The embroidery business is a very eye-focused one. That is to say, embroidery is all about looks—visuals, visuals, visuals. Your customers want to see that your products look great. After all, that’s the service they are buying from you. If you have a website or online store, your photographs need to be high-quality, nearly professional photos. The products should be shown close up, far away, and from multiple angles. But if you want to go a step further in customer satisfaction, you might consider making a YouTube video for your embroidery business. A YouTube video lets your customers see your product up and personal. If you include your own voice narrating the video, for example, explaining the product and showcasing it. Your voice adds a personal touch to the video, too.

So how to make a YouTube video for your Avancé embroidery business? First of all, you’ll need a camera. If you have an iPhone or other top-notch smart-phone, you can record right off your phone. Alternatively, you can use your computer’s camera. Just make sure that the quality of picture is extremely sharp. Grainy, blurry footage is just going to discredit your business, not add to it. Make sure you set up shop in a well-lit area, either lit by natural light or powerful lights set up in the right formation. You can read up on how to set up artificial lighting online. It’s important to angle your lights against the wall or other objects in order to place shadows in their proper places and focus attention on the object. Next, take two pieces of blank white paper and place one underneath your embroidery piece and one behind it. This will create a very clean, “endless space” effect for your piece, and makes it look very clear and very professional.

If you’ll be handling your embroidered pieces with your hands in the video, you should prepare ahead of time. Either wear unimposing gloves (for example, simple satin gloves in white or grey—not tough-looking leather gloves) or make sure your hands and nails are well-groomed. Nothing in the video should distract from the object, it should only complement it. If you want to introduce yourself in the video and have the camera feature your full person, the same applies. Appear pleasant, neat, and well-groomed. The great thing about your Avance business is that video will work wonders in promoting your beautiful pieces!

If you are going to be speaking in the video, prepare your narration ahead of time. Write out what you’re going to say and memorize it. Keep it short, mind you! Nobody likes rambling videos—remember, the customer is watching your video to learn more about your product, not about you. If you’ll be appearing in the video, don’t let the camera see you reading off of a paper. As the owner of your business, you should know your product so well that you can speak about it freely. Reading off of a paper seems forced and contrived. Better to let your speech sound more free-flowing, even if you have to make the occasional pause or “um”.

Create a separate YouTube account especially for your business. Link to this YouTube page on all your social media accounts, and on your website. People are unlikely to find your YouTube videos directly through YouTube. Especially if you’re just starting out on YouTube, you’re unlikely to have many video views or YouTube page subscribers.

Check out more YouTube video tips here:

Do you have a passion for fashion? If you spend hours of your time browsing through fashion websites like LookBook, perusing fashion blogs, reading magazines like Vogue, Vanity Fair, or GQ, chances are you have a wealth of fashion knowledge as well.

Maybe you have your own personal blog. Maybe you have even taken to personalizing your clothes—sewing, studding, shortening, patching up things, etc. But, as anyone who loves clothes knows, some of the most jaw-dropping, “I-have-to-have-that!” items can be very, very expensive.

Looking good doesn’t always have to cost a fortune, but it certainly requires its own budget. So why not take your fashion passion to business success? Make money off of your talent, and have fun while doing it! Trying your hand at design and selling clothing isn’t as hard as it sounds.

So how do you start selling things? First, you’ll need a store. Obviously, you won’t have the funds to have a brick-and-mortar store, and you probably won’t for a long time to come. But that’s where the Internet comes in.

You can create an online store on websites like Amazon, eBay, and Etsy. Etsy is an especially effective tool, as it is used by many artisan and craft makers. A good place to start is selling your old clothes or selling vintage clothes. You can scout out your local pawnshops and thrift stores and pick the best items you find there. Coats, jackets, and accessories are a good first bet, since they are more “one-size-fits-all” than items like shirts or pants.

Pick up jewelry, too. Buy silver and gold polisher and clean all the jewelry you buy. Make sure that you dust off and wipe down all the clothes. Take photographs of all the items you buy. Make sure you place the items in a sunny or well-lit area. Quality photographs will make you look more professional.

Another important thing: Be sure to take multiple photographs of the items, from multiple angles. People want to get a good picture of what they’re buying. Make your prices profitable but reasonable—once you get more of a reputation, you can up your prices. Be sure to factor in shipping costs.

Once you get some experience in the field, you can consider starting your very own clothing line. This is what most people dream about and associate with fashion; glamour, runways, beautiful people, fancy parties, meetings with celebrities.

Sure that’s one aspect of the fashion industry (if you’re successful), but don’t let this glamorous image blur your vision. Having your own clothing line is actually a lot of work. While maybe 10% of your time will be spent designing—arguably, the most fun part—the rest of your time will be spent steaming clothes, packaging them, pouring over receipts and accounts, and finding and maintaining clients.

Bottom line is, either way you go, if you want to be successful in the fashion industry, it’s going to require blood, sweat, and tears. You’ll be living and breathing your business 24/7. If you can pour your all into taking your fashion passion to business success, you’re guaranteed a good outcome. Otherwise, get out of the kitchen now before it gets too hot.