A teenager who spent lockdown practicing embroidery has quit her supermarket job after using social media to promote her tote bag designs, and can now turn over five figures a day.
Maisie Crompton, 19, who lives in Cambridge, explained that she was working one day a week at Waitrose during lockdown and began embroidery as a hobby to stop her from being bored.
She noticed other people were interested in her designs after using TikTok to document her learning process.
Having purchased materials from Amazon with £25 from her grandmother, Maisie debuted her sell-out range of products on Depop and now earns up to £12,000 in sales a day on her own website, offering both personalised bags and her own embroidered designs.
Maisie Crompton, 19, (pictured) who lives in Cambridge, has launched Totes For You after taking up embroidery as a hobby during lockdown
Maisie, who boasts over 176,000 followers on TikTok and almost 7,000 on YouTube, admitted that she hadn’t expected to be able to quit her supermarket job just months after launching Totes For You.
In a YouTube vlog, Maisie said: ‘In the first lockdown I had just finished my A-Levels. I was working in a supermarket, so I was counted as a key worker and I was really bored in my free time. I had an idea to start embroidering.
‘I started a series on TikTok where I basically just shared the journey with everyone and it went down well, better than I expected. I documented the process from getting the idea, creating the ideas to getting the materials to starting the website. Everything.
‘I had no idea how to run a business let alone a successful business. I knew the basics that you should be making more money than you’re spending, and that was about it.’
The teenager claimed studying GCSE business didn’t help, so she focused on doing her own research and creating designs.
She revealed her first TikTok video about her embroidery racked up over 60,000 views within a week.
Maisie said she spent £25 on materials to start her business, including needles, an embroidery hoop, thread and tote bags. Pictured: Maisie’s embroidery on a tote bag
Maisie revealed that she began the business using hand embroidery after her grandmother gave her £25, saying: ‘I bought needles, embroidery hoop, embroidery thread and tote bags for £25 all of Amazon. Obviously since then I’ve changed my suppliers.
‘When I was about 10/11 I was really into sewing, then when I was a teenager I didn’t really do much but I still had the skills to do it.
‘It came quite naturally to me when I started. Also,A I’m a perfectionist, so if I couldn’t do it I was going to work until I could.
‘Each one would take me about one to three hours but I had the time, there was nothing else to do during lockdown.’
Maisie (pictured) said her website began racking up £4,000 a month in sales when it first launched, and she hadn’t earned as much in a year at Waitrose
Maisie said she chose Depop as her first selling platform because there aren’t any initial start up fees.
Racking up five star reviews, she decided to start her own website by asking friends to model her products and bought a second-hand embroidery machine to increase the speed of production.
Maisie said: ‘The day we launched I made 13 sales. I was so happy, I was buzzing. We made around £4,000 in a month, I had never seen money like that come in.
‘To put it into perspective I worked a year at Waitrose and didn’t even make four grand that year. That was sales, not profit but it was crazy to me.’
Maisie (pictured), who is saving to buy a house, admitted it’s been difficult to remain motivated since launching her business
Maise’s website has since expanded its range of products to include sweatshirts for £36, T-shirts for £24 and stationery from £1.40 – in addition to her tote bags which start from £15.
The 19-year-old admitted due to the popularity of her business it’s difficult to do everything that she wants to do including uploading regularly to YouTube.
She said work can be ‘overwhelming’ and revealed that she often has to go outside of her home to find motivation.
Maisie revealed that she’s now saving for a mortgage on her own house, saying: ‘I would rather not rent because I see it as a waste of money.
‘I’m financially stable enough that I can afford to live somewhere nice, but it’s just not money that I really want to spend.’