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Advice in setting up business selling Handmade textile gifts

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  • Advice in setting up business selling Handmade textile gifts


    I have been accepted onto '' and before going ahead I need to gather some expert advice first on the safety aspects and also any other factors I need to consider.

    I design textile gifts for children and adults that could be deemed as toys but my intention was really more bedroom decoration. As examples of some of the things I make (the most popular), I make 'hotchpot' bunnies with floppy ears, horses with ribbon loops for their mane and tails and dogs.

    All my items are stuffed with quality polyfil (passed by furnishings and fire safety regulations), I triple stitch ribbons and my name tag, do not use buttons, use bondaweb and then hand stitch felt applique firmly.

    If I am going to sell on the website I'm assuming I need to be covered for any problems that may arise with an item (even if the item in question has been mistreated which has resulted in stitching coming undone or ribbons chewed etc .) In the current blame/ compensation climate I am conscious that I must protect not only my customers but also myself.

    I believe I need product liability insurance but do I need to get my items passed by a safety organisation (EN71 ?) or is that not necessary as I won't be selling on a huge scale.

    Help, I don't want to go the next step without having all my facts in front of me.
    Would Trading Standards or Business Link be able to help me ?

    Many thanks

  • #2
    I think my first port of call would be to trading standards - they will be able to offer advice in your particular case. I have no idea myself of what to do but I'm sure they will. If when you find out it would be great if you can post the info here for others.
    Good luck with it all!
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    My blog of cute stuff


    • #3
      I am talking off the top of my head and trading standards will probably advise you on the correct route. However you said that they're not intended to be toys therefore you could consider attaching a label stating that it is not a toy and not suitable for children under three years of age. It might be an idea to ask Trading Standards if that would be an option.

      Also I think it is irrelevant that you wont be selling on a 'huge scale' if there is a possibility that you will sell them as toys they need to be safe whether you sell 1 or 1001.

      Testing isn't as expensive as you'd think and for piece of mind it might be worth while.

      Lastly perhaps 'notonthehighstreet' can advise on any requirements that are necessary - just a thought.

      Let us know how you get on with Trading Standards.


      • #4
        Thank-you very much. I'll try and get to talk to someone at Trading Standards tomorrow as I want to get up and running in the new year.

        Once I have the accurate advice and information I'll be more than happy to share it with everyone.



        • #5
          How did you get on with Trading Standards Laura ? I hope you are all sorted and up and running now
          UPDATED 11th November


          • #6
            I am still in communication with Trading Standards and I have to say it's been a bit of a nightmare. Actually, I'll rephrase that ..


            I won't go into too much detail with this post as it's late and I'm not feeling too well but I will post something in the next couple of days.

            It'll be quite a chunky posting so be prepared

            Keep an eye out




            • #7
              I hope you are feeling better soon
              UPDATED 11th November



              • #8
                Going through the trading standards website might be very helpful. It is informative as well. You could also sell your products in the internet by opening a website. The area of reach is much, much wider.
                mod edited signature - crafts only please


                • #9
                  Originally posted by ickle pickle View Post
                  I hope you are feeling better soon
                  But why? Really didn't understand
                  Recycled Gifts