Maker Threads is a minimalistic clothing label designed for passionate makers.

Maker Threads

Portrait of the maker

Lachlan Kirkwood

Maker

Maker

My biggest takeaway is to start simple.

Instead of building a custom ecommerce store in Webflow or Bubble, I decided to use off-the-shelf tools like Shopify to create a simple product that could immediately deliver value. This significantly reduced my product build time from weeks to hours.

Instead of focussing on new features to build, I intentionally stayed focussed on simplifying the whole process, allowing me to streamline the journey of getting to revenue.

Here is a great reference and back story to Lachlan's project:
Threads: https://lachlankirkwood.com/2020/08/27/product-maker-journey/

Here are some key parts of his story:
"I initially didn't even start with Shopify. I knew I could build an even scrappier MVP to validate the idea. I started with a generic Teespring store to generate my first few sales.

Both Teespring and Shopify process all payments out of the box.The biggest insight I'd have is learning to only solve problems as they arrive - particularly in the early days.

It's so tempting to get lost building features, but I've forced myself to be critical about what I can work on."

Starter Stack
3
hours to build

Simplest way to start an eCommerce site

What is it:

Maker Threads is a minimalistic clothing label designed for passionate makers.

Maker Insight:

Lacklan: "My biggest takeaway is to start simple.

Instead of building a custom ecommerce store in Webflow or Bubble, I decided to use off-the-shelf tools like Shopify to create a simple product that could immediately deliver value. This significantly reduced my product build time from weeks to hours.

Instead of focussing on new features to build, I intentionally stayed focussed on simplifying the whole process, allowing me to streamline the journey of getting to revenue."

What did I learn:

1. Lachlan: "My biggest takeaway is to start simple." I could write an entire book about starting simple. In fact I am. You can only really understand this principle two ways. By learning from your mistakes launching project after project. Or from learning from others like a resource or guide on how to best navigate making and launching.

I cannot put it any better than how Lachlan stated using Shopify instead of Bubble or Webflow. Many Makers suffer from shiny object syndrome. Using Bubble or Webflow are the hot new tools. But they require significantly more of a learning curve then Shopify. Do not delude yourself into thinking that you're making progress by building a fancy website that looks nice. The time it will take you to do this will reduce your chances of success. Because the longer you wait to get your product shipped, the less likely you will actually ship it.

That is a huge reason why I felt necessary to write The Lean Side Project. I have failed or (learned my lessons) on this from my previous startup. As Makers we instinctively make do with what we know and just start making. And because we just wing it as we go we use what knowledge we do have on creating startups when those strategies and tactics used don't work with creating a side project. That is what I am trying to help change is equip Makers with the knowledge and process for making by starting small. The starting point should change. By making side project and not building a startup.

I love the approach Lachlan took here. Why is it so valuable? Because as Makers we love to do two things. Build because thats actually the easy part. And overbuild because it gives us the illusion that we are making progress on our project. Building something doesn't mean you're making progress on your project. Only validation means you've made progress.

Because you build something that nobody wants, then you haven't made progress.

2. What is the fastest way to validate? When building a project, you're goal to start a business isn't to build a massive website. You're goal is to validate as fast as possible. How can you do that? By using tools with smaller learning curves.

In this case study, Lachlan explains his starting point: "I initially didn't even start with Shopify. I knew I could build an even scrappier MVP to validate the idea. I started with a generic Teespring store to generate my first few sales."

In the Lean Side Project you'll get complete access to the database of 150 no-code projects. Each labeled with starter stack, mid-level or expert level. And categorized by product type. So that means you'll be able to filter for the product you want to make and whats the best starter stack to use. This will save you time and validate faster.

3. "The biggest insight I'd have is learning to only solve problems as they arrive - particularly in the early days."

This is a hard lesson that I have had to learn. As a Maker there are so many things that you have to do to make and ship. But how do you know what to focus on? This comes with experience but, because this can be so variant for everyone it's hard to give overlaying advice that works for everyone. But generally if you set you navigational beacon on validation over making, you can work backwards from there to decide on what you really need. And once you start getting feedback and makes steps towards iteratively shipping, only then do you truly see which problems are important. And then you will have momentum to actually fix them. Because you will have confidence you're not wasting your time.

Also, this relates to overbuilding. Sometimes this is hard because as Maker's we fall into the trap of just building one more thing. But until you actually start talking to Makers, and seeing who actually buys your product or uses it or promotes it without asking then you are guessing at what it is exactly you should be focusing on. It's always good to start with a hunch, but you must build in feedback loops along the way or you may drift so far from what people actually need with your product you won't build something that people need.

Other awesome no-code showcases

Icon of showcase

Content Writing Jobs

We support content writers by providing best quality content writing job posts daily on the website, via newsletters and through social media (LinkedIn, Twitter).
Airtable
Make
Memberstack
Figma
Mailerlite
Portrait of the maker
Edgaras Benediktavicius
Icon of showcase

The ABA e-Glossary

I created this as a graduate student of Applied Behavior Analysis. I found myself searching through various sources to find the definitions and translations I needed.
Airtable
Bubble
Dorik
Crisp Chat
Make
Portrait of the maker
Jared Gibb
Icon of showcase

Hello Tyro

Hello Tyro helps Belgian and French startups (soon) build their business faster with the best young talents (interns).
Airtable
Make
Jetboost.io
Landbot
Mailerlite
Portrait of the maker
Pierre Tillement
Icon of showcase

StudentFirst

studentfirst is a revolutionary a admission application manager for international students that want to study at a business school in Canada!
Bubble
Mailchimp
Stripe
Twitter
Portrait of the maker
Shomik Roy
See 175+ No-code Showcases
See all the showcases