Hey Fashionpreneurs! I recently went to Los Angeles to meet one of our contracted manufacturers and connect with some business partners. Within IEFA, we have a long listing of manufacturers that assist our clients with the manufacturing process. Many indie fashion designers need the step by step guidance to avoid the woes of freshman designing. Here are things you need to know prior to entering manufacturing.
1. No numbers, no brand- Nothing moves without actual factual numbers! Sit down and calculate how much you can afford to spend on manufacturing. Consider fabric, labor which averages between $200-$500 for pattern making and $25 per hour for sewing. Create a budget and stick to it. Be reasonable. I will guide you through this process if you are a client.
2. Bulk orders= Bulk profits- Most indie designers think that small orders are more attainable so they aren't overstocked. While this is true, small minimums can sometimes cost you more! This is why I recommend securing a selling strategy with retailers and vendors prior to entering production. Sampling is step one and needs to happen prior to ordering in bulk. Production is the process of cutting and sewing your quantity. If you receive preorders from retailers this payment will cover your production costs.
3. Sketching isn't required- So many designers always tell me that they fear manufacturing because they can't sketch. Well guess what, sketching isn't required! Though you will learn fashion sketching within IEFA, our manufacturers prefer another option which will be a breeze for you to master!
4. Scared money don't make money- That simple. Stop fearing the unknown. What if someone doesn't like my brand? What if I don't sell? SO WHAT! We must try to test the market. Most designers don't proft until year 3. Our clients profit in year 1. Let the fear go and let God.
5. Be Consistent- Ok so you've made this amazing collection, now what? Continue to release consistent collections for your buyers. Restock your top sellers but proceed with new consistent collections.
I hope you find this blog helpful! I am excited to guide you through this process within the IE Fashion Academy. Enrollment is closing on August 31, 2017 and will reopen on January 1, 2018. I am excited to focus on our current clients to offer the best level our service! We will open up waitlist for private clients on September 1, 2017. Don't miss out!