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#1 Thing NOT to Do as a Silhouette CAMEO Beginner

One of the biggest mistakes Silhouette beginners make is to rush into taking orders or requests from friends and family.

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It's almost a guarantee as soon as you get a Silhouette CAMEO and people realize you can make a  custom shirt or a vinyl decal they will ask you to make something for them. And you're going to want to say YES to all.the.things. Don't.


When you are making things for other people - whether it's a paid order or not - there's an added level of stress and that's just when things always seem to go wrong.

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Not only are you, as a beginner still getting familiar with your machine and the software, but you don't have a real sense of how much time or materials it will take you to complete the project. That means it's nearly impossible to accurately price your time and work.

Take it from me - and thousands of other one-time beginners who didn't take this advice and ended up spending 8 hours on a single shirt only to charge $10 for it - and that includes the design you used for which you may or may not have had the right license to.  There's no worse way to get started...

I'm not trying to scare you, I'm just trying to warn you so you don't fall into the trap of #1 mistake Silhouette beginners make. 

Don't worry that you're turning down an order - at this point that's what you should be doing.  More will come your way very soon as you start playing and practicing. You'll be vinyling all the things for yourself, your kids and as gifts and that will naturally lead to your sister, neighbors, best friends, and classroom moms asking, "Where did you get that?" Which will lead to you saying "I made it!" Which will lead to "Can you make me one?"

Then since you've already made the item (or something similar) ten times for your kiddos you'll know, and be able to say, "YES, yes I can make that for you. It will be $15." (Because you know it will take you half a sheet of HTV at $3.25 per sheet, require a commercial use design file or font, and take 30 minutes of your time.)

If you're like the majority of crafters who purchase a Silhouette machine with the intention to only use it for personal use, but now find yourself selling items, you likely don't have any experience forming, running and marketing a small business.  That's okay - I didn't either in 2014 when I found myself right where you are: a mom with two young kiddos on the brink of becoming an accidental entrepreneur thanks to my Silhouette CAMEO.

I figured all the business stuff out on my own and realized later that everything I learned about forming a small business, social media and marketing, dealing with customers, shipping, pricing, growing a small business and much more could help lots of other busy crafty mamas.  I wrote it all down in my ebook Cutting a Profit so you don't have to go at it alone. The book also includes 10 printable worksheets to help you with everything from business formation to tax writeoffs to time management and social media scheduling.

Note: This post may contain affiliate links. By clicking on them and purchasing products through my links, I receive a small commission. That's what helps fund Silhouette School so I can keep buying new Silhouette-related products to show you how to get the most out of your machine!

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