Linc Style: Budget business

Written by Dan Featherstone.

There’s something all of us students need, and that’s money. That, of course, isn’t always so easy to accumulate. Working in retail during my three years as a student at the University of Lincoln, I’m aware that it can be difficult and tedious to have to balance both work and studying.

Reworked denim. Photo by Dan Featherstone.
Reworked denim. Photo: Dan Featherstone.













How about earning money in a fun way? It sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? Well, it’s not. Actually, all it takes is an eBay account, a bit of creativity and a good eye for finding a bargain.

I’ve been selling customised clothing and jewellery on eBay for a little while now, and you’d be surprised how much people are willing to pay for your little creations.

First thing’s first – the clothing. Many people aren’t yet aware that there’s a big market for vintage fashion. There are many avid online shoppers that use eBay as a first point of call to find that one particular item, say, for a collection. I’ve experienced people bid 10 times the price on something I’ve originally paid. Not bad, eh?

We’ve all seen the high-street swamped with the 90’s revival recently too. Why not rummage through your wardrobe first – you never know, you might find something that dates back a few years that’s actually back in fashion. The best thing to do is to browse eBay, know what people are after, and try buy that item cheaply on the high-street.

On another note, sports brands are back. Probably not the kind of items your parents purchased you for P.E. from the local supermarket back in the day, but more premium branded labels. Spend a morning looking through Lincoln’s many charity and vintage shops and you’re likely to find a few treasures.

From experience, you’re best to search through the big boxes and bags of clothing in these stores. I’ve found many designer garments at the bottom of these that appear on the surface to have nothing valuable in them. So, get searching.

Car boots and markets such as Hemswell Market at the top of Lincoln are a brilliant start. Take a friend and it can turn into a few hours of fun and it feels great to bag a bargain. Even try to haggle, as with clothes it’s a lot more likely that sellers are willing to lower their original price.

Another good place to start is vintage and antique fairs, Judy’s Vintage is one right on your very doorstep, held annually at The Engine Shed. Make sure you don’t miss out and check online for when this takes place.

Once you have your items, get customising. Of course, this depends on what you’re trying to sell. Make sure you’re not ruining a garment. Get fashion conscious by keeping up to date on the latest trends by looking around stores and online to give you a good idea on how you can alter the item.

As soon as you’ve completed customising, it’s time to get selling. The key to eBay is ensuring you’ve correctly described the item. Key words including the brand name will help attract potential buyers to your page.

Be as informative in the description as possible and take clear pictures. Also, keep an eye out for free listing days on eBay, that way there’s no loss if your item does not sell.

Always ensure you answer any question, as that encourages good feedback too, which might make people return to your page. Once you get going it’s addictive. Give it a try, who knew making money could be so fun?

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