How to Start a Small Fashion Business

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Fashion is a popular style, especially in clothing, accessories, hairstyles, makeup, footwear, and lifestyle. The fashion industry is highly competitive all over the globe, but full of many business segments. You can choose to deal with children’s wear, men’s wear, footwear, luxury goods, bridal wear, or women wear. Fashion entrepreneurs need to be creative, flexible, and always keep in touch with the trend to stay on top of the business. Your fashion business’s size depends on your startup capital and the range of customers you intend to serve.

Things to Know When Starting a Fashion Business

Not everyone wanting to start a small fashion business is a professional designer. Others want to turn their passion into reality. Whether you are a professional designer or not, here is what you need to know when starting a fashion business.


Every entrepreneur starting a business must identify his target market. It is essential to know their age, gender, style preference, and how often they shop. This information will help you make better decisions on choosing a fashion niche, developing your brand identity, drafting a business plan, and creating a marketing strategy.

Business Structure

Deciding your business structure is among the first things you need to consider when starting a fashion business. You can run the industry as a sole proprietorship, a Limited Liability Company, or a partnership. You will then need to register your business and obtain the necessary licenses and permits.

Startup Costs

A fashion business does not need to be on a large scale to succeed. The size of the business dictates the amount of startup capital you will need. It is essential to consider the costs of supplies, store rent, electricity bills, employee salary (if necessary), among other costs. After creating a budget, you must know how you will raise funds to meet your costs.

Marketing and Sales Plan

Being a competitive industry, you must have a solid marketing strategy to make your products known to the public. For a small fashion business, you can employ a simple marketing strategy such as distributing brochures, word of mouth and social media.

Profitable Small Fashion Business Ideas

Fashion businesses do not have to be on a large scale to make profits. Many excellent small fashion business opportunities can make you good returns.

Start a Shoe Store

The shore market is thriving across the globe and starting a small shoe store can be an excellent idea since no dressing is complete without shoes on. You can choose a cheaper shoe supplier or sell stylish second-hand shoes. Knowing your target market and their needs will determine the type and quality of shoes you will sell.

Start a Clothing Line

Clothing lines are among the most prominent businesses in the fashion industry. Normally, clothing lines require huge startup capital, but you can choose to start a small clothing line and deal in vintage clothes. Your clothing line can deal with baby clothes, women’s designer apparel, bridal gowns, swimwear, among others.  However, it is essential to choose a specific niche to concentrate on.

Start a Belt Business

There is a large market for belts since both the male and female gender need belts. Belts can be worn on pants, shorts, gowns and skirts. You can decide to sell belts produced from leather, fabric, rubber, beads, or wires.

Jewelry  Business

The jewelry niche is highly lucrative since women will always purchase jewelries.  It is possible to start this business on a small scale. Depending on your budget, you can start sell jewelry made from copper wire, plastic, beads, and good plating metals.

Open a Perfume Store

People love to smell nice, and therefore, opening a perfume store can be a great idea. You can retail different brands of perfumes in your store to cater to different tastes. You only need to secure a strategic location with high traffic. Otherwise, a perfume store is easy to start and manage.

Retailing of Underwear

Underwear retailing is easy to start and can be highly profitable since a wardrobe can never be complete without underwear. People who love fashion ensure that their underwear is from popular fashion brands. You can choose a cheaper supplier to start a small underwear business.

How to Start a Fashion Business from Home

Starting a fashion business from home is one of the best decisions you can make. Working from home is convenient since you won’t have to pay store rent; you will work at your own time.

Get a Work Space

It is good to have your own working space if you are working from home. Get a place where you can have some privacy when working as it will help you focus on your work. If you cannot get a place where you can close a door for maximum privacy, you will need to be highly disciplined to get your work done.

Set a Schedule

Working from home offers a large degree of flexibility and freedom. If you do not manage your time well, prepare for failure. It is essential to have a basic schedule that will help you organize your day. Allocate time for every activity you intend to do and you are sure to be productive.

Take Breaks

Just because you are working for yourself does not mean you shouldn’t have breaks in between tasks. It is healthy to get up and stretch a bit after hours of endless working. This will help your brain relax and be ready for the next task.

Break the Rules  from Time to Time

Flexibility is important for productivity. Working in the same environment and doing the same things repeatedly can be boring. Being your own boss, you can change your working environment once in a while as it boosts your creativity.

Find a Wholesaler

If you are running your fashion business from home, it is essential to find a wholesaler or a manufacturer who will help you with the apparel supply. Alternatively, you can find an existing fashion business in your niche of interest that will help you with insider contacts. Different manufacturers have different prices. As such, you will need to find a manufacturer who will fit your budget.

Fashion Businesses You Can Start From Home

Become a Fashion Blogger

Fashion blogging is increasingly becoming a popular profession. To get started, have a computer, an internet connection, design your blog, write catchy and interesting content, and update your content regularly. You also don’t have to own a fashion blog, you can decide to work for existing blogs for pay.

Linda Ikeji is the wealthiest fashion blogger in Nigeria. As of 2019, she was worth approximately $40 million dollars (₦14.5 billion).

Become a Fashion Business Consultant

You can become a fashion business consultant from the comfort of home. All you need is the experience or professional training in fashion and you can start offering business insights, and assist fashion entrepreneurs to adjust their strategies.

Start a Handbag and Purse Selling Business

There is a huge demand for handbags and almost every female owns at least one handbag. You can choose your favorite designer, make orders depending on what your customers need, and start selling from home.

Start a Cosmetics Business

With the increasing demand for beauty products, starting a small cosmetics business from home can be highly profitable. You can sell skincare products, hair products, perfumes, facial products, among others.

How to Start a Fashion Business Online

Most businesses are moving from physical stores to online shops. Online businesses are convenient if you have little capital startup capital since you will not have to pay store rent, etc. After considering all aspects of starting a small fashion business, you might want to take your business online. Here are some critical things to consider.

Exceptional Product

Following intensive research of the fashion industry, it is without a doubt that you have decided to sell an exceptional product, one that will meet your customers’ needs. The competition is high since many retailers are selling online and you will need to set fair prices for your products.

Visual Impact

Your website’s visual content should have enough impact to attract and convince potential buyers to buy from you. Your campaign images should be of high quality and engaging.

Product Presentation

With online businesses, buyers have no one to ask questions regarding the products they want to purchase. It is up to you to ensure that your images are well displayed without distractions around them. It is best to invest in professional photography.

Product Marketing

If you want to drive sales, let people know about your website and your products. You can use social media platforms for marketing your business. Consistency is essential in social media marketing since it helps to reinforce your brand reputation.


The fashion business keeps growing as there are many opportunities to try out. However, it is essential to start small and see how your business is going before you decide to scale up. Stick to your business plan and watch your small fashion business skyrocket.


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