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i just dont know what to do...sorry rant!!

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  • i just dont know what to do...sorry rant!!

    Everything was going so well, in setting up my new card and stationery business!! But first i loose the name and im having trouble finding another one. Secondally i really need some sound business advise. Im only 21 and im really trying to make a go of this for my son, being a full time mum i had to give up my job and im doing this all for him. But i really need to speak to someone that knows there stuff...Is anyone on here business savy as i just dont know where to start!
    Nikita-Maries Hand-Made Cards and Stationery!/...48997155136152

  • #2
    Get in touch with business link. Free advice. You may do well to get in touch with the princes trust aswell, they may be able to give you a grant but will def give you advice.

    Belovedly facebook group


    • #3
      Agree 100% with alibear business link will be able to give you the advice you need and will often run free 1/2 day courses on marketing, accounts, networking etc (or at least our local one used to).

      And as your only 21 definitely speak to the princes trust, i believe a member from here got a grant to help start up their business and when i used to work with teenagers a few of them got grants to go towards courses or setting up businesses.

      Good luck with it all, you've got a reason to keep motivated and I'm sure you'll make it a success
      Visit Natty Netty for a huge selection of Iris Folding supplies


      • #4
        I think the advice you have been given needs no embelishment definately contact the princes trust some of us on here would to but are unfortunatley past our sell by date for that line of funding.

        Wishing you the very best but definately contacing both Bus link and the princes trust will give you a clear and realistic view, a business paln and something to work with and towards!



        • #5
          I just want to add "Don't give up" it may seem as though things are going against you but you sound like quite an intelligent, sensible person. You'll get over this hurdle - contact what has already bee suggested. I know for a fact business link are really good. Good Luck.


          • #6
            What age is Princes trust for ??? And good luck hope you get things sorted for you and your little boy xx


            • #7
              Yep. Be stuborn. Don't give up. Don't think the world owes you a living. Get up and go. Put yourself forwards. Be proactive. Bounce back. Pick yourself up and dust yourself down and start all over again (hopefully a bit wiser ). Duck and dive.

              But when it all goes pear shaped - stop and have a cup of tea. Take a break. Talk to your friends (us?). Take one problem at a time.

              So...deep breathe, Nikki. Have agood scream. Throw yourdself back in the fray. Onwards and upwards. Off you go (again ).


              • #8
                Originally posted by mumof2littleboys View Post
                What age is Princes trust for ???
                I think it's up to 26 but don't quote me on that one
                Visit Natty Netty for a huge selection of Iris Folding supplies


                • #9
                  Keep going, both the organisations suggested are really good. You might also check to see if you have a local women in business group, there's one here in North Devon, they might be able to offer advice and support as well. I believe Princes Trust is under 25 or 25 and under, something like that anyway. Good luck and remember to come here for virtual shoulders to cry on and to tell us your good news when it happens.


                  • #10
                    Seeing as there are so many threads going on now, I thought it might help to remind you of some of the excellent advice posted on one of your other threads...

                    Just chill a bit Nikki
                    Stop worrying about stuff you don't need to, you have 3 months to tell the tax man... from start of trading
                    Test a few designs on your family and friends
                    If it goes down well then look at a website and fairs or parties, or get your bits into a shop
                    Note your first sale and 3 months after that register with tax man, you can do it online, so it only takes a few minutes
                    I really think you need to take a step back and think about something else for a while as this is going to become such a big problem it will take over your life. As freshfruitsalad has said, you don't need to worry about the taxman - providing you let them know within 3 months of your first sale, you will be fine. If you didn't have your own business to think about and weren't working, what would you do regarding getting financial assistance for you and your son? Think about that. You are still entitled to this and things won't change until your business takes off in a big way so you have time to build slowly and make sure you are doing things properly and not rushing into anything and wasting money you should be spending elsewhere.

                    I chose a fairly generic name for my business (Ali's Craft Studio) which gives me scope to expand into other crafts in the future and launched my website about 8 months after I started trading (I didn't want to go to the expense if no-one wanted to buy what I made!!) To start with, I printed all my own business cards and handouts for fairs which worked out as the cheapest option and I could make changes as often as I liked - I would literally print out small bundles at a time and only print more when I ran out. I only moved to getting them printed when things started picking up and I was spending a lot of time printing and cutting up leaflets rather than creating! Even now, I buy from VistaPrint using their frequent free offers and keep costs way down that way.

                    I think you need to spend some time making up some samples to try out on family, friends, colleagues, whoever - ask for genuine feedback so that you can hone your lines and find out what people actually buy and (if possible but difficult when asking people you know) how much they would spend. Look at all the possibilities for income support whilst you are not working and earning and take the business one step at a time - it is very rare to hear of a small business which takes off straight away and starts making money - usually you make a loss (due to set up costs, etc) in the first year or two, then break even and then (hopefully) make a profit.

                    Don't let the nitty gritty swallow you up - it will send you insane! It is good to be prepared but it really is a lot easier than you think and you could end up putting yourself off completely by blowing it all out of proportion.

                    Happy creating - let us see some of your work when you get the chance & good luck.
                    I'm saying chill, too. Calm down, slow down, put your foot down (or should that be take it off the accelerator?), don't be bullied by businessmen thinking big, do it your way, grow from a solid base, even if it's small.

                    I'm saying this because:
                    the Annie me ( ) started making things for myself, then for family then for friends and only asked for money when it became friends of friends. Then it dawned on me I might be a business but Annie grew slowly and still does everything on the cheap eg I print my own business cards and flyers, I made my own website etc. Annie is making a living and is very happy.
                    The Anna me ( ) thought Annie's booming I'll jump right in and start from where she's at and it's bound to be a goer. How wrong could I have been!?! The world had moved on, the product, although superficially the same has a different 'audience' and motivation for buying.....and in effect, I've had to go back to the begining, have a rethink, and take myself back to basics. What has actually sold? Where? Why? Listen to the customers. Try new crazy ideas one at a time etc.

                    Looking at friends currently in deep poo poo for not doing things by the rule/law book please see registering with the tax man as a good thing.
                    If you keep a track of your expenses you business will probably make a loss to start with.
                    This is where you need to do double think. Most of Annie's expenses would have happened anyway if I'd kept my 'proper job' as it's doing something I was doing for fun. I look at them and smile. They are keeping my tax bill down.
                    I've come a cropper with Anna, as I'm not doing it just for myself. I have ideals of trading fairly, helping other crafters and I share the profits with my daughter in law. Here I frown at the expenses as they are taking money away from these other people as well as me. I'm still having fun but it's tinged with pressure and angst.
                    So I'm trying to say get yourself in an Annie mind set. Business link, the Princes Trust push you into the Anna way of thinking.

                    So your main job is being a single mum on benefits and maybe you have a little buisiness on the side. If the buisness grows the pendulum can swing and you can be a buisness with being a mum on the side but at the moment let the two grow naturally. that's the joy of being self employed. Don't put stress into the equation. keep it fun.
                    Everything that's been said is so true. Don't try to run before you can walk, or you'll find that you end up wasting a lot of time and money. The improtant thing to do is get your product right, then sort out a name. And when yiou think you have a name - and before you get any business cards or stationery ordered! - DO SOME RESEARCH to make sure there are no trademark infringements, competitors locally, or anything else.

                    Starting a business is daunting, but it's also exciting and thrilling and is supposed to be something you do because you feel strongly about your products!! Don't get bogged down by things that seem to be getting in your way; step back and remember why you wanted to do it in the first place. Then look for a solution; if you can't think of one yourself, find someone else who can help!!

                    It may be that starting a business isn't really right for you for whatever reason and if that's the case, don't be scared to admit it. It's certainly not for everyone, and you shouldn't feel pushed or pressured into sticking at something you're not enjoying.

                    But... never be afraid to put the brakes on, step back, and think! And ask for help if you need it - no-one will think the worse of you!!

                    Good luck

                    Last edited by muffin789; 21-09-2010, 12:33 PM.

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                    • #11
                      Thank you all so much for your help. I had a cuppa and have taken a step back. I have added some pictures of my crafts to my facebook friends and emailed friends and family telling them what i am doing! Gonna take it slow i will worry about names later and worry about the tax man 3 months after my first sale the big stuff can come later. I lost sight of the fun i have making these cards so im going to focus on that thank you so much for all your help it is really apprichated!!

                      Nikki xxx
                      Nikita-Maries Hand-Made Cards and Stationery




                      • #12
                        I reckon we all know how easy it is to get carried away, and start tio think everything has to be done RIGHT NOW! But that isn't the case at all . Have a think about starting a timetable, perhaps? Set goals for when you want to have certain thing accomplished by - say, doing market research for a month (getting opinions on your products; seeing what similar things might be out there in your area, and identifying your target market), then spend some time thinking about how you want to sell your items (online, via shops, craft fairs - whatever!) and coming up with your name and doing all the checking to make sure it won't cause you any problems and fits YOU, then give yourself some time to research websites (what sort of thing would suit? A free site you do all the work on? A package like Mr Site? A completely bespoke site?), and so on. You'll amaze yourself with how much you get done if you break it down into smaller chunks and deal with them in a logical order!

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