sjdvn2

Let’s see those small shops!

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Hi all,

 

I’ve been doing bits and pieces of vinyl cutting on the side for a few years. Decals for friends, logos for my day job, iron ons, boat decals and large car decals.

 

I’m wanting to step it up a bit to help some local businesses and be able to provide services legally, but need to improve my space.

 

I have a 34” cutter, computer setup, small/med sized table, shelving and a clamshell heat press. I’ll be registering an LLC for this as well.

 

Currently, I do my drawing and computer work on my basement office, which my wife has taken over for remote work. I’ve cleaned out my utility room and think I could make a decent small space for decal/light sign making. I’d love to see some of your small shop areas for inspiration.

 

What do you love about your small space? What would you change?

 

 Look forward to hearing back!

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There is already a thread here that people showed their shops,  you will have to find it.  Also, there is only a couple handfuls of forum members that answer questions anymore.  I never went small. I started with large graphics and never looked back.  My average is 20" wide by 8 feet. L. Clear up to 27" w x 16 feet .L.  I prefer making my money fast. Less work, more pay.  Large detailed graphics is my niche'    I work out of a 13' x 14' bedroom,  8 ft table,  30" cutter, old XP laptop. I have been at it for 16 years, online only.  Good luck. 

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Thanks for the input, the forums are definitely quieter nowadays, it’s too bad. I do like the idea of online-only, I had decent sales for the little I was doing and enjoyed it. I was mostly doing shipped decals, little work applied to substrate. Just curious if you focus more on applying to substrate and selling, or just the decals?

 

 Thanks for the feedback, I usually see your name chime in first whenever I have a question, much appreciated!

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I ship everything, worldwide.  nothing installed.   Most cutter buyers don't come here unless they have a problem anymore.  Your welcome.

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In most cases, to turn a hobby into a business you don't need to be LLC.

Generally, the process of setting up a legal and officially-registered retail shop (even from your home) involves the following steps:

1. Register with the Assessment and Taxation Dep't. and get them to verify your "DBA" ('doing business as' = fictitious name) is not already being used by somebody. You can choose to be a Sole Proprietor, rather than a Corporate entity.

Highly advise you first apply for a FEIN. Use that instead of your SS#

2. After you are given the "L" number at the Assessment office, take that over to the Sales and Use Tax people, and they will issue you a CRN identifier (Central Registration Number) that allows you to collect State Sales Taxes on your invoices, and file with the state monthly (most states offer online remittances). This certification is sometimes referred to as SUT and in my state, it's 6%

3. When filing Federal Income Taxes, you will be asked to provide a PBC number (Principal Business Code) and I have been using 541400, Specialized Design Services.

4. In order to claim the utility room portion of your residence as a business deduction on Federal taxes, you'll have to calculate at $5 per square foot, with a maximum of 300 square feet. ($1500) and file using Schedule C.

5. Keep books. I've never done my books with a computer program (like QuickBooks) and instead just used a ledger that I bought at Office Depot. You can also buy invoices from them (and order a personalized ink stamper there, too).

Good luck, let us know how you progress with it.

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Well, it's been a few years since I closed my last retail storefront, and now I've kinda retired (nearing 70, getting too old to be climbing ladders and doing sign installs). However, since requests for simple jobs keep coming (DOT #'s, banners, yard signs, etc.) I maintain the cutting studio in my spare room downstairs, and keep slicin' & dicin' away.

Having a 4'x8' tabletop is just enough to work on.

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I am envious that you have a dedicated working space. I have to put things where they kind of fit, and work around that :blink:  The cutters are in front of my desk, with just enough room for me to load them up. On a good day I have a small table with a self healing mat to tape up. If the project is physically too big to fit on the small table, then I have to clear off the dining room table. I do my best not to take on projects that have longer runs. LOL

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This space used to be a guest bedroom, and we had a bed in there for visitors, but a few years back my son went and got hitched to a lovely lass, and they live with their 3 children in their own place. His old room is now the spare accommodations set-up, and this basement level has become the sign factory.

When the children come over, the first thing they want is grandpa to make them some "stickers" and it's my pleasure. I let them choose an animal from the SignBlazer clipart Library, and select a color from the vinyl rack.

That vinyl rack is actually quite empty, with only red, black, white, blue and a bit of Kelly green, with a few feet of grey and beige leftover from something I had worked on years ago (not too much call for grey and beige when making signs, so those scrap pieces just sit there). This rack is the standard of the industry.

 

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