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09-10-2007
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Thanks BetteT. How big of a collection would be apropriate to start out? How many should I make?

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09-10-2007
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I can't answer that ... I have no experience in design or retail.

But, here's a thought. If you are just taking them around to small boutiques and they are willing to help you, they may ask you to let them sell them under "consignment", which means they pay you, only after they sell them ... rather than taking a chance and buying them outright. If they don't sell, you take them back. If they do sell, they pay you a pre-agreeed upon price. You need to work all that out in advance in a contract. That way you don't need a lot to get started ... they probably won't want to take a lot in the beginning anyway. But, if they get popular, you will need to be able to reproduce them rapidly. At that point, you can actually sell them to the boutiques ... but you must be sure you can deliver the number that they order ... as it says in the posts above.

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10-10-2007
  153
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I like this thread. I too am set on being a designer. I used to get pretty anxious in thinking how I'd get stores to sell/carry my stuff but I'm taking the advice of starting small.
Thanx

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15-01-2008
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How can a person start his/her own business in this industry?
Hi everyone. I have been in this industry for 3 years, working as a clothing services supplier in China. What I am doing is making my customers' designs to be real products, and ship those "MADE IN CHINA" goods to their bontiques. Our company has large customers, such as ZARA, MNG, American & Tristan, and also 100PCS/order designers. I think I know all the processes in this business right now.

What I want to know is, how do the Euro or American designers start their business? How do they pormote their products? Do they all start their business from their own small bontiques?

I know there are 'fairs', for example: our company attend China east fairs, guangzhou fairs... for us exporters to meet the buyers. Are there any similar fairs for fashion designers? And do those clothing companies buy designs or products from designers? I have seen quite a lot of buyers used take photos of our samples, some asked us to produce samples for them, but at fianlly they have no reply at all, they even hasn't pay for those samples they take away. Do designers met same problems?

I also do design works in spare time, both knitts and woven. Do you guys have any suggestion if I want to try to start my own label? Or do you have a plan to start your own business? or corporate with others?

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06-02-2008
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if you want to try the market, try www.etsy.com which is a websote dedicated to independent designers.

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24-03-2008
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In Canada , for each province, the government provides services catering to people who want to start a business
They provide free courses, consultation, etc. to guide you through to developing your business. It's a very good start-off point

Just do a search in the yellow pages

Ex..
http://www.smallbusinessbc.ca/

& there are different ways of approaching a business
Some people do go to trade shows/fairs to sell their designs
while others create the production themselves, even hiring their own employees
Most of the info I know about starting businesses comes from these gvnt services or from friends...

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01-04-2008
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i went to the bendel's new designer open see yesterday, and they loved my designs. they told me to get them professionally sampled and manufactured and they would want to buy them. BUT....I amat a serious loss on how to go about that. I have been a designer and a buyer for big companies so I know about that angle, but am completely clueless on the production part! I even have a showroom willing to rep it. HEEELLPPP!!!

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12-06-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by west63 View Post
i went to the bendel's new designer open see yesterday, and they loved my designs. they told me to get them professionally sampled and manufactured and they would want to buy them. BUT....I amat a serious loss on how to go about that. I have been a designer and a buyer for big companies so I know about that angle, but am completely clueless on the production part! I even have a showroom willing to rep it. HEEELLPPP!!!
For the most part, good factories generally only work with people via connections and word of mouth. I found my factory doing an internship with a designer that set me up..and upon contacting them the first thing they asked me was who gave me their contact information.

Your best bet in finding a good factory is to talk to another designer and ask where they manufacture. This might be a good or bad thing (as they might feel threatened and not cough up any information) but I've found most designers are open to sharing resources.

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16-06-2008
  159
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mouko View Post
For the most part, good factories generally only work with people via connections and word of mouth...Your best bet in finding a good factory is to talk to another designer and ask where they manufacture. This might be a good or bad thing (as they might feel threatened and not cough up any information) but I've found most designers are open to sharing resources.
Talking to others in the business is a good idea. There's another route beyond designers and that's pattern makers. Pattern makers have contractors they work with. If you're making your own patterns then obviously that won't work. In this case, I suppose you could go to a place where designers hang out. Most online fashion forums are for consumers.

Returning to a topic raised on the first page of this thread, to find out more about line sheets, what they are and how to make them, see these articles below. You should probably read them in order.
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/...ine_sheet.html
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/...ine_sheet.html
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/...sheet_pt2.html
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/...r_letters.html
http://www.fashion-incubator.com/mt/...revisited.html

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08-11-2008
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How much money it's to institute your own Label?
I'd like to know more about it.

Especially the costs of a new label in Europe, more especially in Paris.

xx

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10-11-2008
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Starting a line with NO formal training
I know it can be done. Rachel Roy, Tory Burch, Marie-Chantal Miller (Princess Pavlos of Greece) and others were able to do it. If this has already been posted, I apologize. But I wanted to discuss PRACTICAL information for getting a line started when you don't have much construction experience. I am an artiste and have been drawing/designing for years, but I can't sew or create sample. I'd really like to get a small line going over the next 5 years. Any place that I should start? Books to read? How to create a business plan? Etc.

THANKS!!!

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10-11-2008
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Well it does help if you are married to Damon Dash, are a New York socialite with a degree in Art History or a member of the Greek Royal family.

I guess it depends what sort of line you would like. It's simple enough to get samples made up, but really it comes down to marketing and PR, and having a unique selling point that will get you into the first stores.

Having key contacts might make the whole thing easier. Have you considered starting with something smaller? What sort of things do you design at the moment?

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10-11-2008
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But aren't the people you listed famous beforehand? I think you've got your answer there..

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10-11-2008
  164
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I think people made excellent points (in terms of those women already had in's and major financial backing) but what about the Mulleavy sisters at Rodarte? Neither of them (as far as I'm aware) had very much professional sewing experience. Regardless, I think they are the best model to follow because they were total outsiders and basically just went to NYC with a trunk of their clothes and booked an appointment with loads of buyers and press.

If anything, I think these days, it can be easier to get your stuff out there because there are a lot more smaller boutiques online who cater to that market. But what someone said above is crucial - you have to have a unique selling point. Just like Rodarte was amazingly constructed and very very pretty, doing "Bop Basics" isn't going to get your picked up anywhere. What I would do (other than reading all the threads on C&E regarding the industry) is find someone who is really really good at sewing and is able to construct what you design or who you can collaborate with. There are a lot of people out there who do alterations for a living who really know their stuff. One woman in my hometown, I would take pictures of prada runway dresses to her and she would run them up for me. Then I would focus on creating some samples, creating a lookbook, and then hit up independent boutiques in your area, email a high-quality version of your lookbook to other online boutiques, do the trade show in Vegas, and listen to the feedback you are hearing. If someone simply says "no - not right for us" I would follow up and say "Thanks so much for your time - I'm continually working on my line. Would you mind letting me know what exactly didn't work for you?" and go from there. And set up your own website online potentially with your own e-store. From there, start calling up PR people and see about getting your clothes in editorials. That part to me seems to be the most difficult. You can really do all the other stuff on the cheap nowadays thanks to technology and friends with talent!

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10-11-2008
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^^ The Rodarte sisters studied Art history in college. I think one of them even graduated with an art History degree.

Look, the fashion industry LOVES people like you. You don't know anything and you want o put out a line. I would atleast do a couple courses on sewing, design history, fashion history or even how to run a retail store before even considering starting a line. People in the industry can tell those who are absolutely clueless about fashion. I don't care how many friend you have that have talent. It's your line, and if you don't give them direction, they will make you look bad. In order to give direction, you have to know what you're talking about. Get a little education first, try an internship with a small designer and see how hard it is, then you'll know where you want to go because you have seen stuff first hand.

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