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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My heat press and cutter have arrived. I have a T-shirt distributor nearby, so no shipping costs. So here's the deal..... There is a neighborhood day event coming up soon, that is hosted by a local church, and I decided to get my feet wet I would participate as a vendor!! :eek: I know, I'm freaking out too! My main business is supposed to be rhinestoning with sticky flock, but since I have not learned all the ins and outs, I don't want to go that route, yet unless it's a really simple design. What should I do???!!! What would you do??!!! I figured this was a way to get out there, so I need suggestions! Do I order transfers, and blank tees and apply them? If yes, how many? The event is for 6-7 hours. I was thinking of some religious themed ones along with a few motivational themed ones. Please advise on what to do...t-shirt brands, sizes, how many designs to stock, how many shirts to bring...If I ever needed your help...It is now!!
Also, please advise on the type of transfer that holds up well, and not cheap. As my first go, I don't want to screw this up, especially since I see some of these people very often!! :)

Thanks!!
 

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Well, you could just load up on some transfer and so those, or you could try to learn how to operate the cutter and make your own rhinestone transfers on the fly. You forgot the learning curve. True you want to get your name out there, but until you learn what you are doing you could be making junk and that will only give your business a bad reputation.

In the rhinestone section here you will find several people who make transfers. Some are stock transfers and some are custom ones. Buy those. Do not press the stones on the shirts prior to the event. You will want to do that there. Otherwise you might end up with shirts you can't get rid of or use for something else. If you're going for adults, get med, large, and extra large, and maybe a couple of 2x and a few smalls. Also make sure you will have access to an electrical outlet for your press.

But I still suggest to master your craft before you try to sell anything. You don't want customers coming back with defective products because you did something wrong.
 

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First off, RELAX! :)

I'd order some religious transfers if you're not comfortable with the rhinestones... you may show some samples of rhinestones to take orders from if you can do that...

I use hanes/gildan/fruit of the loom/jerzee 50/50 shirts, jsut whatever is the lesser expense when I order them.

Hard to say about numbers and sizes, but I'd try to have at least a few in Youth S/M/L and Adult S/M/L/XL and be prepared to take orders for sizes/designs you may not have...

Just remember one thing: In the public's eyes you're the expert and the professional, just be nice and don't "sell" them, get to know them a little and let them tell you they want to buy.

Good Luck! Hope this helps! Alan
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, you could just load up on some transfer and so those, or you could try to learn how to operate the cutter and make your own rhinestone transfers on the fly. You forgot the learning curve. True you want to get your name out there, but until you learn what you are doing you could be making junk and that will only give your business a bad reputation.

In the rhinestone section here you will find several people who make transfers. Some are stock transfers and some are custom ones. Buy those. Do not press the stones on the shirts prior to the event. You will want to do that there. Otherwise you might end up with shirts you can't get rid of or use for something else. If you're going for adults, get med, large, and extra large, and maybe a couple of 2x and a few smalls. Also make sure you will have access to an electrical outlet for your press.

But I still suggest to master your craft before you try to sell anything. You don't want customers coming back with defective products because you did something wrong.
Thanks for your reply. My point exactly on the rhinestones. I am not comfortable yet with what I have learned, that is why since it is a community event, I figured how hard could pressing on some transfers be, that are religious themed, etc. There will not be access to any electrical outlets, since the event is outside. So since it is for the community, I thought transfers + heat press is an easy way to go. Now I just need to know the brand of shirts that are good for men and women. Also, a few good transfer sites.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
First off, RELAX! :)

I'd order some religious transfers if you're not comfortable with the rhinestones... you may show some samples of rhinestones to take orders from if you can do that...

I use hanes/gildan/fruit of the loom/jerzee 50/50 shirts, jsut whatever is the lesser expense when I order them.

Hard to say about numbers and sizes, but I'd try to have at least a few in Youth S/M/L and Adult S/M/L/XL and be prepared to take orders for sizes/designs you may not have...

Just remember one thing: In the public's eyes you're the expert and the professional, just be nice and don't "sell" them, get to know them a little and let them tell you they want to buy.

Good Luck! Hope this helps! Alan
Thanks Alan! No I will not be doing any rhinestone selling, if by that time I have made a few designs, as you stated I will take them on a pre-order basis. Hanes/Gilden/Fruit of the Loom/Jerzee are they all pre-shrunk? Dont want to hear of anyone's shirts shrinking!lol I will order a few youth and adult and most of the males in this market are XL and 2XL, so I will make sure I stock up those also. I will also be ready to take orders. Thanks for the words, it really helped!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
If you sell you anyone under age 12 make sure your supplies are in compliance with federal guidelines. Also, make sure you have a vendor's license if you live in the USA and your state has a sales tax on clothing.
Hi thanks for your reply. Yes, I am aware of the guidelines on the rhinestones, when I do start selling it will be for those over 12, if not I will use the stones that are approved. Anyone know of any good transfer sites, and how to price the shirts? Can't wait until I am a pro at these, and can offer support to the newbies coming in! :) Thanks for all of your assistance.

PS...I could do Vinyl also, but again I would like to take more time with learning my program, I can be a bit of a critic with my work, so that is why I may stick with heat transfers this go round.
 

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Thanks Alan! No I will not be doing any rhinestone selling, if by that time I have made a few designs, as you stated I will take them on a pre-order basis. Hanes/Gilden/Fruit of the Loom/Jerzee are they all pre-shrunk? Dont want to hear of anyone's shirts shrinking!lol I will order a few youth and adult and most of the males in this market are XL and 2XL, so I will make sure I stock up those also. I will also be ready to take orders. Thanks for the words, it really helped!!

You're welcome, and the shirts I use are 50/50 so there's no shrinkage, plus after it's washed a bunch there won't be little balls of cotton and fuzz on them like 100% cotton does.

Good Luck! Alan
 

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Hi there,

I just got your email regarding this so I jumped onto the forum to see if anyone had replied to you.

I can only tell you from my personal experience and preference what my thoughts are. I am such a stress case when someone orders a shirt from me. They could tell me medium but I still worry that the style that I'm choosing doesn't have the right fit for them. I do stock up on certain styles and sizes in black that I know sell well in my area.

I would have a hard time buying pre-made transfers because I would be afraid people would want a different color stone, vinyl, etc. I just got burned by a customer who asked me to make several shirts for her to try to sell at her daughter's softball games. She hasn't sold a single one because people want a different color shirt or style shirt, etc.

If you are going to do this, I would suggest that you make yourself a few shirts to hang up as examples and then make yourself a portfolio of designs that you have either come up with or purchased elsewhere. Just get a 3 ring binder and print out the image of the designs and put them in clear cover sheets. Get some business cards made up to hand out and bring some order forms. That way you can take orders and accept payment right then and there so that you can go home and get to work. Then you're not out a ton of cash on shirts and transfers that might not sell.

Additionally, I recently got a few transfers at a convention that I knew my little sister (she's 17) would like. I had her here and went to press one onto a shirt for her. 2 of the stones didn't have glue on the back and I don't use the types of stones that were on them so I couldn't replace them! Fortunately it was just my sister and not a paying customer.

I don't want to scare you, but I also don't want you to be super unprepared at this event. Since you're just starting out, the fact that you're there with a table and a portfolio just to advertise the fact that you DO this type of thing will be really good for you. You'll be surprised at how many people take your card and don't call you right away. But a month from now when they need some shirts blinged up for their soccer team moms, they'll remember you and give you a call. That's really the kind of business you want anyway... You don't want to start off on shaky ground and not super confident in what you're selling, right?
 

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Are you gonna let your customers pick out the transfers and then heat press them or are you gonna just have the t-shirts already made? Just saying don't do what I did years back when I did my first event I pressed several shirts beforehand and went all out, then we had bad weather that whole weekend and only sold a few, literally... To this day I am still stuck with them and give them away on occasion. It all turned out great considering I met a lot of good people (vendors). Good luck, everything will go awesome!

Sent from my SGH-T679 using T-Shirt Forums
 

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If you are completely uncomfortable with what you're doing right now and don't have time for any experimentation at all, you may be better off simply missing the event. If you feel you can be ready for it, more power to you. But you don't want your very first sales event with shirts where the stones fell off a week later to be how people remember you. This is why I have not yet actually started my company yet (sign vinyl and t-shirt transfers) because I have been doing small projects as gifts/test runs to make sure I know what the heck I'm doing before I start actually charging for anything.

Heat pressing pre-made transfers definitely sounds like the better solution, but even then I wouldn't sell pressed shirts without making a few myself to determine best press settings and several washings to ensure that everything went well.

I rushed and did bad jobs on a handmade product I used to make a decade ago and pretty much destroyed my reputation at the time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks all for your reply, if I decide to do the event it will only be inspirational heat transfers. I'm too much of an obsessor to do the stones ths early. I'm the type that I have to be comfortable in my craft. With the transfers, I can purchase a few, and some tees, and wash them to make sur the transfers hold up very well. With the heat transfer companies on here, some being preferred vendors, I'm hoping the products will holdup well. :). Thanks again!
 

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If you won't have electicity then I would go in with the expectation that you have paid for your spot as advertisement and that you're not really looking to sell much. At these type events many people won't order items to be delivered later, unless they know you personally. But they may take cards and may call at a later date. Like others mentioned if you try to preprint the shirts then you may end up with left over stock that you'll need to sell at a later date, so make sure the image/design is generic enough you won't be stuck with it for years to come.
 

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... I'm freaking out too! ...I have not learned all the ins and outs, ... What should I do???!!! What would you do??!!! ...
Thanks!!
Sales 101: Never stop closing! Always sell, sell, sell. Figure the supply out afterward.

That is what I did.

Operate outside of your comfort zone.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

good luck.
 
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