How I Would Make Money with A Side Hustle if I Was Just Starting Out

Jul 28, 2022 | Business Tips for Crafters

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Do you want to turn your craft hobby into a side hustle?  Maybe you have dreams of it becoming your full time business. 

Several years ago I set out to make my crafting side hustle a full time business.  I'm proud to say that it is now a six figure business and I love teaching others how to have this same success.

How did I do it?  Making money with your side hustle takes effort, determination, and a LOT of hustle. The good news is, it is very doable.

The internet is an amazing resource for entrepreneurs, especially those just starting out. Social media and email can connect creators with interested customers like no other time in history. Social media has been a huge part of my success, but it was also the part that took the most time and effort to build.

Getting traction online is a challenging and often frustrating process.  So, for those just getting started, I wouldn't suggest putting all of your time into building a huge social media following. It is important to have a presence but don't worry if you don't have a ton of followers, likes, or comments right away.

I think one of the biggest keys to developing a successful side hustle is to find some quick wins that motivate you to keep going.  Those first few sales will not only build your confidence but they will bring in much needed cash to keep your business going.

To find these quick wins, I would start right here in the community where I live.

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Realtors Love Giving Personalized Gifts

Realtors are a great opportunity for creators trying to make money with their side hustle. They are great self promoters and they aren’t afraid to spend money on marketing.

One of a real estate agent’s favorite marketing tools is giving their clients a personalized gift when they close on their new home. The more unique these gifts, the better.

These personalized, closing gifts are also great for creators that are just starting out. They can be small orders and there is normally plenty of lead time because closing dates are set a few weeks out. You could possibly do these jobs without keeping any additional stock on hand.

If this is a project idea you like, try these steps:

  1. Do a quick internet search and find 3 to 5 realtors in your community.
  2. Give each one a call and ask to set up a meeting to talk about your idea. You might feel more comfortable making your pitch over the phone, but don’t. Definitely don’t do it over email. Why? It’s harder for them to tell you no face to face.
  3. Make the realtor a personalized gift like the one you want them to buy for their clients and take this gift with you to the meeting. The gift should be something you love creating. I love screen printing t-shirts so that is probably what I would create. Signs, tea towels, pillows, door mats or charcuterie boards are all very popular items.  Get creative with something you think their clients would love.
  4. Set a price for your item. Don’t forget to include your time. This is an uncomfortable step for many people, but you need to do it. The realtors are going to ask how much your item costs. Confidently giving them an answer lets them know you are serious and that you will still be in business for their next order.
  5. Get excited and close the deal!  Be sure to leave them a business card or printed proposal so they know how to place their first order.

If one of your prospective clients says no, don’t get discouraged. Turn it into an opportunity. Ask them what product they would be interested in or what you could have done differently. Take their feedback seriously and use it for your next pitch. Someone will say yes and when they do you’ll be off and running.

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Most people sit back and wait for their small business to take off.  That's why many of their businesses never grow.

Most people won’t set up the sales pitch in person. It might be out of your comfort zone (it definitely is for me), but this is the type of hustle it took for me to grow my business quickly. 

Good news is once your new business starts to grow, word of mouth and referrals will likely take over and you can spend less time selling in person. 

 Good luck!


  1. Thanks for the tips. In person is definitely out of my comfort zone but I’m going to give it a try!!

  2. Hello! I am a big fan and have a question !
    I own a sign creative studio♥️ so i use a large 22 inch us cutter machine. If i purchase the starter course will my cutter work?
    clearly different software- but i get that-
    thank you!

  3. Thanks!! Those were great ideas. I will put on my thinking cap and see what I can come up with.


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I’m Jennifer, your go-to for all things vinyl screen printing. I offer both in-person and online classes to help you craft better quality shirts. This blog is full of screen printing inspiration to get your creative juices flowing. Roll up your sleeves and get ready to learn all about screen printing with vinyl!

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