Top Tips for Opening an Etsy Shop and Growing Your Business

Top Tips for Opening an Etsy Shop and Growing Your Business

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Starting a Personal Business
    • Making Your Business Your Full-Time Job
    • Learning Knitting and Designing
    • Resources for Learning New Techniques and Patterns
    • Overcoming Fears and Taking Risks
    • Things to Know Before Turning Your Hobby into a Business
  3. Running an Etsy Shop
    • Getting Started on Etsy
    • Pricing Your Products
    • Stockpiling vs. Custom Orders
    • Predicting Turnaround Time
    • Advice on Starting an Etsy Shop
  4. Using Social Media for Business
    • Building a Community on Instagram
    • How Social Media has Helped Your Business
    • Time and Effort Put into Social Media Posts
    • Tips for Staying Interesting to Followers
    • Tips for Growing Your Instagram Account
  5. Advancing Knitting Skills and Techniques
    • Tips for Learning New Stitches
    • Favorite Stitch Books
    • How to Learn and Master New Stitches
    • Finding Inspiration for New Stitches
    • Approaching Others for Knitting Questions and Assistance
  6. Sustainable Knitting Business
    • The Sustainability of a Knitting Business
    • Factors for a Sustainable Business
    • Pros and Cons of Running a Knitting Business Full-Time
  7. Designing Knitting Patterns
    • The Process of Designing Knitting Patterns
    • Putting Thoughts and Ideas on Paper
    • Getting the Right Measurements for Patterns
    • Gaining Skills by Following Sweater Designers
    • Overcoming the Fear of Messing Up in the Design Process

Article: Tips for Running a Successful Knitting Business

Running a successful knitting business is about more than just creating beautiful knitted pieces. It requires dedication, skill, and a strong understanding of the market. Whether you're knitting for fun, looking to turn your hobby into a full-time job, or starting an Etsy shop, this article will provide you with valuable tips and insights to help you succeed.

1. Making Your Business Your Full-Time Job

Transitioning from knitting as a hobby to making it your full-time job can be both exciting and challenging. Before taking the leap, it's important to consider the following:


  • Freedom to focus on your passion
  • Potential for higher income
  • Flexibility in setting your own schedule
  • Opportunity for personal and professional growth


  • Uncertainty of stable income
  • Increased responsibility for running a business
  • Need for marketing and self-promotion skills
  • Potential for longer working hours

Despite the challenges, many knitters have successfully turned their hobby into a profitable business. It's essential to have a solid plan, take calculated risks, and be prepared to put in the time and effort required to make it work.

2. Learning Knitting and Designing

To excel in the knitting industry, you need to continually learn and expand your knitting and designing skills. Here are some tips to help you on your learning journey:

Starting out:

  • Begin with the basics: Learn the fundamental knitting techniques, such as knit and purl stitches. There are numerous online resources and tutorials available to help you get started.
  • Practice, practice, practice: Dedicate time to honing your knitting skills. The more you practice, the better you'll become.

Expanding your skills:

  • Explore new techniques: Challenge yourself to learn new knitting techniques, such as cables, lace, or colorwork. YouTube and knitting books are great resources for guided learning.
  • Experiment with patterns: Try different patterns to broaden your understanding of various knitting styles and techniques. Learn from the patterns you follow and adapt them to create your unique designs.
  • Join knitting communities: Engage with other knitters in forums or social media groups. Share your experiences, seek advice, and learn from fellow enthusiasts.
  • Attend workshops and classes: Participate in knitting workshops or take knitting classes to learn from experienced instructors and connect with other knitters in your area.

Remember, learning to knit and design is an ongoing process. Embrace every opportunity to expand your knowledge and skills to create more intricate and beautiful knitted pieces.

3. Starting an Etsy Shop

Setting up an Etsy shop is a popular choice for many knitters looking to sell their creations. Here are some tips to get started:

Getting started:

  • Choose a memorable shop name: Select a name that reflects your knitting style and brand identity.
  • Set up your shop profile: Add a profile picture, write a compelling bio, and showcase your best knitted items.
  • Choose a niche: Identify your unique selling proposition and focus on knitting items that cater to a specific niche or target audience.
  • Take high-quality photos: Invest time in capturing professional-looking photos of your knitted items. Good lighting, clear details, and attractive styling can significantly impact sales.

Pricing your products:

  • Consider your material costs: Calculate the cost of yarn and other materials used in each item. Ensure that your pricing covers these costs.
  • Factor in time and effort: Determine how long it takes to make each item and assign a reasonable hourly rate for your labor. This will help you set appropriate pricing.
  • Research competitor prices: Research other knitters selling similar items to set your prices competitively. Take into account factors such as materials used, quality, and complexity of the design.

Stockpiling vs. custom orders:

  • Find a balance: Decide whether you want to stockpile ready-to-ship items or focus on custom orders. Consider your capacity and time constraints before making a decision.
  • Test the market: Start with a small stock of popular items to gauge customer interest and adjust your inventory accordingly.

Predicting turnaround time:

  • Keep meticulous records: Record the time it takes to complete each item, from knitting to finishing touches. Use this data to estimate the turnaround time accurately.
  • Overestimate time: When providing estimates to customers, add extra time to account for unforeseen circumstances or delays. It's better to exceed expectations and deliver early.

Advice on starting an Etsy shop:

Starting an Etsy shop can be an excellent way to reach a larger audience and sell your knitted creations. However, building a successful shop requires patience, consistency, and a commitment to continually improving your craft. Remember to leverage social media to promote your shop, engage with your customers, and build a loyal following.

In the next section, we'll discuss how to leverage social media for the growth and success of your knitting business.

4. Using Social Media for Business

Social media platforms, particularly Instagram, can be powerful tools for growing your knitting business. Here are some tips to effectively utilize social media for business:

Building a community on Instagram:

  • Consistently interact: Follow and engage with other knitters and designers on Instagram. Like and comment genuinely on their posts, and be a supportive member of the community.
  • Use hashtags strategically: Research popular knitting-related hashtags and incorporate them into your posts to expand your reach and attract relevant followers.
  • Share your story: Use Instagram's story feature to give your followers a behind-the-scenes look at your knitting process, updates on upcoming projects, and insights into your business journey.
  • Collaborate with others: Seek collaboration opportunities with other knitters or brands in the industry. Collaborations can help expand your reach and introduce you to new followers.

How social media has helped your business:

Social media, especially Instagram, has played a significant role in the growth of many knitting businesses. It serves as a platform to showcase your work, connect with a like-minded community, and attract potential customers. By consistently sharing high-quality content and engaging with your audience, you can build brand awareness, gain a loyal following, and drive traffic to your website or Etsy shop.

Time and effort put into social media posts:

Maintaining an active and engaging social media presence requires consistent effort. Spend time planning and curating your posts, taking high-quality photos, writing captivating captions, and interacting with your followers. Utilize scheduling tools to streamline your social media workflow and ensure regular posting.

Tips for staying interesting to followers:

To keep your followers engaged and interested in your content, consider the following tips:

  • Vary your content: Experiment with different types of posts, such as flat lays, modeled items, knitting progress shots, and tutorials.
  • Use storytelling: Share personal anecdotes, stories, or experiences related to your knitting journey. This helps create a personal connection with your audience.
  • Ask questions: Encourage interaction by asking questions in your captions. This prompts your followers to leave comments and engage with your posts.
  • Stay consistent: Consistency is key to maintaining an engaged audience. Stick to a regular posting schedule, so your followers know what to expect from you.

Tips for growing your Instagram account:

Growing your Instagram account takes time and effort. Use the following strategies to expand your reach and attract new followers:

  • Engage with relevant accounts: Like and comment genuinely on posts from other knitters, designers, and knitting enthusiasts. This helps increase your visibility and encourages reciprocal engagement.
  • Utilize hashtags effectively: Use a mix of industry-specific hashtags, niche-specific hashtags, and popular general hashtags to attract a wider audience.
  • Collaborate with others: Seek opportunities for collaborations, such as hosting giveaways, participating in joint projects, or contributing to guest blog posts. Collaboration can expose your brand to new audiences and increase your follower count.

In the next section, we'll delve into tips for advancing your knitting skills and techniques.

5. Advancing Knitting Skills and Techniques

To become a skilled knitter and designer, you need to continuously learn and explore new skills and techniques. Here are some tips for advancing your knitting skills:

Tips for learning new stitches:

  • Use stitch books: Invest in stitch books like the "Harmony Guides 415 Knitting Stitches" to explore a wide variety of stitches and patterns.
  • Online resources: Browse websites like Pinterest, YouTube, and knitting blogs for ideas, tutorials, and inspiration.
  • Join knitting communities: Participate in online forums, social media groups, or local knitting groups to learn from experienced knitters and share your own knowledge.
  • Experiment with patterns: Try knitting different patterns involving new stitches or techniques to expand your skill set.

Favorite stitch books:

One recommended stitch book is the "Harmony Guides 415 Knitting Stitches Vol 2". However, there are many stitch books available, so find one that resonates with you and your knitting style.

How to learn and master new stitches:

Learning and mastering new stitches require practice and patience. Here's an approach to effectively learn new stitches:

  1. Select a stitch: Choose a stitch that interests you or complements your project.
  2. Gather resources: Utilize books, online tutorials, or videos specific to the stitch you want to learn.
  3. Start with small projects: Incorporate the new stitch into a simple project, like a dishcloth or scarf, to practice and gain confidence.
  4. Analyze and evaluate: As you work on the stitch, pay attention to tension, pattern formation, and any challenges you encounter.
  5. Seek guidance if needed: Reach out to knitting communities or experienced knitters for advice or clarification if you're struggling with a particular stitch.
  6. Practice regularly: The more you practice, the more proficient you will become. Dedicate time to repetition and refinement.

Remember, every knitter learns at their own pace, and it's normal to experience difficulties along the way. Embrace the learning process and enjoy the journey of enhancing your knitting skills.

Approaching others for knitting questions and assistance:

When you encounter knitting roadblocks or have specific questions, consider the following approaches:

  • Online communities: Join knitting forums, social media groups, or knitting-specific websites like Ravelry to seek advice from experienced knitters.
  • YouTube tutorials: Search for relevant tutorials on YouTube to find step-by-step instructions for specific techniques or stitches.
  • Knitting blogs: Explore knitting blogs where experienced knitters share tips, tricks, and answer common knitting questions.
  • Personal connections: If you have knitting friends or acquaintances, don't hesitate to reach out to them for advice or assistance.

In the next section, we'll discuss the sustainability of running a knitting business.

6. Sustainable Knitting Business

Running a sustainable knitting business requires careful planning, adaptability, and a focus on long-term growth. Consider the following factors:

Key factors for a sustainable business:

  • Time commitment: Running a knitting business, especially full-time, requires significant time and effort. Be prepared to dedicate long hours to knitting, marketing, shipping, and administrative tasks.
  • Financial considerations: Understand that starting a knitting business may not bring immediate financial success. Be prepared for a period of low income and work towards building a sustainable customer base.
  • Adaptability: Stay updated with market trends, customer demands, and adjust your designs and products accordingly. Flexibility is essential to sustain and grow your business.
  • Building a community: Engage with the knitting community, both online and offline. Developing relationships with customers, fellow knitters, and followers can help create a support system and generate loyal customers.

Pros of running a knitting business full-time:

  • Pursuing your passion: Running a knitting business allows you to work with what you love and enjoy doing every day.
  • Potential for higher income: With dedication and skill, a knitting business can bring financial success.
  • Flexibility and control over your schedule: Being your boss allows you to set your working hours and prioritize tasks based on your preferences.
  • Personal and professional growth: As a business owner, you constantly learn and develop new skills, expand your creativity, and grow as an individual.

Cons of running a knitting business full-time:

  • Uncertain income: Starting a business can be financially challenging, especially in the early stages. You may experience periods of low income or financial instability.
  • Increased responsibility: As the sole proprietor of your knitting business, you bear full responsibility for all administrative, marketing, and operational tasks.
  • Need for marketing and self-promotion skills: Effective marketing is crucial for attracting customers and growing your business. This requires learning and implementing marketing strategies and techniques.
  • Potential for longer working hours: Running your own business often means working longer hours than a standard 9-to-5 job.

Remember, sustainability in a knitting business takes time to develop. Be patient, adaptable, and persistent. Focus on building a solid foundation, nurturing customer relationships, and continually improving your craft.

7. Designing Knitting Patterns

Designing knitting patterns allows you to unleash your creativity and create unique pieces. Here's how to navigate through the design process:

The process of designing knitting patterns:

  1. Start with an idea: Sketch out your design or make notes on the look and feel you want to achieve.
  2. Swatching: Create swatches using different stitches and needle sizes to determine gauge and fabric texture.
  3. Measurements and calculations: Determine the desired measurements of your design and calculate the number of stitches and rows required.
  4. Drafting the pattern: Take detailed notes of each step, including cast-on stitches, stitch patterns, shaping techniques, and finishing instructions.
  5. Testing and revision: Have a group of testers try your pattern and provide feedback for improvements. Revise your pattern based on their feedback.
  6. Formatting the pattern: Create a clear and visually appealing pattern layout with detailed instructions, abbreviations, and any required charts or diagrams.
  7. Finalizing the pattern: Proofread and edit the pattern for accuracy, clarity, and consistency. Include high-quality photographs or illustrations to enhance comprehension.

Putting thoughts and ideas on paper:

When putting your thoughts and ideas onto paper, organization is key. Use notebooks, loose-leaf pages, or digital tools to jot down your design ideas, measurements, stitch patterns, and calculations. Keeping detailed records helps you stay organized and prevents ideas from getting lost.

Getting the right measurements for items:

Accurate measurements are crucial when designing knitting patterns. Gather information from pattern databases, knitting books, or official size charts to determine standard measurements. Take the average of multiple sources to ensure accuracy.

When creating your own patterns, begin with a base size and make adjustments for different sizes by adding or subtracting stitches or rows. Provide clear instructions on how to adapt the pattern to various sizes.

In the final section, we'll discuss the fears and challenges of the design process and offer tips for overcoming them.

8. Overcoming the Fear of Mistakes in the Design Process

Mistakes and setbacks are inevitable when designing knitting patterns. Here's how to overcome the fear of making mistakes:

Embrace the learning process:

Acknowledge that mistakes are a natural part of the design process. Understand that they provide valuable learning opportunities and chances for improvement.

Release perfectionism:

Let go of the need for perfection and accept that imperfections are part of the creative journey. Instead of aiming for perfection, focus on continuous improvement and learning from mistakes.

Seek feedback and support:

Join design communities, knitting groups, or forums to connect with fellow designers who can offer feedback, advice, and support. Collaborate with testers or seek mentorship to gain valuable perspectives on your designs.

Iterate and revise:

View mistakes as opportunities to iterate and refine your designs. Take feedback into consideration and make necessary revisions to improve your patterns.

Celebrate accomplishments:

Acknowledge and celebrate your successes, both big and small. When you overcome challenges or achieve a design breakthrough, take a moment to appreciate the progress you've made.

Remember, every successful designer has experienced setbacks and mistakes along the way. It's through these challenges that you grow, learn, and develop your skills as a designer.


  • Transitioning from a knitting hobby to a full-time business requires planning and dedication.
  • Learning new knitting techniques and patterns through online resources, tutorials, and practice.
  • Setting up an Etsy shop and understanding pricing, inventory, and customer expectations.
  • Leveraging social media, particularly Instagram, to build a community and promote your knitting business.
  • Advancing knitting skills by experimenting with new stitches, joining knitting communities, and attending workshops.
  • The importance of sustainability in a knitting business and its pros and cons.
  • Designing knitting patterns by sketching ideas, swatching, and implementing measurements.
  • Overcoming fears and embracing mistakes as a part of the design process.


Q: How long does it take to become proficient in knitting and designing? A: The time it takes to become proficient varies from person to person. It depends on factors such as dedication, practice, and natural talent. With consistent effort and a love for knitting, you can see improvement and progress within a few months to a year.

Q: Is it necessary to have a degree or formal education in knitting to start a knitting business? A: No, it is not necessary to have a degree or formal education in knitting to start a knitting business. Many successful knitters and designers are self-taught and have learned through practice and online resources. However, continuing to learn and improve your skills is essential for growth and success.

Q: How do you stay motivated and inspired as a knitter and designer? A: Staying motivated and inspired as a knitter and designer can be achieved through various methods. These include regularly setting goals, staying connected with the knitting community, seeking inspiration from other designers and artists, attending workshops or classes, and experimenting with new techniques and patterns. Finding joy in the process and embracing the creativity that knitting offers can help maintain motivation and inspiration.

Are you spending too much time looking for products?
App rating
Trending Product
Trusted Customers

Etsyshop has the world's largest selection of ETSY store to choose from, and each product has a large number of ETSY products, so you can choose ETSY store & product for your Ecommerce and dropshipping business without any hassle.

Browse More Content