Monograms are embroidered emblems, usually initials, stitched on towels, sheets, hats, jackets and other items. If you enjoy embroidery and sewing, starting a monogram service in your area could allow you to earn a living while having fun. To get started, you will need an embroidery machine, a workspace at home or in a retail location and customers. Advertise your services to local sports teams, fraternal organizations and businesses.

Things You Will Need
  • Embroidery machine

  • Embroidery software

  • Embroidery thread

  • Blanks (materials receiving a monogram)

  • Business plan

  • Business license

Start your monogram business from home or rent retail space. If running a business from home, dedicate a workspace for the embroidery machine and storage for blanks (materials to be monogrammed) and embroidery materials such as thread, needles and machine components. If renting a retail space, choose a space large enough to work and display monogrammed items.

Rent or purchase an embroidery machine. The size of the machine and the features needed depend on the types of monogram services you plan to offer. If monogramming hats, purchase a machine with a rotating cap frame attachment. If monogramming jackets or shirts, purchase a machine with a large sewing field. The sewing field is the area surrounding the needle. Other features include automatic thread trimmers and automatic thread changers.

Determine which monogramming services to offer. Common items to be monogrammed include towels, sheets, hats, jackets, shirts and handkerchiefs. Price your services based on the size of the item, whether you supply the blank for monogramming, the amount of time it takes to complete and the size of the order. Create a business plan that outlines your services, price structure and the cost of running your business.

Purchase embroidery supplies such as thread, bobbins, needles and other items from wholesale embroidery supply companies. Buying in bulk allows you to save money.

Apply for a business license. Contact the local small business office, secretary of state's office or department of revenue for more information. If starting a business at a home you rent from another person, you may need to get the landlord's permission in writing first.


Embroidery software allows you to create monograms at a faster rate, but can be expensive to purchase. Software programs include templates that direct the needle to create the monogram without your supervision. Templates limit style choices, however. Purchase software that is appropriate for your embroidery machine.


Create a workspace at home or retail location with plenty of overhead lighting. Lights that are too dim or too harsh can cause permanent damage to your eyes.