Time for another painful update! So lately I’ve gotten around to using Pinterest for my actual business of making and selling cell phone cases.
Pinterest is pretty fun and handy for a shop because you can make a board for each section of your shop. In my main phone shop on bloodsucking Etsy I have three sections for my shop so I translated that into 4 boards:
One with everything;
One dedicated iphone/ipod board;
A board just for Galaxy S models;
One set up for the new leather, wallet phone cases.
I also found out it’s very easy to almost get lost and carried away while pinning and not pin what your supposed to!
Here’s the blog page where I’ll be listing videos I watched, tutorials I read and whatever.
Making cell phone cases for phones is pretty fun bu requires some things and a high-tolerance for frustration. There are so many factors that can, and will, go wrong.
With sublimation one of the first hurdles you have to face it supplies, specifically ink. If you try and stick to the “standard” sublimation inks you will make absolutely no profit unless you charge super-high prices. That being said, your prices are too high from the norm and no one will buy from you.
When I first started making cell phone cases I didn’t know better and bought the ink…which came to $84 for a 1 ounce cart for a single color and the typical printer has 3 colors and 1-2 blacks. Mine had the 2 black carts…with tax that came to about $450 for the ink alone. As a sobering thought that was more than my heat-press and printer AND heat-transfer paper combined.
I, foolishly, thought I could get lots and lots of printings but after 44 pages, with only three phone designs on each(you can get up to 5 designs per sheet for the smaller phones) I was out of ink! And a lot of that was wasted ink on trial-and-error getting the settings right. I grudgingly took the cartridges out to replace them when i noticed something odd. They didn’t feel empty and sloshed when shaken.
Confused, I pried the side off the Cyan cartridge to reveal that the ink cartridge was still HALF FULL. All of them were. I had heard rumors that that this company rigged their ink system to cheat customers out of money bt I didn’t believe it, until now. See, the thing is that once the printer reads a cart as empty, it won’t print at all until the ink cart is replaced. To replace it you have to remove it…and, half full or completely full the printer will reject it as used!
So that atrociously expensive $84-an-ounce ink is actually $168-an-ounce since you can only use half of it.
Doing the math I was only going to be making about $3-4 a case and not something you can live on and got really depressed until i did some digging and read in a t-shirt forum that “ink costs are what kill most new heat-pressing businesses” and I could believe that given my current situation. I then found out you need to have an alternate ink system.
I’ll go more into that in a future post