How We Make $1000’s In Extra Cash Every Year Customizing Shoes

Today I am so pleased to have another guest post for you.

I’ve been so busy prepping our house for sale, selling it and viewing houses to buy that when Helen over at BudgetingIsAChallenge offered to help out, I jumped at the chance.

Helen’s blog is all about budgeting and making extra money through different side hustles.

For this post she took the opportunity to interview a couple of her friends who have created quite a unique way of earning extra money – have a read below.

picture of 2 pairs customized canvas shoes

Many times in your life, you may have thought about starting up a side hustle, to earn extra cash for anything from achieving your savings goals, to retiring early.

Maybe you just want to take the kids on holiday, or you’re tired of debt payments and worrying about money?

What Is A Side Hustle?

Kristen Larsen, over at Believe in a Budget sums this up fantastically:

By definition, a side hustle is not the same thing as a part time job. It’s a side job that you do in your spare time to earn income’.

There are many reasons for starting a side hustle. Here are a couple that motivated me to start that you might say – yeah ok – that would work for me.

  • To pay off debt fast
  • To save up money for a big purchase, rather than relying on credit
  • Pay bills
  • Pay for a holiday

To give you some background I started side hustling, in my 20’s, as a way of paying the bills, when I found myself made redundant.

Now, I am always on the hunt for new ideas and motivation to keep on earning cash, to add to my savings.

Whatever your motivation, as you research your perfect idea for making extra money, it can be helpful to read about real examples.

Come and follow me on Pinterest for more money saving hints and frugal tips!

pinterest image showing canvas shoes

Today, I interview, Alex and Mike, husband and wife co-founders of ‘Vibe Designs’. Mike handles the orders, while Alex’s role is promotion.

Now, they regularly make money online, by customizing shoes and sneakers.

So I’m so excited to be interviewing you guys today! Welcome!

Tell me a bit about why you started this side hustle

It all began because my wife wanted a pair of Harry Potter trainers but couldn’t find any she liked, when she spotted some fabric I decided to up-cycle a pair of her old converse so she would be quiet!

One of her work mates saw them and asked if I could make her a pair of customized shoes out of another variation of the fabric.

From there it just snowballed really with people asking me to do a pair here or there. To deciding that setting up an Etsy Store was the best way to sell custom shoes to a wider audience.

picture of male and female
Alex and Mike from TheVibeDesign

What life or financial goal does your side income help achieve?

If I’m honest, I never started off looking at how to sell custom shoes or thought about the money side of it.

But now it’s a great little pot to put aside as an emergency fund, or to pay for the MOT and car services when they sneak up on us.

Yes, it makes a huge difference, to be ready for those big purchases or financial emergencies.

Have you tried any ways of making extra money in the past?

All sorts, I had a go at making a side income with Story Spoons but just found it was a few friends that were interested and I just didn’t enjoy making them as much.

Yes, I agree, making extra cash has to be enjoyable, so you keep motivated!

Related posts:

The Best Work From Home Jobs When You Need Flexibility

41 Awesome Hobbies That Can Make You Money Right Now

mickey mouse inspired canvas shoes - earn extra cash
Mickey Mouse Inspired Canvas Shoes – TheVibeDesign on Etsy

What is different about this idea?

I actually enjoy every pair I make, especially when it’s a new pair on a theme we have never done before, and the feedback and chats with customers too.

I’m always looking at the best ways to customize shoes and want to make sure that each customer gets shoes that are just right for them, even if that means a little more work for me.

I like to think every pair has a story.

Why do you think your side hustle is so successful?

Because people can get exactly what they want.

If we don’t have something on our Etsy or Facebook we are more than happy to have a chat to work out what people want and work out a way to do it.

We make what we say we will, to my own high standards and keep customers updated.

This has led to a number of repeat sales to some customers where the wife has ordered a pair and then the husband has decided that they want some too!

How many hours do you commit to your side income generation every week?

As many as it takes. Some weeks we don’t have as many orders and I use this time to get ahead or to create new designs.

My wife and I both work full time, and we have a four year old.

Most of our days are filled with getting little man sorted, both off to work, picking him up, time with him, bed time/bath time/ story time.

Once he is in bed we can then sit down, but often both of us get to work on recent orders.

It does mean some late nights, but now that my wife has learned to help, it makes a huge difference!

How do you manage your side hustle around your work?

As I said before mostly by organizing our time, but I do also make the turn around of products clear when they are ordered.

When we are either very busy with orders or other commitments, we update the current turnaround time, so people are clear, when they will receive their items.

When we have time to, we like to get ahead and get orders out ahead of the turnaround time.

How do you promote yourself to your audience?

At present, we promote through Facebook advertising, word of mouth, people tagging us.

We are also looking at how to sell our custom shoes via Instagram and Pinterest – all these are coming soon and we are super-excited!

gryffindor inspired canvas shoes pair - earn extra cash
Gryffindor Inspired HP Trainers – TheVibeDesign on Etsy

In no more than 10 words, tell me what you want to achieve with your online side hustle.

Steady orders to make this my full time job. (Managed it in 9!)

What 3 pieces of advice would you give someone who was thinking of starting up their own side hustle?

  1. Make sure it’s something you enjoy.
  2. Don’t stress, it’s a ‘side hustle’ so if it works brilliant! If it doesn’t find something else that is better.
  3. Teach your wife/ partner / friends to do it with you – many hands make light work!

How much do you charge for custom shoes?

Every pair of customized shoes is different so we charge differently according to how much they cost us to make.

But every pair we sell brings us £14 profit.

Thank you so much Mike and Alex, for taking the time to answer questions on how your side hustle makes money.

Below is a quick summary of how much money you can make customizing shoes if you want start selling and making them yourself.

how much do shoe customizers make?

Profit per pair £14

2 pairs sold    5 pairs sold   10 pairs sold

Weekly     £28                  £70                  £140

Monthly  £112                 £280               £560

Yearly      £1344              £3360             £6720

So as you can see, if you get your pricing correct and factor all your costs in, you could be well on your way to supplementing your main income by at least a £1000 a year!

What could £1000 extra income do for your household?

  • Afford half a family holiday
  • Pay off a debt
  • Repair the car
  • Pay your tax bill
  • Over pay your mortgage
  • Be a lump saved towards the kids’ college fund

Thanks to Alex and Mike for giving us plenty of inspiration today and a practical insight into their side hustle Vibe Designs.

Their Etsy Store is here, if you want to check out their designs.

If you fancy a pair of customized sneakers yourself, use this voucher code BUDGETCHALLENGE and earn 15% discount.

Has this been helpful for you today? Has it given you the inspiration to start earning extra money by developing your own side hustle?

Maybe it has given you confidence that this kind of thing really is achievable, even while holding down a full time job?

Have you any questions for Mike and Alex? Let us know in the comments below.

For help with saving money grab your free copy of the money saving mini bundle today

pinterest image showing canvas shows

Last Updated on 25th September 2021 by Emma

About Emma

I'm here to help you become confident in making the best money decisions for you and your family. Frugal living has changed my life, let me help you change yours.

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