Bookish T-Shirts and Tank Tops @ Shop.ltlibrarian.com
IT’S FINALLY HERE. After much hard work and waiting my bookish and book lover apparel shop is open! This is very exciting to me as it’s also my first foray into a business and even better it’s a bookish business! But first, how did I get to this point?
What’s on the shirts?
The shirts are currently divided into three categories: Character Sass, Character Names, and Bookish Phrase shirts. The character sass shirts are a way of putting into words the possible frustrations characters experience when they’re trying to go about their business and someone throws a wrench in things.
The character name shirts are self-explanatory, but they contain the last names of MCs from a series. And finally, the bookish phrases shirts are cute slogans and terms so you can go out in the world and advertise how much you love books.
There are currently 17 custom designs on offer with a new design to be added monthly. So if there’s something you want to see, send me an email, or tweet me, send me a message on facebook, or Instagram and you may a new design from that book sooner rather than later.
What kinds of shirts are available?
Currently, there are 100% Jersey T-shirts for both men and women (20 available colours) as well as Triblend Racerback tank tops for women (6 available colours). This being said, there are many shirt options available to print on, so if there’s something people would like to see (e.g. sweatshirts, hoodies, etc.) this could be made available.
Is it only shirts?
Yes, for right now I am only selling shirts. But soon I’ll be adding tote bags because I know how much book lovers like the tote bag option. I’m also thinking about expanding to mugs, pillow cases, and phone cases, but that would come later on. For now, I want to see how the shirt sales go, and I’ll continue to expand from there.
Where can I buy one? Or two? Or you know… lots.
The shirts are available right on the blog at shop.ltlibrarian.com or you can just click on the “Shop @ LT Librarian Apparel” link in the navigation. And you can go there and order as many as you like. Right now. Like… right this minute. Please note that currently I am only shipping to the US and Canada, but hope to expand internationally overtime.
How did you get to this point? Aka the story.
Right, when I started blogging I had the idea in my head to try and make this into something I could do for fun, but also something to potentially supplement my income. I had grand dreams of affiliates links that people would lose their mind to click on and that I would be one of those “How I made $1,000 from a single affiliate link” people. The reality? Not so much. The background of those sorts of posts is that people work for years to build a platform before that sort of craziness begins. And moreover, I find that it’s over advertised how well affiliate links actually do. I was spending so much time on these links and it frankly was annoying me more than anything, so I chopped them out.
Then I thought, well what about these workshops? Using your expertise to create something valuable that people want to purchase. So I did a little writing tips series for NaNoWriMo and offered free worksheets in exchange for signups to my newsletter. How many people did I sign up? 1. Myself. Hahaha. Okay, that sounds really sad and pitiable, but honestly, it’s funnier than anything. But I had a blast creating those long writing tip posts, and learning to make fillable worksheets, and it ultimately kept me on my NaNoWriMo goal because I was so ultra focused. But was it something I could monetize? Hell no. If people didn’t want to even trade their email address for the worksheets, no way in hell were they going to pay money for them. Which I completely understand. I mean, I’m not a superstar writer
And so for awhile I forgot about monetizing. I hankered down on working on my novel and started to make more of an effort to visiting different blogs and building up a Twitter following and actually following people myself. Then I started noticing some of the bloggers I followed creating designs and content over on Society6. I started to look into sites like Society6 and Etsy and through my research learned about print-on-demand services. These are companies that will take your designs, and print and ship your product as orders come in. It’s more financially available to someone starting out because they print as orders come in. Versus going to a local print shop, printing 100x shirts and hoping to God they’ll sell so you can make your money back. So now I had an idea, a print company in mind, and the willingness to put in a bit of money.
And this is where my Shopify Bookish Business comes in. You may wonder why I didn’t use Etsy or Sociey6. I did actually want to use Etsy, but they require you go through an outside manufacturing application to sell via print-on-demand services. If you ever want to start a business like this, you absolutely need to research this application. I didn’t know about it beforehand and wasted time trying to set up an Etsy shop. Now I have 100x business cards and shirt labels directly people to an Etsy shop that now no longer exists. Thankfully, they also have the blog address on them. But it was an early business blunder on my part. Then came Society6. I know that popular book bloggers have had wonderful success on Society6, so I had to check it out. And my difficulty was that I didn’t like the shirts. Just that simple. That and I’m kind of a control freak. You can control the markup for prints on Society6, but not for anything else. Not only that, but everything I sent would be plastered with Society6 stickers. In the end, I went with the pricer Shopify store for 2 reasons: 1) because I’m a control freak and 2) because I’m self-involved. Everything on the LT Librarian Apparel website is about LT Librarian Apparel. I control what goes on there, the site design, any ads, the shopping cart, hell I control the whole dang colour scheme. And when my stuff ships, it ships under my brand. The packing slips say LT Librarian, the shirt labels say LT Librarian, and there’s even an included LT Librarian sticker. This is, by far, the pricier way to go, but it’s also the only way I can create my business the way I want.
Andddd that’s how it goes. In the spirit of transparency and sharing this journey with everyone, I’m hoping to post Financial Reports on how things are going as part of my Month End Round-up.
Do you have a bookish business? Or are thinking about starting one? Let me know!
Is there something you would like to see in the shop? Or a product you’re interested in?