Getting Started in the Rhinestone T-Shirt Business
First of all, let’s start with a few encouraging facts about starting your own rhinestone T-shirt business.
- As you can see from our ROI article, the profit margins on custom rhinestone t-shirts are excellent.
- You can easily get into the custom t shirt business for under $20K in hardware and software, which is probably less than the car you’re driving.
- The entire business can be operated from one small room.
- There’s a real track record of success in the wholesale rhinestone transfer business and the retail rhinestone t-shirt shop. The CAMS Automatic Rhinestone Setting Machine is the most upgraded apparel decorating system ColDesi sells, and many of our existing customers buy TWO or more… That’s a sign of success.
The components you'll need for a wholesale rhinestone transfer business, retail rhinestone decal or custom t-shirt shop.
• One Rhinestone Machine
The heart of your business, or at least the mechanical heart, will be your rhinestone transfer machine. Once you have an idea of the market you’d like to serve, and the budget you have to work with, you can choose the best rhinestone machine for you.
Some of the most basic questions you’ll need to answer are:
What is the best rhinestone machine for my application? If your focus is on simple designs and rhinestone decals, the CAMS 1V-2P may be fine. Or you may need the commercial wholesale rhinestone transfer machine, the CAMS 4H-3P.
The CAMS 1V-2P sells for about $15K, or leases for $350/month, but can be more or less depending on your options.
• 1 or 2 Heat Press Machines
A heat press is essential for any apparel decorating business and you are sure to find many uses for it. With a good, industrial heat press you can do rhinestone transfers, rhinestone decals, t-shirt transfers, and even embroidered patches if that’s already part of your business.
We normally recommend the GeoKnight DK20 Automatic Heat Press. This commercial clam-shell unit has a timer and an automatic pop up to make sure you don’t over press your rhinestone transfers, is made in the USA and has a great warranty. This heat press sells for $1345.00.
You should consider getting 2 heat presses if you expect do have a high volume business. It really speeds up production time!
• Rhinestone Software
We include Sierra Hotfix Era Rhinestone Transfer Design software with every CAMS Automatic Rhinestone Machine. Not only does it make creating stunning rhinestone designs easier than ever before, you can add drivers that will run one of our new ProSpangle spangle transfer machines, a bling machine alternative to rhinestones, but will also run a plotter.
You can even upgrade your Hotfix Era software to Design Era and run an embroidery machine from the same application!