Many people dream of working for themselves or owning their own business. If this has been a dream of yours, it is important that you take the time to prepare for that dream so that it can become a reality. Owning a quilt shop, even if you are passionate about quilting, is hard work.
Take some time to envision your quilt shop. Will you only provide quilting materials and supplies, or will you also offer classes? If you plan to offer classes, will you teach them, or find someone else to handle that? What hours will you be open? Will you have to hire staff right away?
All of these questions should be answered, on paper, before you open your quilt shop. Many people mistakenly believe that a career devoted to their hobby or special interest should not feel like work. Nothing could be further from the truth. Opening any retail store is hard work, and if you are passionate about quilting, you will want the store to succeed for more than financial reasons.
Locating a spot for your quilt shop is an important part of the planning process. Without a particular building in mind, it is hard to plan how much inventory you will need or what type of layout you will have. A shop located in a busy shopping center typically provides more traffic and higher sales, but the price will most likely be higher as well.
A business plan will help you make some of the decisions that need to be made to run a successful business. There are a variety of templates available online that you can download and fill out. You can also buy or borrow from the library books on developing a business plan. A business plan will definitely be necessary if you plan to borrow money from the bank. Even if you don’t need a business plan, it can be a great way to organize your thoughts.
One organization that can help you immensely when opening a quilt shop is SCORE. This organization is made up of retired business professionals who volunteer to give business advice free of charge. They are readily accessible on the Internet, although you may find a volunteer that is willing to meet with you in person. Either way, the service that they provide is priceless.