If you are new to the fashion design business then one of the most challenging things you must do is find a clothing manufacturer that meets your needs. The right clothing manufacturer is crucial to the smooth running of your business and to your overall success. Consider your clothing manufacturer or clothing factory to be an integral part of your business and a partner you work alongside, not just someone you hire. When choosing a manufacturer it is important to consider the following factors.
- Find Out Their Experience
Ask UK clothing manufacturers whether they have worked with brands similar to yours before. Think about whether they have worked with brands that are the same size as you, or with a similar type of product. Take a look at images of previous jobs they have worked on and decide if you like the look of their work.
- Discuss Minimum and Maximum Orders
You should know whether your requirements will run towards a large order or a smaller one. For smaller runs, companies may charge you on an hourly basis. The CMT method – Cut, Make, and Trim – is where the designer usually provides all the materials and all the fabrics. This is a good thing for a small order. For larger orders you can usually have the factory work on all aspects of the production process, from pattern development to sourcing the fabrics. These services are likely to include a minimum order so that the order remains cost-effective for the factory.
- Find Out About Quality Control
You need to be sure that your factory has excellent quality control measures in place in order to produce consistently high quality products. If your clothing is not manufactured to a high standard your brand will suffer, no matter how innovative your designs are. Make sure that the factory retains overall control over quality and that they are not just agents for production.
In all cases, make sure that the clothing manufacturer is open to answering your questions and able to provide you with all the information you need. A good quality clothing manufacturer will be able to tell you realistically how much it will cost to produce your garments. They will discuss what they need from you in order to produce the designs, and what you should expect in return. A good clothing manufacturer will be hard to find when you are starting out and do not have contacts already in place, but it is worth making the effort to track down the ideal fit for your clothing range. Ask for recommendations and shop around before making your final decision.
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