How To Start A Black Owned Clothing Line With Less Than $100 [Ultimate Guide]

Starting a clothing line is the ultimate side hustle!

I was able to start my first clothing line back in 2008. That line earned me $2,000 extra a month when I needed it most. If I can do it during the worst financial crisis of my lifetime and succeed, you can too – especially now! Here are two reasons why:

1. There is an explosion of online tools that didnt exist back then
2. There has always been demand for custom clothing and jewelry. That has not changed in 120,000 years of human history, and wont change any time soon.

If you follow this guide, you can learn from my mistakes and build a profitable Black owned clothing line that runs with very little effort on your part.

Again, I started my first line in the middle of the Great Recession of 2008 – and it made the difference between me eating and starving. 10 years later, and it looks like the economic winds are shifting again. Thats why now is the best time to get started. Dont wait for the rain to start to build your financial shelter.

⚠️ Warning: This is a long guide. I try to cover as much as possible to help you make your project a success. If you dont have time to read now, enter your info below to have this guide emailed to you! When you do, I will send you a step by step mini course that will drip feed the info to you.

Mistakes that could destroy your Black owned clothing line

But while starting a Black owned clothing line is simple, it is far from easy. It took me a lot of trial, error, and wasted money to build my clothing line. I made quite a few stupid mistakes like:

  • Trying to do everything myself
  • Building my store on social media instead of using my own website

Mistake 1: Trying To Make Your First Line By Hand

This is not a guide on how to manufacture your own clothing. Here is why:

  • Manufacturing takes time. This guide is designed to get you in the game as fast as possible.
  • Manufacturing is expensive. This guide helps you get started with $100 or less.
  • When you manufacture, the margin for error is greater than using other methods. If you stick with this guide, you will be able to get your products in customers hands with the exact same quality every single time.

My first attempt at starting a clothing line failed because I spent more time shopping for fabrics, cutting, and sewing than I spent selling and making money.

To avoid making the same mistake that I made, I want you to think of yourself as the CEO and creative director of your clothing line. Your job is not to do manual labor. Instead, as the CEO you are responsible for building systems that run your company. And as the creative director, you are responsible for making sure your vision is carried out the way you want it to be.

But you will leave the manufacturing, shipping, design, and other ‘dirty work’ to other people that you ‘hire’ or other parts of your system.

Once everything is set up, your system will run on its own with little to no involvement on your part. This will set you free to work on your business instead of working in it!

If you need a refresher on what I mean by ‘business systems’ read The 3 Things You MUST Do If You Want To Succeed As A Black Entrepreneur.

Mistake 2: Not Writing Your Plan Down.

When it comes to goals and business plans, if its not written down its not going to happen. Period. There are some schools of thought that discourage business plans as being unnecessary or unrealistic. I cannot disagree more. ALL of the most successful operations on the planet – from small corporations to large countries – plan relentlessly, revisit their plans often, and operate according to plan. Your operation should be no exception.

The good news for you is that you don’t need a full 100 page traditional business plan. Instead, use the 5 page plan that I have included beneath Step 1 below.

Mistake 3: Being Obsessed with Tools.

You might be tempted to pile up “tools” that you think will help you get more done, but doing so is an expensive distraction from doing the real work. You don’t need a new MacBook Pro, business planning software, leather organization binders, iPads, or apps to get organized.

Instead, your money should be invested in graphic designers, fulfillment tools, a website and email autoresponder, and tools that automate your marketing.

At the end of this guide, I give you my full list of tools and a cost breakdown. While you might be tempted to jump to the end, I encourage you to read this guide to learn why those tools are necessary.

Mistake 4: Trying to do everything yourself.

Every great entrepreneur knows this #1 rule of business: NEVER try to do everything yourself!

Building a website looks easy. Using photoshop to create your designs looks easy. Creating nice packaging to ship your orders looks easy. Setting up payment processors looks easy.

Its not.

I know so many Black entrepreneurs who have been building their website for years that its not even funny anymore.

I also know many entrepreneurs who think their self-made logo looks great…

…And it looks like trash.

Here is the point: You can spend a full year trying to learn how to build a website and still not get it right. You can spend hours on your self made logo and end up with trash.

There are people out there who can build your site, design your logo, and ship your orders for you. And they can do it better than you. These are professionals who spent years learning their craft, and they do it well.

You can hire these people for a small fee (I will show you how later), and have great looking websites or designs in a few hours. Or you can try to do it yourself and maybe – maybe – launch in a year.

The choice should be clear. Hire cheap professionals to do what they are trained to do while you focus on moving units.

The Step By Step Guide To Starting A Black Owned Clothing Line

Now that you know what not to do, here is my full formula for starting and launching a Black clothing line. If you follow this guide to the letter, you can have a Black owned clothing line up and running in 2 days for less than $100.

Click Next Below To See The Next Step!

Written by Asad Malik

Asad is the Executive Officer of The Pan-African Alliance, and the Founder of United Black America.

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Ashley
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Ashley

Peace! This article was well written and very informative. Thank you for taking the time to uplift the people with needed info!

I’m looking to start a unique, custom textile / apparel line that will NOT include T-shirt’s. So in my case, manufacturing is a vital initial component to my business. Do you have any resources to share to find (black) manufactures?

Julien
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Julien

Well written article!
Can you please send me a business template and all materials you may think might help in starting an african POD business
Thank you ever so much

Darias Jones
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Darias Jones

can you send Business template please really enjoyed post!

Devon Holley
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Devon Holley

This was amazing. This article work, every single detail brought my website to life. I would recommend this article to any person looking to get a better understanding about supply and demand while also looking to get their start. I was able to develop my website within a week. Thank you so much.

Krystal
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Krystal

Can you send me steps please

Crystal
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Crystal

hi, thank you for this article! i am new to this and i just launched my website with godaddy. They have web hosting – go central. I wanted to know if i could use GoCentral instead of Bluehost? They did not offer a monthly option, Go daddy – Go Central may be a more affordable option. They seem to be similar except for the wordpress offer. Thanks

carla rushing
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carla rushing

Hello, Can you send me the business plan template that you used.

Aggo Cedde
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Aggo Cedde

When you create the Shopify store do you actually “create” and add images and such to the Shopify store? Or do all that to your wordpress site? So you have 2 stores? Let me know please.

Phyllis
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Phyllis

Thank you for all the advise

Pennie Bailey
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Pennie Bailey

What about finding Manufacturing companies to make your clothing, that offer glitter. I would like to work with Black owned if possible.