Hipgirl 40 Yards 3/8" Grosgrain Fabric Ribbon Set For Gift Package Wrapping, Hair Bow Clips & Accessories Making, Crafting, Sewing, Wedding Decor, Boy Girl Baby Shower-(20x2yd Solid Boutique Ribbons)
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Old 03-21-2011, 02:51
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Location: Weirton, WV
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Default Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

Please, I need some help!! I have made bows for my granddaughters and nieces for awhile now. People are starting to ask me to sell to them. I am considering starting a small, local bow business since to the best of my knowledge, no one in this area sells bows or any other type of hair accessory. What I need to know is, what type of basic stock should I purchase? Such as size, color and type of ribbon to get my business started. I don't have a lot of money for an initial investment, so I would like to get the what the best value for my money would be. Any help/suggestions regarding this would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-21-2011, 03:59
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

Unfortunately, you'll need to spend some money to get stock. A good place to buy solid grosgrain and some polka dot grosgrain is Gifts International. Prices are very reasonable and so is shipping if you live in the States (I live in Canada).

Also, to get your name out there search for craft shows or Mom to Mom sales. The first mom to mom sale that I did I made way more than I expected.

Really it's your judgment on what you need but I suggest starting with Gifts International for ribbon

I hope this helps and good luck!
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Old 03-21-2011, 07:27
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

I too have been making bows for awhile now I am starting to sell. Alwaysunderpay .com is pretty good on prices but limited in stock.
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Old 03-21-2011, 07:28
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

group buys are always a good way to get things on the cheap, but you have to wait for them.
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Old 03-21-2011, 08:23
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

Thanks for the info. How about colors? It seems every time I go to make a stacked bow or add loops or spikes, I don't have the right color or size. Do you suggest buying the same colors in mulitiple widths and then coordinating the dots and stripes? Is there any way to make sure a print ribbon (like starbursts or little piggies) match the solid?
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Old 03-21-2011, 08:27
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

Quote:
Originally Posted by heatherens View Post
Thanks for the info. How about colors? It seems every time I go to make a stacked bow or add loops or spikes, I don't have the right color or size. Do you suggest buying the same colors in mulitiple widths and then coordinating the dots and stripes? Is there any way to make sure a print ribbon (like starbursts or little piggies) match the solid?
I was here not too long ago and I'm still trying to figure it out lol. The advice I got was to get the main colors (black, white, red, a few pinks, etc.) and get them in all widths. You have to see what widths you use most. I found that I use 3/8" and 7/8". Some people use more 1.5" so it really depends on your stuff.
BUY IN BULK. Do NOT buy ribbon from local craft stores!!! Buy from TRR or RABOM or UB. Those are the main ones I think.
RABOM give you coordinating solids to their prints so I always find that helpful. Even if you look at some places (even on ebay and etsy) that sell ribbon packs, you can find the coordinating colors.
HTH! Good Luck!
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Old 03-21-2011, 09:13
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

I started buying my ribbon from a seller on Ebay who sold packs of coordinating ribbon (1.5", 7/8", 3/8") and you could choose your colors. It was a reasonable amount of ribbon to start out with, at a reasonable cost (not the cheapest you'll get it for, but when starting out you want to have a good variety of colors, so this was my way of affording them).

Next, I bought colors I knew I'd use most of (white, pink, hot pink, etc.) in 50 and 100 yard rolls. This made more sense per yard, but I spent around $200 just on the basics to get stocked up.

I buy prints on sale from JoAnn and Michaels or online from RABOM. So far, I don't do enough business to warrant stocking up on holiday prints, etc., and when I buy on sale the per yard cost is low enough for me.

When I start making a new item, I'll price it out and make sure that the cost of my materials still leaves me a good profit margin even when buying supplies at higher cost for smaller amounts (for instance, making two new headbands with a two pack of buttons from JoAnn) but I also research to see where I can purchase that same (or similar) button in larger quantities at a better cost. That way if an item sells well, I can make more money in the long run by planning ahead for buying the supplies, but if an item doesn't do well, I'm not stuck with hundreds of supplies I won't need.

Hope this helps!
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Old 03-22-2011, 10:09
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Default Re: Assistance in starting a small, local bow business

Thanks so very much for all of your input. It makes alot of sense to do "product testing" before buying in bulk. I was wondering if it would be a good business decision to purchase pre-packaged, coordinated ribbon to experiment with?
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