit for you! If you don’t already own this pricey piece of equipment, you might want to look for another sewing project.

4. Doll Clothes and Stuffed Toys
Making money sewing

Sewing doll clothes require some advanced skills, and you may find it challenging to work in miniature.

That said, dolls come in standard sizes, so you can count on always sewing things in the same shape and size. Real people come in many different sizes, so sewing for dolls is easier in that regard!

American Girl has made 18” dolls super-popular, and you can find a market for everything from historic prairie dresses for dolls to modern jumpers, headbands, and t-shirts! This type of sewing is so popular that you can find thousands of free patterns online to get you started.

If dolls aren’t your thing, you might find it fun to sew stuffed animals. Sewing in 3D could make you feel like your brain is turned inside out, but if you’re the kind of sewer who likes this challenge, give it a try!

Imagine the market for handmade, personalized, stuffed toys. Grandparents love that kind of thing!

As you may have noticed, this sewing project does require more complex sewing skills. You will need the patience and ability to sew a two-inch sleeve into a dress, for example. That said, doll clothes use simpler measurements and use far fewer materials than people’s clothes!

5. Dog Clothes
Dog Clothes

Yes, you could sew and sell handmade dog clothes! Lots of people love their pets like their own children and treat them accordingly. Why not cash in on that market and provide an adorable pet jacket to keep a special furry friend nice and warm?

You could focus on snug winter coats for dogs. Or you could branch out and make coats with superhero capes attached. Of course, you could also add some personalized touches if you want to go all-in!

Once again, this kind of project won’t require a lot of fabric and materials. After you get used to sewing designs that fit four legs instead of two, you’ll find these projects pretty easy!

Sewing Ideas to Make Money

Whether you’re looking to start a full time business or just make some extra money with a sewing side hustle, here are some products to sew and sell.


For those who are particularly skilled, you can start your very own clothing line and sell everything from dresses to separates.


A lot of today’s most popular shoe styles are made with canvas or fabric. This may take some skills and knowledge, but you can potentially sell them for a decent price.

Baby Slippers

For something a bit less challenging, you can stitch tiny slippers for babies. Since they don’t need to be as durable, you may not even need to use soles.


If you want to offer a variety of simple accessories, you can sell fabric scarves. There are a ton of different styles and materials to consider, from light infinity scarves to heavier versions made of flannel.


Similarly, you can sell hats in a huge array of styles, colors, materials, and sizes. These accessories are likely to be most popular in the winter.


For something small but handy, offer fabric headbands. These can be simple and practical or they can include unique designs like fabric flowers or lace.


Fabric bows also make for unique sewn hair accessories. These are likely to be especially popular in boutiques or online shops that offer accessories for kids.


Scrunchies have made a comeback in recent years. They only require a small amount of fabric and a bit of elastic, so you can make them without a lot of expense.


For something a bit more stylish and creative, you can stitch unique purses to sell online or in fashion boutiques.

Travel Pouches

Travel pouches are small fabric bags that people often use to store makeup or toiletries when they travel. These are fairly simple and can be made using a variety of unique patterns.

Sewing For Profit Ideas

Here are 10 sewing businesses to choose from. As you read each option, think about what would be involved in running that business, and how you feel about doing those things. This will help you pinpoint the sewing business that really appeals to you.  

1. Offer Repair and Alteration Services 

As fun as sewing can be, it also has its practical side. When a piece of clothing gets damaged, you can either repair the damage or buy a replacement.

And, as any sewer knows, repairing or altering clothes is always less expensive than buying something new. While repairing and altering clothes is a great way to save money, you can also use those skills to earn some cash? Many people have garments they love too much to throw away.

But they can’t actually wear those items because they have rips, tears, broken zippers, or missing buttons. And not everyone has the skills needed to repairs damaged clothes.

Some of those people would be happy to pay someone—like you—to fix a favorite jacket, dress, or pair of jeans. And don’t forget about offering alteration services. Some of your potential customers are people who have a hard time finding clothes that fit them correctly.

After buying clothes from a retail store, they’ll gladly pay you to make the tweaks necessary to make those new clothes fit them better. People who have lost (or are still losing) weight could also use your alteration services.

Not everyone wants to run out and buy a whole new wardrobe to fit their new bodies. Instead, they’d rather pay someone to adjust the clothes they already have to fit their new size.  

2. Make Garments for Others

Do you love to make clothes? Can you make garments to fit people of any shape, size or body type?

If so, you can make money making garments for others. Some people would love to have the latest designer fashions, but can’t afford to pay the latest designer prices.

If you put the word out that you can make “designer knock-offs” for a fraction of the price, you’ll have potential customers beating down your door. You can also make money making attire for special occasions.

If you can make Halloween costumes, you can turn quite a profit in the weeks leading up to October 31st. And if you can make beautiful and affordable formal wear, you can have the cash pouring in during prom season.

And don’t forget weddings. There are sewers who make a full-time living making dresses for brides, their mothers, bridesmaids, flower girls, or anyone else who needs an outfit for the occasion.  

3. Specialize in Making Home Décor 

You like making clothes okay. But your real passion is making home décor items, like curtains, pillow cases, table cloths, and duvet covers.

If this describes you, you can build a sewing business around making home décor items for other people. When you go shopping for things like drapes, throw pillows, and quilts, it can be hard to find exactly what you want in a retail store.

This is especially true if you’re looking for something not only in a particular style, but that also has the right color or pattern. Sometimes, the only solution is to buy some fabric that suits your needs, and make the item yourself.

But if someone doesn’t have the skills to make their own curtains or pillow cases, they might pay you to make those items for them.

The great thing about building your business around making home décor items is that any order you get has the potential to grow. For example, if someone wants you to make a duvet cover for them, ask if they’d also like matching curtains and pillow cases.

If someone orders a tablecloth, ask if they’d also like coordinating place mats and dining chair cushions. As often as not, the answer will be, “Yes!”

You don’t have to know how to make every home décor item imaginable in order to have this type of sewing business. Instead, you can specialize.

For example, you can focus on making items for a specific room, like the bedroom, or the kitchen. Or you can specialize in making just one thing, like curtains or duvet covers.

  4. Become a Sewing Tutor

Many people would love to learn to sew, but one thing or another seems to stand in the way.

Maybe they can’t afford classes. Or, just as likely, they can’t rearrange their schedules to attend a class that meets at a set time once or twice a week.

Of course sewing books, magazines and websites can help them learn to so. But some people prefer to learn from a living, breathing person who can teach them the basics, quickly correct their mistakes, and answer their questions in real time.

People like this would gladly pay a small, hourly fee for one-on-one sessions with a sewing tutor. And that sewing tutor could be you. If you don’t think you know enough to be a sewing tutor, there’s good news.

You don’t have to be an expert sewer with years of experience in order to teach others how to sew.

In fact, if you have a solid grasp of the most basic sewing skills, you have plenty to teach someone who knows little or nothing about sewing. If a student has their own sewing machine, you could offer to go to their home to give them lessons.

This way, they don’t have to worry about childcare. Other great places to give one-on-one sewing lessons include public parks, libraries and fabric shops. Or, if you’d prefer to give lessons in the comfort of your own home, you can do that too.

Another way to make money teaching others to sew is by throwing “sewing parties.” Guests who attend these parties (which will last about 2 or 3 hours) will pay you a small fee. In exchange, you will walk them, step-by-step, through the creation of a single, simple sewing project.

To make things convenient for your students, you can provide the needed materials, and work the cost of those materials into the initial fee. If you throw sewing parties for children over the weekend, parents will gladly pay not just to have their children learn to so, but to also get a few hours of free time.

You might go to someone’s house who just bought a new sewing machine. Show them how to set it up and get started with the basic stitches.

Then teach them how to make a few projects.

You can also teach lessons one on one on Skype.

The cost of these lessons should be considerably higher than what you’d charge for group lessons. But the students have the advantage of being able to ask you questions directly and help decide which projects to work on.

You have learned a valuable skill and with some imagination and effort you can use that skill to make some cold hard cash.  

5. Sell Your Sewing Crafts

Whether you’re a sewer, quilter, embroiderer, or some other type of crafter, you probably have the skills to make at least one thing other people would buy. And, believe it or not, you can build a profitable craft business around being able to make one or two things really well.

One problem avid crafters have is that, after a while, their homes begin to overflow with their completed crafting projects. Even giving most of what they make to friends and family members doesn’t always help.

The solution? Sell some of those crafts you’ve made.

Not only will you reclaim living space, but you’ll turn a profit at the same time. So, how can you go about selling your crafts? One option is to use an online marketplace, like Etsy. These sites make it easy to set up your own virtual store. Getting your first few sales might be tough.

But once you have some happy customers spreading the word about your products, your online business will start to flourish.

Etsy can be a gold mine if you do it right. If you want to learn how to properly market and sell your items on Etsy go have a look at this course. www.sewmyplace.com/go/etsy

The advantages of Etsy are that it’s easier than building your own webpage. Also, people are already coming to Etsy to buy handcrafted items so you don’t have to find ways to bring visitors to your site. They are already aware that handmade items cost more so you’ve crossed that hurdle.

The most important thing in your store is to take quality photographs of your items. Use natural lightening and nice backgrounds. Post as many photos of each item as allowed.

How to Make Money Sewing Baby Clothes

1. Offer Sewing Service
You can also earn extra cash by offering you services. Those parents who want to have customized clothes for their babies will love the idea. You may charge them according to your sewing and designing fee, plus the materials you use.

When you do this option, make sure to consider all the costs you incur per project. This is to avoid undercharging your services.

2. Provide Alteration Services
Alteration services are a great way to make money by using your sewing skills. Some parents bought clothes online that are either big or small for their kids. In such cases, they will need alterations for these clothes.

3. Offer Pattern Design And Making
Some parents know basic sewing skills. Some even have the equipment and the materials for making baby clothes. What prevents them is their lack of skills in design and pattern-making.

If you are abreast of these skills, you can monetize them. You can make designs and patterns for a fee.
4. Teach Basic Dressmaking
You can set-up a tutorial class to teach basic dressmaking. This is perfect for those who want to make simple dresses for their girls.

5. Design and Make Patterns for Private Label
Some medium-scale baby clothes producers buy designs and patterns. Once they like your designs or patterns, they buy it from you. The clothing manufacturer will now own the right for that design and pattern. Some even have them patented for the exclusivity of the design.

How to make Money From Sewing UK

Whether it’s just a little extra money to buy fabric or perhaps the beginning of a full time home business, we thought we’d put together a few ideas to get you started!

Sew Gifts and Accessories

Even if you haven’t mastered all the more advanced techniques you can start by sewing up simple purses, bags, pin cushions or little soft toys.  Spend some time creating unique designs.  Look around for design inspiration on sites like Pinterest, but be sure that you don’t use any other designers patterns unless they explicitly say it’s fine to sell your finished products.

You can sell these little gifts and accessories at craft fairs or on a handmade marketplace like Folksy.com where they have masses of tips for setting up a shop and learning how to market your handmade products.

Share Your Skills

You don’t have to be a saville row tailor to teach people to sew!  You can specialise in teaching people to sew curtains, T-shirts, bags or basic dressmaking skills. Ask around friends and family and see if they would like to come to a sewing class with you.

Once you have taught a few people, some good friends perhaps, your confidence will grow and you can start planning and marketing your sewing workshops. Community Halls are often very cheap to hire for a few hours for you to teach and you get the benefit of advertising to all the hall users.  Or invite people to your home if you have a big dining room table that can fit a few machines.

Have a look online to see how much you should charge and be sure to provide people with all the information they need on what they need to bring with them (eg bring your own sewing machine!)

Mending and Alterations

Not perhaps the most exciting of jobs, but it will certainly keep you busy as there are so many people who just don’t fit clothes off the peg, or find a perfect dress that just needs a little tweak to make it perfect. Shortening trouser legs and shirt sleeves, adjusting waistbands or mending a split seam.  It may seem simple to you but so many people don’t have the time or inclination to learn to mend a garment.

In terms of marketing your services, setting up a Facebook Page and asking friends and family to spread the word is a great start. Put up prices in a list for basic alterations, it’s easy to do a little research to find out the going rate in your area.

You need to keep it local with advertising, office buildings, a local dry cleaners or hairdressers may be able to put up an advert for you.

Pattern Design

There are loads of tutorials for drafting patterns online and you can also find software to help you create patterns which you can sell as downloads. Whether you are designing dress patterns or just patterns for accessories and soft toys it’s important that you have your patterns tested to ensure they work.

How to Start a Sewing Business With no Money

If you enjoy sewing, creating interesting clothing patterns or performing alterations and tailoring, starting a sewing business may be the perfect business opportunity for you. Depending on your skills, there are many different types of sewing projects available including dressmaking, costume design, special occasion clothing, embroidery and clothing repair.

Keeping up with fashion and sewing trends is the best way to attract a variety of customers and maintain regular clients and, with a bit of luck, referrals from these clients help you build an even larger customer base.

Create a Business Plan

Write a business plan to guide you through each stage of business development when starting a sewing business. The plan should begin with an analysis of your local market as well as similar shops and services, if any, in your area. Next, list and describe the types of services you hope to offer your clients.

The third section should include projected start-up costs, including sewing machines, shop rental, thread, patterns, computer equipment and software. Follow up with a marketing plan, as well as a description of owner and employee roles.

Take Care of Your Paperwork

Research business organization, license and permitting requirements before your grand opening. Register your business with state and local authorities: If you plan to form a limited liability corporation, a corporation, or a partnership, talk to an attorney who can then guide you through the process.

You can protect your new business by purchasing business insurance. If you are operating from home, ask your agent if you can add a home-business rider to your current policy: If not, you’ll need a separate policy for your business.

Contact the Internal Revenue Service to apply for an employer identification number to use on business documents and tax forms. You’ll also want to contact your state and local tax agencies to set up an account for submitting sales taxes, if they required in your state or municipality.

Make a Space for Your Work

If you are planning to work from your home, contact the local small business administration office or home zoning commission office to inquire about the rules concerning home-based businesses, as some regions do not permit business owners to meet with clients in residential areas.

Setting aside a room or area of your home that you use strictly for business not only helps you keep your business supplies organized, but it also has tax benefits. Talk to your accountant or tax preparer about possible deductions for home office space.

Another option is renting commercial space for your business. You could find an office in a local business incubator or co-working space, or you could lease a traditional commercial property.

Buy the Tools of Your Trade

Once you have a space, it’s time to purchase start-up equipment such as a sewing machine, thread, needles, embroidery supplies, ready-made patterns, computer software for creating and printing patterns, invoicing and bookkeeping software. Ensure that your workspace has all required permits and licenses before moving your inventory and tools into your shop.

Prepare a Portfolio

Before opening, assemble photos of your best work to use in promotional efforts and in a portfolio to show clients. If possible, have some actual pieces in your office or shop so that clients can examine the quality of your work. Hire a professional to create an online portfolio and website if you do not have the ability to do this yourself, or you want it to really stand out form the crowd.

Reach Out to Potential Clients

There are several ways to promote your new business. Friends, family, and social media contacts are an excellent place to start. Even if they don’t plan to use your services, they may have friends or family members who do need custom sewing or alterations.

Display flyers in local dress shops, grocery stores, dry cleaners, wedding shops and other local businesses. Reach out to local print and television reporters to interest them in a feature story on an enterprising new business in their community. Don’t forget about online resources: could you list your business in online business directories and services like Google Maps?

You can also use social media services like Facebook and Twitter as outreach tools or sites like Groupon to offer special deals. Include photos, customer testimonials, sewing services, contact information and hours of operation.

What Will You do to Make Your Sewing Time Profitable?

There are many ways on how you can monetize your talent in sewing. Listed below are the most common ideas worth pondering.

Repair and Alteration Services

It is quite obvious that repairing or altering clothes are less expensive than buying new ones. A simple repair such as damaged zippers, missing buttons, minor tears, and rips can be simply fixed. You can start on this kind of service if you think you are not that confident enough to sew a brand-new garment.

Customized Clothing

You may try to personalize certain clothing or garments as per customers’ needs or desires. They may request you to put logos on school uniforms or some sort of embroidery. And when you’re used to this kind of service, you will be surprised by the many people who would seek your specialty.

Children’s Clothing

Are you fond of children? How about making children’s clothing? Sewing clothes intended for children is fun and at the same time, creating additional income for you and your family. If you haven’t tried making one before, you can start by a trial-and-error process. It’s so easy to do. Just get a child’s cloth, and check the way it was sewn, and try it yourself. You will see the progress along the way!


Quilting needs some expertise and a special sewing machine. But if this is one of your passions, you can have a stable flow of income if you can provide yourself with the right equipment and the necessary expertise.

Home Décor Making

Curtains are always on the trend, and it is easy to make one out of so many designs. Others items that you can sew are pillows, blankets, seat covers, table cloths, just to name a few. There are many available designs that you could choose from. It is better if you have a home décor catalog ready for your potential customer to see. In this way, you are offering them value and at the same time, earn a side income. It’s a win-win situation.

Teach Sewing

If you think you have what it takes, then you can conduct a one-on-one tutorial on how to sew. Many people, especially women are very much interested in learning the art of sewing. Other wealthy ones have their sewing machines in their homes. Aside from potential earnings, sewing also improved hand-eye coordination, thus enhancing your motor skills.

Making and selling your sewing products in the market

If you are already fully equipped, then making your products and selling them on online platforms would allow you financial freedom. For example, you are good at quilting, then post your products and who knows that someone might get interested in it and place bulk orders! There are many beautiful crafts that you can create. With a little help from your imagination and creativity, you can certainly make excellent crafts for sale.

Making gifts and accessories

Yes, an ideal way to earn extra income is by sewing gifts and accessories to your customers. From simple tote bags, purses, cellphone holders, pot holders, to soft little toys, all of these can be done without any complex pattern needed. For example, a cellphone holder can be sewn in less than 30 minutes. Be sure to make assorted gift-giving ideas to ensure a variety of selection.


What if you can make a nice baby dress out of a vintage dress of yours? How about book bags or shirts for a sports team? These and more are in-demand projects and require personalized designs and arts. By personalizing your sewing products, you can be the resource person not just in your place, but within nearby areas as well.

Wedding gowns and other bridal accessories

This requires a certain high level of knowledge. But if you are confident enough that you can create elegant and stunning designs, then this is worth trying. Wedding gowns are so expensive yet memorable to the bride. You may also try to sew different and assorted gowns intended for any other occasion. One smart idea to earn is to make them available for rent. If you succeed in renting gowns, you will be experiencing a passive income.


Who among us is not using an apron whenever in the kitchen? Sewing an apron, with a touch of personalization is a sure hit. You can sell your aprons within the neighborhood and even online. Be sure to put some fascinating designs such as multiple pockets and holders for certain utensils. Aprons are very easy to sew and you can finish a simple one in less than 10 minutes. You can even utilize your vintage dress in making cute aprons.

Those smart ideas above are just a few of the many projects you can make out of sewing. It may take time for you to learn how to sew a bridal gown or seat covers that require almost perfect patterns and accurate measurements. But with your passion for sewing, coupled with your burning desire to learn more than the basics, monetizing your sewing skill is very possible indeed.

How to Make Money Through Quilting

You don’t have to quilt to start a quilting business. There are plenty of ideas to find your niche in the world of quilting businesses.

Making and selling quilting kits is one niche market. Beginner quilters would purchase quilting kits. They are your target market. As you plan your quilting kits, keep in mind some of the obstacles a beginning quilter would face and strive to overcome them.

For instance, a beginning quilter might be daunted by all the patterns out there from which to choose. If a beginner selects a difficult pattern, chances are that the project will never be finished and the beginner might never try quilting again! To avoid that, select simple quilt patterns for your quilting kits.

Another obstacle beginning quilters face is fabric selection. Your quilting kit will have the fabric pieces with it, taking the guess work out of color coordinating and fabric selection.

Go ahead and cut the pattern pieces for your quilting kits, too. Beginners will especially love this! You could offer intermediate level quilters with another option. For the slightly more advanced quilter, you could print (or trace) the patterns onto fabric and allow the quilter to cut them out. Take into consideration how much time this might take, however.

Don’t forget to include threads and even a needle for hand stitching!

There are many different levels at which you could offer quilting kits. You could make kits for quilt block pillows, wall hangings, lap quilts or full size quilts. You could also compile kits for quilted toys and dolls.

Another niche market for quilting kits could revolve around holiday themes. Offer kits that will make ornaments and other decorations.

How will you sell your quilting kits? Many have dreams of mass market production, but you can sell your quilting kits without a contract from a large chain store! Consider selling the kits from your own website or Internet store. You could even sell them from an online auction site/store.

Small, classified line ads are an inexpensive way to advertise if you choose to advertise in craft magazines. Don’t overlook all the free publications in your particular area, either. A lot of newspapers or local tabloid sized magazines offer free classifieds.

Writing an effective classified line ad is not hard. Keep the information short and sweet, and don’t forget to include your contact information. A good classified ad might read: “Quilting kits. Perfect for beginners! See designs online at www.mywebsitename.com.”

You will also need to consider how to package your kits. The first way that comes to mind (and probably the easiest) is to include the fabric pieces, threads, needle and good instructions in a resealable plastic bag. The idea is to keep the kit simple for your buyer but to make money for your business. So, the less paper you include for directions, the more profitable your kit. But, make sure you include all necessary directions!

For instance, your detailed directions could fit on one side of paper or card stock. On the other side, take a photo of a completed quilt block from your kit. Make sure to include your business name and contact information on that side as well.

Home computers and inexpensive color laser printers make professional printing very affordable. Consider investing in a laser printer if you will be printing your own directions. Copy printed by inkjet method smears and runs if it gets wet.

When you assemble your kit, make sure the sheet or cardstock is inserted in the bag so that the photo of the completed quilt or block faces outside. This gives your customer a chance to see what they are purchasing and an example of how it should look upon completion.

3 Ways to Make Money From Fabrics

If clothes are your passion, making money from it with enough effort should not be a problem. The odds will increase even more if you add the internet to your strategy. Here are some ideas to consider.

1. Starting Print-on-Demand Business with T-shirts and Hoodies

Print on demand is the first suggestion on the list. More and more people are looking to wear custom-made merchandise like t-shirts or hoodies. Mugs and other products are also popular, even if it is purchased as a novelty or personal gift to someone.

Starting a venture like this will take time as you will need to research the market and work on attracting customers. Thankfully, there are services to make everything easier. Printify’s print on demand bestsellers is one example.

Once things pick up, you can look to scale the business and raise brand awareness. Be sure to add new designs consistently, especially when things start to stagnate, and you are not making as many sales.

2. Online Retail Store

Sell clothes online

If you prefer a more traditional approach, an online retail store is also an option worth exploring. Even if some entrepreneurs cannot deal with inventory, shipping, and other processes themselves and stick to the dropshipping model, it is important to remember that not everyone is the same.

There are still a lot of successful online stores that are not based on dropshipping. Of course, finding a reliable supplier and marketing are going to be some of the biggest challenges, but if you start slow and scale the business, you ought to see success eventually.

3. Marketplace for Renting Clothes

Not everyone can afford to purchase clothes. Rental stores are also a common thing, and it is no surprise to see more of them appearing on the internet as well.

The business model itself is a bit tricky because you need to decide on the kind of clothes you want to rent. Wedding dresses, tuxedos, and party costumes are some of the most popular options. And since so many people are looking for a store using the internet, you stand to gain a big advantage by using your knowledge in SEO and other types of internet marketing. 

Can You make a Living Selling Quilts?

According to Google Trends, the past 4 years have been good to the quilt selling retailers. There is a strong market and it is consistent enough to warrant trying to sell your creation through different methods.

The key is to find your target audience if you are selling online or through traditional means. There are those groups of people who truly see the value of your work and the value of a homemade quilt. They will pay the price you have set, you just have to find them.

That means you do not try to sell to everyone. Finding your target audience takes a little work but the results should be better than a generic ‘sell to everyone’ concept. What you need to do is search the internet on how to find your target audience and what SEO strategies should work for you.

It is possible as there is a market for homemade quilts. In fact, it is almost a $4 billion industry. But you are going to face some stiff competition. The heavily desired Amish quilts on average cost about $1000 but you don’t have the Amish reputation helping you make sales.

Then, there are about 16 million quilters in America alone. That is roughly 1 out of every 20 Americans quilt, sell or give their products away to the other 19. Then if you are a dedicated quilter, you may have to spend about $13,000 on tools and supplies plus have about $6,000 worth of fabric in their stash at any given moment.

Then if you use a machine, you are looking at spending roughly $10,000 to $30,000 on a good sewing machine with all the bells and whistles you need to make a great quilt.

Yes, it is possible to make money selling homemade quilts but you need to decide how much you are going to spend on this enterprise. Knowing the costs helps you see what you need to do to make any money.

How Much Money Can You Make Selling Quilt Patterns?

The average wage in Australia is AUD$85,000 (this is US$60,000). You need to sell 6,000 patterns (at $10) a year to make a US$60,000 wage.

The median wage in the US is $45,000. (Given the cost of living in Australia is higher, the two are roughly comparable.) You need to sell 4,500 patterns a year to earn that wage.

This is why those in the quilting industry have to work hard at developing multiple sources of income – books, courses, workshops, fabric design, offering advertising, using affiliate links, accepting sponsorship deals to try and earn a living wage. They really have to hustle!

How do You Make Money From Sewing Projects?

Sewing is such an amazing skill to have! If you know how to sew or have the ambition to learn, you can make money sewing at home and even build your own online craft business.

Sewing business ideas to make money sewing at home.
  • You can start your own Etsy store,
  • Create your own website and online store
  • List your sewing projects on Amazon Handmade
  • Sell at craft fairs
  • Open your own local shop
  • Sell on consignment in a local shop
  • Do alterations from your home.
  • Sell at farmer’s markets
  • Sell on Ebay
  • Start a sewing blog to teach others to sew and share fun sewing projects
  • Sell your sewing patterns on Ebay or in your own store on Shopify
  • Start a membership where you teach your members to sew or share your own patterns
  • Make an online sewing course to teach others to sew
  • Start a YouTube channel to teach others to sew

What Can You Make With Patchwork?

Here’s a nice collection you’ll want to keep handy for scrap buster projects, also nice for beginner quilters looking to gain a little experience sewing with small fabric pieces.

Sewing Machine Cover: Cute little project to help keep your machine dust-free.

Sweet Bag: Made with squares of fabric (for outer bag), lining and narrow ribbon or cord for drawstrings.

Kindle Case: Super simple and easy to put together and a great way to protect the screen of your Kindle while stowed away in a purse or backpack.

Scottie Dog Softie: Just like old patchwork quilts, no two Scottie Dogs are alike – but they all have personality.

Heart Sachet Sets: A lavender-scented sachet is a simple luxury that makes a nice gift.

Patchwork Pillow: Make a whimsical disappearing nine-patch pillow for your child’s room or your sofa in no time flat and it’s a great project for beginners.

Lunchbag Tutorial: Made with linen and a strip of patchwork, snap closure (or velcro works too if you prefer).

Miniature Pincushions: Each one is like a tiny version of a larger quilt, but they are a lot quicker to make.

Reversible Bag: Nice gift-worthy drawstring bag that can be used for whatever you like.

Notebook Cover Tutorial: Makes a finished notebook cover that measures 15″ x 9″ but you can easily adjust the size as needed.

Eye Pillow Tutorial: Made with linen and fabric scraps of choice. Filled with flaxseed.

Teapot Pattern: Cute patchwork block that can be used to make potholders or whatever you like. Free template download available.

What Sewn Items Sell Best?

Sewing for profit – Things that are great to sew to sell

What is The Easiest Thing to Sew And Sell?

Craft Supply Pouches

These pouches may be very similar to travel pouches. But you might make them larger or include separate pockets for different types of materials.

Grocery Bags

A lot of today’s consumers prefer to bring reusable bags to the grocery store instead of using paper or plastic. These bags are usually fairly straightforward to make.

Lunch Boxes

You can also include some insulation in a small tote so people can use it as a lunch bag for work or school.

Tea Towels

If you’re interested in selling home goods, simple fabric tea towels are usually a good place to start.

Cloth Napkins

Cloth napkins are also pretty simple. You can even add hand-stitched borders or embroider little monograms.

Oven Mitts

Oven mitts and pot holders are very practical kitchen items that you can easily make with some quilted fabric.

Place Mats

Help people protect their tables with some decorative place mats for their plates and utensils.


For those who want to add privacy or style to their homes, stitch curtains out of stylish fabrics.


Coasters are very small. So they should be easy to make and to ship if you’re interested in opening an online shop. Just make sure you include enough layers so they actually protect people’s tables.

Drink Cozies

Drink cozies are small items that fit around cold bottles or cans to insulate beverages.


Aprons can come in a variety of sizes and styles. You can make vintage inspired pieces or even stitch punny sayings onto them.

Yoga Mat Straps

Help people transport their personal mats to yoga class or other fitness activities with simple straps made to fit over their shoulders.

Camera Straps

You could also sell straps that attach to DSLR cameras and market to professional or hobby photographers.

Phone Charging Station

Give people an easy way to charge their phones by stitching a simple pocket that the phone can sit in while it charges on the wall.

Can I Make a Living Sewing?

People trained in sewing can work in a number of different industries. Generally, they create or repair things made of fabric or leather.


Tailors design, create, change and fix clothes. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that sewing and tailoring jobs were expected to decrease 4% from 2019 to 2029. The BLS also stated that tailors, dressmakers and custom sewers earned a median salary of $32,640 per year as of May 2020.

Shoe Worker

Shoe workers create and repair shoes and related items, such as luggage and saddles. According to the BLS, job positions for these workers will decrease by 10% between 2019 and 2029. Shoe and leather workers and repairers made a median salary of $30,550 as of May 2020. Those working for shoe stores had the highest salaries.


Patternmakers create patterns that clothing and other items can be created from. In addition, they may mark and cut fabric. The BLS predicts that job opportunities for fabric and apparel patternmakers will decrease by 11% between 2019 and 2029. The median wage for patternmakers was $49,680 as of May 2020. Those working in specialized design services generally earn more than patternmakers in other industries.

Fabric Mender

Fabric menders repair things made of fabric that are not clothes, such as curtains, bedding and outdoor structures. The BLS predicts that, between 2019 and 2029, positions for fabric menders (fabric and apparel patternmakers) will decrease by 11%. As of May 2020, fabric menders made a median salary of $49,680.

Many sewing professionals can learn their trade on the job or through an apprenticeship program, certificate program or courses at a vocational center, where they learn to make patterns for garments, repair shoes or mend fabric items like curtains. While entry into this career field involves relatively little training, job openings for patternmakers, shoe workers, tailors and fabric menders are expected to decline sharply in the coming years.

What Handmade Items Are in Demand?

There is a huge demand for handmade and craft goods all over the world, so both the hobbyist and the business pro can capitalize on the various things that people can make and sell.

And it’s easier than ever before to start an eCommerce store and sell your crafts online. So, you can start running your own business pretty much instantly – from the comfort of your home.

We’ve come up with 5 product ideas that you can make and sell, so roll up those sleeves and get started.

1. Beauty products 
Multicolored Soap Stacks

The beauty industry is vast, but it’s the natural beauty niche that’s growing crazy fast.

People want to know what their products are made of, how they are made, and whether they’ve been tested on animals.

So, if you’ve been gifting friends and family soap bars, bath bombs, and body scrubs for Christmas and birthdays, you could be sitting on a fortune. 

Selling handmade beauty products is beginner-friendly since they’re relatively easy and fast to produce. 

Still, you should consider a few things before embarking on your natural cosmetics eCommerce journey:

  • Check for potential ingredient restrictions. This is particularly important for online businesses that ship worldwide. Do your research beforehand and avoid upsetting overseas clients. You can always swap ingredients with others to comply with local rules and regulations.
  • Keep expiration dates in mind. Be realistic about your products’ shelf-life and don’t ship products that are past their prime.
  • Make sure your production process is OK with local authorities. Handmaking beauty products is easy and fast, but is it legal? Check that wherever you’re making your bath bombs meets your government’s health and safety regulations, even if it’s your kitchen.  
2. Clothing 
Clothes for selling online

The handmade fashion industry has never done better than now, a time when people are turning towards sustainability and eco-consciousness.

Making and selling clothing items online is a great way to make money online if you want to put your sewing machine to work and sell made-to-measure pieces online.

But it’s also great for those who want to run a clothing business, but can’t sew. How?

As long as you have the design part down, you can use print-on-demand services and start selling the clothing items you make – in a matter of a few hours.

To start your own tailor-made clothing empire, keep a few things in mind: 

  • Source your supplies carefully. You want to stand out, whether it’s for the vegan leather that you use or for the limited-supply jean that you source from Japan. The clothes that you make and sell should be memorable, for all the right (and ethical) reasons.
  • Get your marketing right. In a niche as saturated as fashion, it pays to come up with a solid marketing strategy. No matter what clothing items you’re selling, you need to get it in front of potential customers, so you better educate yourself on all the hottest marketing strategies.
  • Collaborate with designers. If you choose to go the print-on-demand route and aren’t keen on making your t-shirt designs yourself, you can get freelancers or creative agencies to do it instead. While it will cost you up-front, your t-shirts will most likely look better too.
3. Ceramics 
Handmade pottery and ceramics products being made by a person

If you’ve secretly dreamt of putting your pottery skills to profitable use, why not set up your own eCommerce store and start selling your creations?

There is always a demand for unique pieces, be it for one’s home or to gift, and you could be shipping all over the globe.

If you’re a hobbyist, you’ll already have most of the necessary equipment available and some experience under your belt too.

But what if you’re a total beginner? Sign up for a weekend course, borrow a few books on the topic from your local library, and look if you can rent some equipment before you commit to buying.

Talk to your local community projects and colleges too. They usually allow shared use of their studios, giving you access to a kiln and other tools.

Here are a few tips to get your ceramics eCommerce store up and running: 

  • Focus on uniqueness. With so many ceramic products out there already available, you need to carve a niche out for yourself. Think about your designs, but also about your brand values. Make your business top of mind when people are looking for that ‘something special.’
  • Share what goes on behind the scenes. Grow your online presence by showing your clientele what goes into making a mug or a plate from scratch. Depending on your niche, you might want to run a weekly newsletter, post on social media, or on your store’s blog.  
  • Create enough stock. Have enough products ready for when you launch your eCommerce store. You’ll be better off working at your own pace and keeping a steady inventory, rather than putting in long nights from the start.
4. Jewelry

Jewelry is one of the most popular things to make and sell from home, but it also one of the most saturated niches too.

While you don’t have to be a trained silversmith to make some extra money from jewelry, you do have to a mastermind in differentiating yourself from others.

If you know how to make woven bracelets and beaded necklaces, you’ve got a good foundation, but take it a few steps further.

How can you make your jewelry unique? Perhaps offer customization? The sky’s the limit when it comes to design and materials.

To start selling jewelry, consider the following: 

  • Pick a strong niche. You have to have a strong niche and offer something fresh and new to the market. It could be a brand new design or innovative materials. Find out exactly what your target audience wants and what your competitors lack.
  • Do your research. The trends in the fashion and accessory world change overnight, so make sure you study the market and keep an eye on search trends on Google too. You don’t want to spend time trying to sell a product that nobody is interested in.
  • Invest in product photography. Taking good, studio-quality photos is not exactly easy, but it’s trickier still with items that can be as small, detailed, and shiny as jewelry. You should upgrade your photography kit or hire a pro to do photography for you.
5. Subscription boxes
Boxes on a white table

Finding a subscription box in a pile of bills is one of the best ways to cheer up anyone’s day.

If you have a knack for creating collections of items that go well together, you should consider setting up your own subscription box service. 

You can base your boxes around certain themes (think video games, books, or even countries). Depending on your price plans, you could include snacks and drinks in your boxes, alongside small items like notebooks and even toys. 

Offering discounts for anyone subscribing for longer than just one month is a good way to ensure you have a steady stream of income.

Combine that with a good social media marketing strategy and a referral program, and you could be in the fast lane to achieve eCommerce success.

Here are a few great ideas to get your subscription box business off the ground: 

  • Pop culture. Many blockbuster films, TV series, and video games have huge fan bases. Base your boxes around one of them to get a strong start in your ‘make and sell’ business. 
  • Beauty products and cosmetics. The beauty industry is huge. Help people find their new favorite products that are not only trendy but also cater to their needs ( dry skin vs. acne).
  • Clothing and apparel. You could curate monthly boxes for particular subculture groups (streetwear, pop culture t-shirts, anime lovers), or you could focus on particular quality pieces (e.g. scarves or ties). 

Is Sewing a Good Career?

It is not that difficult to be a seamstress in an industrial manufacturing plant. You just need to know how to use industrial sewing machines, work fast and work safely. The pay may not be great but it is a good steady job as clothing stores always need more designs or fill their orders.

That isn’t the only way to make a career out of sewing. There are a lot of career fields associated with textiles and fabric where you can use your sewing knowledge to have a great career.

Some examples would be pattern maker, pattern grader, marker, cutter, spreader, finisher and a whole lot more in just this one aspect of the textile industry. There are probably over 150 career-ready employment opportunities where you can make a career out of sewing.

All you have to do is have a little confidence in yourself and submit the applications.

For example, tailoring is expected to lose 6% of the jobs in that sub-field over the next 10 years. It may decline even faster but it is hard to predict. Another example is.

Pattern maker which is expected to lose about 13% of its employment positions over the same time period.

Shoe maker and fabric mender are expected to lose the least amount of jobs over the next decade. They are predicted to lose 3 and 2 percent in that time frame. What will take their place is anyone’s guess but if you have a nose for textiles and keep your eye open, you should be able to spot rising trends and be ready for them.

What Does a Seamstress Make Per Hour?

The average hourly pay for a Work From Home Seamstress in the United States is $27.96 an hour.

While ZipRecruiter is seeing hourly wages as high as $65.14 and as low as $6.97, the majority of Work From Home Seamstress wages currently range between $12.98 (25th percentile) to $37.26 (75th percentile) across the United States.

The average pay range for a Work From Home Seamstress varies greatly (by as much as $24.28), which suggests there may be many opportunities for advancement and increased pay based on skill level, location and years of experience.

What Should I Charge Per Hour For Sewing?

If one decides to become a freelance seamstress, working out the rates will be tricky at first. Most people just feel guilty because they have to charge others for their work. In any case, family members are the ones who are most likely to use our services at first.

Nevertheless, each freelance seamstress can determine her own rates and decide for herself how much she wants to charge. On average, the hourly rate is about $20, depending on the state and the level of expertise. But if you check out Upwork, you will see that seamstresses are charging about $35 per hour on average.

However, if you are not sure where to start, then just take the average sewing rate and add it to the cost of the materials. That’s how much you should charge for the projects. Still, know that there won’t be any money left for maintenance. So if you are just a beginner, start with this formula but make sure you up the prices as soon as possible. Once you get better at something, you will be free to charge more for your expertise.

How Much Money Can You Make as a Seamstress?

As you begin your career as a seamstress, you may seek employment in an alterations shop. In this position, you would be responsible for altering hemlines, sewing on buttons and embellishments, as well as, repairing torn zippers, just to name a few. 

Your duties may also require you to re-design clothing to give them an up-to-date appearance or to make adjustments for body size. Alteration positions usually pay $12.00 to $24.00 per hour, depending on your experience and scope of work.

A tailor primarily alters men’s clothing, as opposed to the seamstress who focuses on women’s clothing.  They earn a salary of approximately $29,170 annually, comparable to that of the alterations seamstress.

In the factory setting, sewing machine operators are hired to manufacture clothing, often in an assembly line type fashion. Salaries can range from between $26,250 and $37,090 per year, depending on size of factory.

In addition to alterations, some seamstresses design, fit and create original, custom designs for their clients. They also often own their own business. Dressmakers in this type of setting earn between $32,150 to $50,450 annually, depending on clientele.

A seamstress salary can vary significantly depending on the type of employer and geographic location. The median annual seamstress salary nationally as of May 2019 was ​$31,520​, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The lowest 10 percent earned less than ​$20,800​, while the highest 10 percent made more than ​$54,740​.

For seamstresses who are paid an hourly rate for sewing, such as those who work part time, the median wage was ​$15.15​ per hour. A median salary is the midpoint in a list of salaries, where half earned more and half earned less.

Salaries were highest in large, general merchandise stores at ​$50,730​, while specialized design services paid ​$40,360,​ and performing arts companies paid ​$39,270.​ As with most occupations, seamstress income was highest on the West Coast and in the Northeast: ​$45,090​ in California, ​$42,700​ in Washington, D.C. and ​$41,450​ in Massachusetts.

Large metropolitan areas also paid more than smaller, nonmetropolitan areas. For example, salaries were ​$52,870​ in the San Francisco/Oakland/Hayward metro area and ​$36,750​ in the nonmetropolitan, central New Hampshire area.

How do You Become a Seamstress?

A professional seamstress makes a living by sewing. A seamstress’ career relies on referrals, so it’s important to build a strong client base. A professional seamstress learns skills on the job by working with experienced professionals or by taking alteration and sewing classes.

For this profession, you should develop a portfolio of your best work and consider earning optional certification. Seamstresses should have a few key skills, including:

  • Attention to detail
  • Creativity
  • Manual dexterity
  • Customer-service skills
  • Ability to operate and use sewing equipment and tools

According to PayScale.com, seamstresses earned a median annual salary of $34,191 in 2020. If you’re interested in becoming a seamstress, there’s a few things to consider. Continue reading to learn how to become a seamstress.

Learn to Sew

Learning how to sew is a vital first step in becoming a seamstress. There are a variety of ways to achieve this goal. For instance, many seamstresses begin their education by reading books in order to learn basic sewing techniques and strategies. Alternatively, aspiring seamstresses can take advantage of free resources on the Internet, such as videos, downloadable patterns, and tutorials or attend beginner-sewing classes at a local community center.

Aspiring professional seamstresses should be able to sew both by hand and by using machinery. They should be able to identify and use a variety of sewing tools, including:

  • Measuring tapes
  • Rulers
  • Sergers
  • Trimming shears
  • Needles
  • Seam rippers
  • Sewing machines
Take Seamstress Classes and Earn Certification

In order to perform complex tasks, it’s best to find a community college or vocational program that offers advanced seamstress classes and textile courses which teach pattern making, garment construction, and fitting and alteration.

Enrollment in seamstress school helps an aspiring seamstress with concepts regarding fabric choice, pattern selection, professional sewing, and contemporary sewing. Completion of seamstress training results in a diploma or certificate, which shows qualification for employment.

To find employment, it’s essential for aspiring seamstresses to have a portfolio showcasing their talent and best work. The portfolio should contain photographs of altered clothing items or constructed original pieces. Professional seamstresses can begin compiling their portfolios while attending school and should add samples to them throughout their careers.

The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates an employment decline of four percent for years 2019-2029 for all tailors, dressmakers, and custom sewers. Having an impressive portfolio is important to stand out as there may be more competition in this career field.

Certification is not required in this field, but voluntary certifications exist for seamstresses interested in standing out in the field. The Association of Sewing and Design Professionals offers the Master Sewing and Design Professional certification, which evaluates applicants for competency in seven major categories. The certification program covers advanced sewing techniques and concepts, such as texture, proportion, fit, and professional practices.

Gain Experience with a Professional Seamstress

Novice seamstresses typically work for an experienced professional in order to gain experience with complex sewing techniques and alterations. Apprenticeship opportunities are sometimes available, though the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that such opportunities are rare.

Seamstresses may be able to find employment as an assistant seamstress in a small business environment, like a department store, bridal boutique, dry cleaners, or a shop specializing in alterations. Working alongside an established seamstress educates a beginner about operating a small business.

Develop a Business Plan

After gaining relevant work experience, seamstresses may choose to start their own businesses. A self-employed seamstress may decide to deal in all sorts of custom creations and alterations or may opt to pursue a specialized niche, such as bridal gown alterations or creating dresses and costumes for pageants. Successful seamstresses who start their own businesses focus on creating marketing campaigns, attracting clientele, and maintaining a budget.

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Professional seamstresses benefit from obtaining membership in an organization, such as the Association of Sewing and Design Professionals (ASDP). Professional organizations provide a number of resources, including business advice, networking opportunities, vendor discounts, annual challenges and competitions, client referrals, and continuing education options.

Continue Your Seamstress Training

Seamstresses have the ability to continue their education throughout their careers through classes, trade shows, workshops, competitions, and conventions. Continuing education is required if a seamstress wants to renew his or her Master Sewing and Design Professional certification annually. By continuing their education, seamstresses stay current on fashion trends and sewing technologies.

As you continue to train, you could apply your knowledge in similar jobs, such as a tailor, fashion designer, sewing machine operator, dressmaker, alterations specialist, and custom sewer. Whether you decide to start a business, look into freelance opportunities, or want to work for a well-known fashion design company, you’ll gain more opportunities the more experience you gain.

To sum up, seamstress qualifications do not include a degree, though taking some courses in sewing and fashion are helpful. Other skills to learn to be a seamstress include customer service, creativity, and using a sewing machine and other equipment. Working under a professional seamstress and gaining voluntary certification in the field can assist in finding employment.

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