Do your make your clothes shopping habits earn you money or save you some money? As an example, do you buy sale items, low priced “fast fashion” and cheaper BOGO shoe offers? If so, you might actually be losing out over the long run. Why? It has to do with issues like the “cost per wear” and the overall value of any single garment. It also has to do with the need to constantly update your wardrobe to replace items that wear too fast due to their lower quality materials and manufacturing.
Is there any other way to make your shopping habits more profitable than buying quality goods? Yes! In this article, we’ll look at ways to earn money from clothing, and how to make the most of any items you purchase. Let’s first look at one of the simplest ways modern people are able to earn money from fashion – sensible and targeted shopping.
The Tiny Expensive Wardrobe
If you are a regular visitor to Pinterest or Instagram, you probably know all about the trend in capsule wardrobes. It’s a fantastic idea in which you narrow down your collection of clothing, accessories and shoes to the most minimal amount while still being very stylish and true to your own tastes and fashion statement.
It sounds complex, and for many it is. This is because it asks you to be incredibly rigid about clothing purchases, do regular assessments of what you do or do not wear or use and ruthless about purging items you haven’t worn for a while. Most people who succeed have only a handful of garments for each season (averaging between 30 and 40), but these are often high quality items that will last for many years. They typically spend quite a bit on each item, but the “cost per wear” ends up being very low.
For example, one woman has owned a pair of very high priced designer jeans for seven years. She thinks she has worn them about twice a week during that entire time, meaning she has paid around two pennies per wear, and the pants are still looking great, wearing well and expected to last many more years.
That is definitely one way to make your clothes shopping habits earn you some money through savings alone. But, if you also become a successful blogger focusing on capsule wardrobes, you can find yourself able to earn money from clothing via blogs, Pinterest boards, Instagram followers, and of course, affiliate marketing.
In fact, I strongly urge anyone eager to earn money from fashion to become a blogger and to publish all kinds of content about it. Make videos, podcasts, blogs and Pinterest boards about your particular fashion interests or niches. Build a social media following, network with other fashionistas or experts and soon you will be able to earn money from clothing via these spaces.
Affiliate Marketing Can Help You to Earn Money from Clothing
How? As I said – affiliate marketing.
You can partner up with companies that want to use your influence in the world of capsule wardrobes or fashion to promote their goods or services. They give you a special, unique ID or affiliate link. You use it when writing blogs or making content. When a reader clicks it, and makes a purchase, you get financially compensated by the affiliate company. Some of the simplest and most effective to work with include like Amazon, Avangate, ClickBank, Commission Junction, aka CJ Affiliate, eBay, Rakuten, and Shareasale.
With affiliate partnerships, you can publish content focusing on fashion, and use their links to sell everything from digital material to actual goods.
Think about it. Your writings can touch on topics relevant to fashion, capsule wardrobes and clothing of all kinds, without making any pushy sales. For instance, you might write about a closet organization project and use affiliate links to promote the tools, closet storage containers and other items you used in the project. You might talk about repairing garments, keeping them fresh through seasonal storage, transforming pieces with dyes or accessories, and even accessorizing itself and at all times you can earn money from clothing affiliates.
Naturally, no one just makes the leap and is suddenly earning income from fashion by becoming a top-tier affiliate marketing publisher. You have to start small and build an audience. A good “order of events” might include starting an Instagram account in which you post good photos of your best looks (whether it is you modeling your capsule wardrobe or a client’s different styles). You might also want to develop your Facebook page alongside the Instagram.
At the same time, create a website or blog that offers text to go with the photos. It is here that you can use those affiliate links and begin to earn income by discussing fashion, offering fashion tips or even promoting services. You can even partner up your content with Pinterest boards that you can also design around affiliate marketing efforts. A board for your spring looks and another for organizing the wardrobe, for example, could allow you to insert links from your Amazon affiliate account or other companies.
Maybe you are more of a hands-on person and want to earn money from fashion by styling the looks of others? That too is a good opportunity, and one of the different virtual stylish jobs could be just the thing for you.
Earning Income from Fashion as a Virtual Stylist
Whether you want to work as a virtual stylist or remote stylist, the work is usually the same and involves you helping others to improve their wardrobe, look and overall style via your online business or service. You can set up independently, making a name for yourself with blogs, social media comments, Pinterest boards and videos, but you can also begin via sites that currently offer work to virtual stylists. These include:
All of them allow you to work directly with customers. You learn about their personality, current fashion preferences, their body type and their budget. You setup the schedule that works best for you, and then begin helping others while also earning money from fashion. Both sites might offer you a wonderful way to transition from your current job and into one that emphasizes fashion, but could also be a good way to earn income as you build your website and reputation as an online style influencer and expert.
Remember, once your business is up and running and you have an ongoing array of new clients, your site can earn you passive income. Again, it has to do with affiliate marketing, but also because companies like Google or YouTube are often eager to sell ad space on your heavily trafficked pages.
So, it can pay to work part-time as a virtual stylist, master the industry and start to build your own site with all kinds of quality content and affiliate marketing options. Sponsorships and affiliate programs would allow you to introduce and recommend specific brands of clothing, shoes and accessories to clients in return for financial compensation and is a model used by many famous fashion and beauty influencers.
And as someone who is regularly commenting or publishing about style, fashion and other similar topics, yet another way you can start to earn money from clothing is by selling it online, too. We don’t mean starting your own line of clothing (though, that could be a great goal), but by reselling garments, accessories and shoes.
Make Income from Fashion and Clothing Sales
Easily one of the most versatile niches to tap into where online sales or reselling is concerned, clothing and fashion can work for you in many ways. You might become someone who visits local charity shops, thrift stores, consignment shops and any sort of yard or garage sale to accumulate inventory to sell online. Websites like eBay and Etsy are natural choices, but don’t ignore the fashion-focused sites like:
- Material World – Do you shop at Bloomingdale’s? If so, you will want to earn your shopping trips by selling through this site. They work like other online consignment stores but pay in Bloomingdales credits. They also return any rejected items free of charge.
- Poshmark – More like a consignment shop, you photograph, list and price items. If it sells, the site keeps a commission. The buyer pays for shipping and once it is received and confirmed, you are paid.
- Refashioner – This site is similar to Material World in which you get credit in their store for anything you sell. However, this site loves designer, vintage and unique items and would be a great place for someone who has an eye for curated wardrobes and unique stylings.
- The RealReal – Emphasizing luxury, you can only submit items to sell that are from a list of premium brands and designers. The commission here is huge, though, and they keep around 45% of the price for anything less than $120 and around 30% for most other sales. You do not get to set the pricing, and bulk sellers are treated to in-home pickup by one of the site’s representatives.
- ThredUp – They emphasize buying and selling clothing, shoes and accessories. The way it works is simple, they send you a postage-paid mailer (a giant bag, really) and you send in the pieces. They let you know what you will get for your designer brands and defect-free garments. They don’t do vintage but do emphasize hot designers and brands. If you agree, they deposit your earnings into a PayPal account or a pre-paid Visa card account.
- Tradesy – Similar to Poshmark, they take a lot less of the earnings. The site has a large amount of wedding-oriented clothing, but is also a good spot for anyone with more formal pieces to sell.
All of the sites work a bit differently and have unique terms. Some take hefty commissions, some are a lot more lenient and some work like online auction sites with you managing the listings and so on. You don’t have to limit yourself to just one and can start to cultivate relationships with several in order to make the most from your work in fashion and accessories. Some have segments for men, kids, maternity and formal while others are limited to women’s fashions alone.
Some also have referral programs which is great if you are working to earn money from clothing and interact with an audience of clients and/or readers.
Lastly, if you are someone who just loves to look at the latest fashions and maybe do a bit of writing about the items, you might want to consider a work from home gig as a catalog or copy writer. As one fashion expert said, “consider working as a catalog copywriter in the fashion industry. Catalog writers use persuasive and descriptive words to generate leads, drive traffic to websites, and to get consumers to buy!”
Doing this could be the ideal way to start learning how to create the kind of PR-oriented, and marketing heavy language ideal for success as a blogger and affiliate marketer. Don’t look at your ways of earning income in fashion as individual or compartmentalized opportunities. They can all overlap and allow you to submerge yourself in the world of fashion, accessories, shoes and more.
Start with a niche and start with something you know is easy for you to manage. Maybe you can begin by purging your own closet, making that capsule wardrobe, blogging about it and documenting the process online via an Instagram account. Share this with family, friends and others. Then sell the items you no longer use or want and share the details about that process. By the time you are starting to build a better wardrobe and understand how blogging and affiliate marketing work, you will have enough of an audience to consider offering your services as a stylist or a copywriter. In time, you’ll see that you can earn your entire living from clothing and your shopping habits can also pay the bills.