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Starting up a Home-based Embroidery Business

Expert: Julie King

Kirk asked:

I am interested in starting up a home based embroidery business. Where can I find a list of blank clothing manufacturers/suppliers/wholesalers etc. I want to stay Canadian if at all possible. Also in the list I need to know where one can purchase hats/tote bags/garment bags/linens etc., also for embroidering. Thank you for any help you can give. I live in Eastern Canada.

Julie King answered:

Here's a quick reply that should help you get started.

The Internet is a great starting point for searches like these. I like for this, as it does a good job of listing both Canadian and International sites. Try starting with simple keyword searches such as clothing manufacturers, and limiting your search to Canadian sites.

Once you've done your initial research, the membership directories of industry associations are often great resources. For example, while it costs a bit of money, this CD-Rom looks very useful:

They also have an online database, which is searchable - and free!:

These two starting points should be enough to get you started; additional keyword searches in the search engines should help you find other organizations as well. As another option, consider talking to business owners in other areas, who won't see you as a competitor; there's always a chance that they'd be willing to help.

About the author

Julie King is the co-founder and managing editor of CanadaOne, Canada's first small business portal.

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