Need sewing machine or barter to make money

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Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby Autumn River » Thu Mar 05, 2009 7:03 pm

Okay, I have never posted in this forum, so if I do it wrong, please tell me.. Wish: After being laid off from my job last year, I have wanted to try starting doing upholstery at home. Not big sofas, but more, covers and cushions and repairs for boats, restaurants, cars, ets. I like working in vinyl!I can also do slip covers, and like working with real leather. Obstacle: The walking foot sewing machine I need is well over $1,200.00, and I am financially destroyed by this lay-off Are there any suggestions? If anyone out there had such a critter, even and old style, I could barter with work in return. I also do portraits ( watercolor or oil), make clothing, and jewelry. I could wallpaper, wash windows, or make you a new pair of mocassins by hand. I do Native-American style beadwork, so if you need regalia, and have a leather machine, please contact me! I don't mean to be depressing, am trying to look forward to new venture, I just could use a little help if there is help to be given!I am really in financial trouble here..unemployment running out in a few weeks..Thank you :idea:
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby MyPasswordIsInvalid » Fri Mar 06, 2009 8:15 am

Autumn River wrote:I don't mean to be depressing, am trying to look forward to new venture, I just could use a little help if there is help to be given! I am really in financial trouble here..unemployment running out in a few weeks..Thank you :idea:
You are not depressing at all; you're inspiring. You have spirit. Spirit is good. Are you also looking for a way to make and sell your art and products, or need money to buy this one specific machine? Maybe there are other ways to get what you want and need, Barbara Sher is good at delivering in that way. Are you participating in the Barbara's big idea party on Twitter dot com? Barbara Sher's Twitter Idea Party how-to thread viewtopic.php?f=24&t=22471
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby Unity » Fri Mar 06, 2009 1:52 pm

Do you look on the classified ads under swaps or give away free sections? Sometimes companies list unwanted items they just want taken away if they have gone bankrupt. My son found a photocopier in vgwc and dozens of brand new boxed ink and toners for it on a rubbish tip, sometimes you can happen upon these things. Good luck in your search, hope you find something.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby pattyn » Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:43 pm

Have you checked www.freecycle.org yet? And www.craigslist.org ? My local CraigsList site (philadelphia.craigslist.org) shows many for sale, one of them just $300, including the table. The listing is actually on reading.craigslist.org, which shows up in Philly area searches. If you find one near you, it's possible the owner would barter or accept payment over time.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby pattyn » Fri Mar 06, 2009 4:47 pm

And you might try posting your request on www.businesshelpingbusiness.com, too.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby urbanpioneer » Sat Mar 07, 2009 9:09 am

It sounds like you have some experience at upholstery, but it's hard to tell how much from your post. Have you taken an upholstery class? Have you worked for an upholsterer? You might want to start there. If you feel you have enough experience, a lot of vinyl work is done by car repair and body shops. Go talk to them and pick their brains about where they get their stuff done and how that whole thing works. Then either go to work for the place where they send their stuff or try to get some of that business for yourself. Do one for free and if they like it, you'll get more business. If there is a vinyl apholstery supplier in your town, talk to them and see if they can tell you who buys from them, contact them for work, or leave cards there for people who think they will try it on their own, and then decide it's too hard, so they call you. If you can get some work, try to get a letter from a a few places like this that say they will be sending you a certain amout of work in the next year. If you can get a couple of these commitments in writing, you can take that to a bank and get a loan for the eqipment you need. I work in television, and there was a multimedia company here that we've worked with to produce commercials who really liked the multimedia thing and got one letter from one client saying they would be given $5,000 worth of work from them in the next year. With that one letter in their hand, these two guys were able to get a small business loan and launched a very successful company. Good luck. Let us know how it's going. When times are desperate, you really have no choice but to re-invent yourself and you might as well re-invent yourself into something you really like. I'm actually kind of jealous at your opportunity. We're doing all right, but I'm kind of tired of waiting for the other shoe to drop, if you know what I mean.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby An8el » Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:35 am

one of the easiest things to do is to ask for the favor from someone who has an easy time giving it to you. You may see them as competition, but they probably wouldn't. Someone with a shop who already is set up with the equipment you want to own is probably dying for some more work. If you could go out and get it for them, I'm sure the two of you could scratch each other's back in some say. Plus it would help you understand how that particular work is being affected by the downturn in the economy so you'd know if it would be worth your while to go out on a limb to put the whole scene together for yourself. So don't be afraid to ask people who are in the business by saying something such as, "Who might be interested that you know who does this sort of thing for a living if I wanted to sell for a company in this field on commission?" My best move has always been to call up these people who have listed themselves in the phone book with a question like that. Pretty much every time they say, "You can sell for my company!" Then head out to the marinas and try to rustle up some business. It would be exactly the same way you would be doing it for yourself if you already had the sewing machines & space for all that. To a business owner who already has all that stuff, it's just junk unless they can find some of that work, work work! So go get it! Meanwhile, design some things that you can sell in some way - useful things that you can make on the sewing machine that you already have. Design something functional - Something you invent might catch on. Lots of people are also taking this time to learn things, so classes are crowded; perhaps you are good at teaching? A friend of mine supported herself making baby carriers of her own design that were comfortable and unique for new moms. This sort of need never goes away. Perhaps you could make bike carriers or the insides of strollers; people are trying to save money by using their bikes instead of cars now and they need a way to carry their junk around. maybe you could design, based on a stroller, a design for people to carry their stuff home from the store when they go shopping... Perhaps you could make furniture covers; people are doing makeovers in their living rooms instead of building or adding on at this point in time. This person I know already had the skill of making packs, so she knew where to get all the fasteners, etc. - but she didn't have to have an industrial sewing machine to start out. Later on she ended up getting a high end expensive machine and going into canvas making, boat-covers, etc. But she kept having kids, so couldn't support that sort of thing to start with...and she did OK with that. She's told me since that it was so simple to do she goes back to it whenever she wants a break. The other idea is perhaps there is a product that is provided by that canvas-boat culture that could be re-packaged and turned into something such as a repair material, etc. Just find out how businesses that are already doing that sort of thing are faring before you commit your meager resources to setting yourself up by calling people who do a similar thing and talking to them on the phone. You'll make some new friends and be glad you did; or at least I am whenever I get one of those bright ideas and have no clue what is real about it. Anyway - come to the idea party at Twitter and the one on March 24th; people will hand you some more hair-brained ideas. ;) You can always sort them out for practical application later1
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby urbanpioneer » Mon Mar 09, 2009 7:49 am

This last post gave me a great inspiration, maybe you can use it. How about an insulated, close-able unit for a bike basket or one of those wheeled carts that old ladies carry their groceries home in. If there was an unsulated liner in that where you could put your cold stuff, then fold down the top and close it, you could get your milk and ice cream home on the walk without it getting warm. That same sort of thing for insulated saddle bags for a bike to carry groceries or to fit inside a bike basket. These items could be carried for sale at health food stores and bike shops.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby ideamim » Wed Mar 11, 2009 11:22 pm

Two quick suggestions: 1. Sign up with freecycle.com and post a WANTED ad for an industrial sewing machine. It's quite possible someone has one in their attic that they haven't gotten rid of but will never use. 2. Barter part-time work for an upholsterer for using the machine off-hours? Then you could start advertising your services and save money for a machine of your own. Craig's List is a great place to advertise your upholstery services, in the furniture section. I got used chairs and hired someone to recover them all on CL. I've been asked to recommend the person (which I won't do, she was a nutcase) so I know that a good reupholsterer is hard to find! Good Luck!
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby BarbaraSher » Fri May 22, 2009 8:01 am

MyPasswordIsInvalid wrote:
Autumn River wrote:... Are you participating in the Barbara's big idea party on Twitter dot com? Barbara Sher's Twitter Idea Party how-to thread viewtopic.php?f=24&t=22471
Yes, come on over. The hot day of the week just ended (Thursdays from noon to midnight, EDT) but someone's working on ideas any old time. Best to search for #W/O first, and state your wish and obstacle there so it doesn't get lost in ScrollDownAndDisappear Land) We had a lot of fast, clever fun yesterday. It didn't end at midnight. (Some were there until 2 a.m.). That's at #ideaparty as I'm sure the instructions show. And I am blown away that there are instructions! Going to look at them right now!
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby sgoldie » Mon Jun 01, 2009 10:32 pm

Autum River, I think you could start out with a regular sewing machine and work your way up to an industrial one. There are plenty of things you could make with the former. I know I have a 40yr old heavy duty one that is suitable for anchor material, not that it doesn't work it just weighs a ton. (Too heavy to mail to you) There have to be people around who are trying to get rid of same. Ask everyone you know, post signs in the grocery store.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby sallypz » Wed Jun 03, 2009 8:51 am

Autumn River, Love your name...my dauhghter's name is Autumn. I love to sew, am self taught. I don't know what a walking foot sewing machine is.....is it a treadle machine?? Craig's list, freestyle are good ideas. Get a list of the stores/factories that do the type of work you want to do, call them and ask them if they are willing to sell any of their sewing machines as second hand. After a while and making more money at what you want to do then you can save up for a newer machine. Have you looked into micro-loans?? Remember you will need money for materials and other things too for your business, business cards, flyers, mailers, advertising. There are a few places out there that are willing to give micro-loans out to new businesses--especially for women. Gogle micro-loans maybe you'll come up with something. Start your business off as a real business...give it a name, etc...Then you qualify as a small business for tax purposes..you can write off the cost of all the materials & sewing machines you purchase, as well as office supplies, education in your field etc...Make yourself a mini-business plan (don't be scared by the big business plan formats you see in books---a mini-format will do). Also try the small business asociation for a loan....you may be able to get more than just the money for a sewing machine. Ask your bank about micro-loans--they may not be able to give you such a small business loan--but may know resources that will. Try professional business women's groups in your area--they may also know about micro-loans too---or may be willing to start a program---also they may direct you to a mentor that can help with the how to organize a business end of your new small business venture. Will a reegular treadle machine be able to handle the types of materials you plan to use for a start? Working Old fashioned treadle machines are available on craig'slist too. Janome company puts out a modern treadle sewing machine too--it costs about $250. The only drawback is you need to have a treadle table already for the machine to fit into----and that's an old fashioned object that no-one-----absolutely no-one---(there's asmall business idea for someone out there)---makes any more. I know, I've been searching for a treadle table....eventually will buy one or create my own. Also a good idea, keep some kind of notebook, a spiral notebook will do...of business ideas and brainstorming thoughts...you can also keep a list of your contacts names, addresses, phone numbers in there....such as suppliers, customer prospects etc...etc....etc... just a simple way to organize everything in one place. I know lots of people here have come up with great ideas for products...but...at first keep your focus on just a few things...1, 2 or 3...expand later...after you 'get your feet wet.' Eventually you may also want to get as business tax number....look on line for how...also the SBA...Small Business Association has a web site with lots of information...they may even have info about micro-loans...I don't know...you'll have to look. Good luck and keep us posted. It sounds very exciting. Sending lots of loving thoughts and support your way.
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby BarbaraSher » Wed Jun 03, 2009 9:05 am

sallypz wrote:Autumn River, Also a good idea, keep some kind of notebook, a spiral notebook will do...of business ideas and brainstorming thoughts...you can also keep a list of your contacts names, addresses, phone numbers in there....such as suppliers, customer prospects etc...etc....etc... just a simple way to organize everything in one place. I know lots of people here have come up with great ideas for products...but...at first keep your focus on just a few things...1, 2 or 3...expand later...after you 'get your feet wet.' Eventually you may also want to get as business tax number....look on line for how...also the SBA...Small Business Association has a web site with lots of information...they may even have info about micro-loans...I don't know...you'll have to look.
Great idea, sallypz! Also nice idea for a blog (with photos - which you twitter whenever you want to bring in new business) and an eBook (to teach others how you got started). Personal stories are compulsively readable, and a blog is a way to write everything as you go along so you don't have to Sit Down And Write A Book. Give it the right title and you can set up Paypal and sell 100 or 1000 copies at $19.95 and have some operating cash as well as creating some buzz about your business. You don't need any fancy shopping carts. Just reply to You've Got Cash (isn't that a pretty tune?) by dragging the icon into a reply email. And build your mailing list. (Well, I could go on and on, with fun ideas about teaching a little bit on YouTube to bring interested people to your site, but never mind, I'll stop now.) (Except to suggest that you check out Yahoo! groups and Ning.com to see what your fellow professionals are talking about.)
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby sallypz » Thu Jun 04, 2009 7:03 am

Barbara, Thank you for your feedback. You've given me some interesting ideas. Actually I'm not the computer genius in the family, my Autumn is, I'll have her teach me how to look into doing some of the things you talked about. I was working on starting my own business before Hurricane Charley hit my house in 2004...lost a lot of my paperwork in the hurricane...and life has been so busy since...adopted a mildy developmentally disabled 6 y/o child that didn't speak a word of English, changed residences, changed jobs, sued the contractor that trashed my house after taking the insurance money...now they've 'become insolvent' because of the economy..so the house is still a mess, lost my job, became a grandma, now am moving back up north to share living arrangements, babysitting and expenses with my daughter...I havn't got back to trying to restart my own little business.....but now I'm about ready to try again....just have to come up with an idea of what to do....or multiple things. I have my own little spiral notebook of ideas also a file of ideas. I'm reading your book "I Could do Anything if Only I Knew What it Was"....am only on ch.5..but love the book....I keep saying to myself, "That's me, that's me!"....I've already recommended it to some on-line friends...one has just purchased it along with "Wishcraft" which I read some years ago...have a copy somewhere, I think, & want to pull it out again for a reread. I read all the positive thinking stuff I can get my hands on (was trying to read Vicktor Frankl while hiding in my bedroom closet during the hurricane---LOL!!!---only I would read during a hurricane!!) I think I've done affirmations out the wazoo---but something's always missing---your book seems to have the missing piece(es). Another good book I've just read is by Rabbi Shmuley Boteach (may be spelling that worng)...it's on Fear and facing your fears. He has a unique and very real way to look at fear....workable....and that's what counts. This week I am finishing up painting,redecorating & cleaning the little condo I'm leaving here in the hot flatlands of the Florida Gulf coast, most of my stuff is already up north, next week (Tues) my 10 y/o , dog & I will get into my little car and be on our way up north. I plan to be there by Thurs evening....then will have time on the weekend to start to investigate the things you talked about in your post. Thank you for the ideas...those are always welcome.....will you be speaking/presenting in or near Chicago this summer or fall??? Would love to attend. sallypz (Moxie Me)
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Re: Need sewing machine or barter to make money

Postby sallypz » Fri Jun 05, 2009 6:27 am

Barbara, Just wanted to let you know I couldn't wait to take some kind of action...I joined Ning...What a great site. A wonderful learning tool, resource and network. I'm all for Small Business and Women in Business...I think it may be the key to turn this slumping economy around.....if there's not work out there, well then, make your own!!! I firmly believe that every time one person succeeds in the world then we all succeed. Also did a little post on Squidoo.... I think you're a treasure sallypz (Moxie Me)
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