So, at the rip old age of 25 I decided to open up a Facebook page and set up my own handmade business. Little old me thought it would be easy, that was until I realised all the legal requirements that were NEEDED!
Are you thinking of joining the crafting world? Well i’m here to share my own experiences with you, which includes my mistakes, one of which was only this month!
Did you know you need declare to HMRC that you are selling products? Yep even as a hobby, the good thing is you don’t pay tax until you earning up to £11,000. You will also be classed as a sole trader, you will run your business as an individual and are self-employed. You are able to take on staff if needed to- Being a sole trader means you are responsible for the business, not that you work alone.
Did you know you need insurance? Product and public liability is a MUST. This covers you and your business if your product harms a customer. I would recommend direct line, it’s around £5 per month, and also includes any craft fairs you attend.
Did you know that certain crafts require certain qualifications, certificates and rules to stick to? I learned this the hard way. In my experience it’s glittering alcohol bottles and glasses. With the glasses you must leave a glitter free rim for the customer to drink from(their lips are not allowed to touch the glass) this of course is up to them but you must state if glittering the whole glass it’s for decorative use only. Now this is the hard part..
You NEED a personal licence and a premises licence to legally sell alcohol, even like me from my little kitchen. In January I passed the course to apply for my personal licence, I applied for my DBS and paid the fee to council for my licence. YAY I thought i’m almost ready to sell alcohol. That was until my licensing officer informed me I needed a premises licence too. The fee for this would be around £1000 and an annual fee every year. So now my plans have been put on hold until I can afford it. To say I am gutted is an understatement, but now you know you wont make the same mistake as me.
There are lots of other types of crafts which you are able to start doing but please do your research. Make sure you know exactly what you need and what is required.