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04-10-2005
  61
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acid gave the most important advice i think.

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Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. Anais Nin
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04-10-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fixyfantastica View Post
I think you really need to see your Uni about this. Financially it would be very difficult as i assume that the business would only be 'live' for a year before you go back to Uni for your final year. Do you have a good stock of garments already to sell? I suppose you could apply for credit to fund the idea but then you are putting yourself in a lot of debt for your final year. Would the money be used on things like materials for the products or would it be used for marketing/ overhead purposes.

I think its disgusting that companies have discriminated against you, and i really think that you need to speak to your Uni about that. Any good university should have a whole protfolio of companies to work for for your year out.

Although i think that in essence you have a good idea, but i'm not sure that it will logitsically work for one year. I also think that you would gain much more industry experience by working for a company. I would really suggest that you speak to your uni again and seek advice from them before taking a huge risk like this.

i totally agree with the above statement. i don't have any other advice, given your time constaints of only one year. but i do wish you all the best.

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Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. Anais Nin

Last edited by BetteT; 23-07-2008 at 09:10 PM.
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05-10-2005
  63
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Thanks Oria...

Hi Foxy, in response to some of your questions, I don't have any stock! i just have designs. I would just need money for materials, equipment etc. I know what your saying, a year is not enough time, but I think im just going to set the foundations to maybe start up my business when I finish uni. I'll just do things like market research, maybe produce some prototypes myself (although i've never used a sewing machine)!.

My uni provided us students with 100s of job vacancies with companies theyve dealt with before, but apart from doing that they cant help anymore. It cant be proved that companies have discriminated, but frankly it doesnt take a genius to work it out with some of the comments they give. I guess thats life & i get it all the time in all areas of life, I suppose thats why maybe im better off working alone

Thanks forf your comments

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05-10-2005
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My advice is to start small and start part time. Ok, assuming you have made some prototypes and are happy with them, start by selling to friends. Listen to all comments and criticism and alter your designs accordingly. You could hold lingerie parties for your friends and their friends and sell that way. Sell from your own market stall or from your own website. That way you can iron out any issues with fit or quality before you start selling to other stores.

This way if it doesn't work you haven't lost lots of money or your main job. I know of many designers who started this way. It's the least risky.

Once you start selling to stores it can be tough. If things fall apart, you will have to refund your customer. If there are really big issues with fit or quality they may not order from you again. Also payment is a big deal - be very careful. You might want to deal only with letter of credit type payments, that way you know you will get your money. At this stage it might be a good idea to recruit an agent who knows the business who will sell for you on a comission basis. At this stage you will be looking at finding a factory too.

Most small fashion businesses fail, not because they don't have orders, but because they cannot find a bank to loan the money to make production or deliver on time. Is there a rich relative or friend you can ask to back you?

Good luck, anyway!


Last edited by renferme; 05-10-2005 at 08:26 AM.
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05-10-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fashion_Hottie
Thanks Oria...

Hi Foxy, in response to some of your questions, I don't have any stock! i just have designs. I would just need money for materials, equipment etc. I know what your saying, a year is not enough time, but I think im just going to set the foundations to maybe start up my business when I finish uni. I'll just do things like market research, maybe produce some prototypes myself (although i've never used a sewing machine)!.
oh now there is a better picture for me. i think the idea of setting a foundation is a good one.

you have never used a sewing machine, but maybe you know how to sew? if not do you have friend or people you know who could help with the sewing on machine or hand? all of what you have suggested is sound to me, especially the prototypes. if you use this time from school to pan out your line i think it would be much more productive. given most process of productions start with the research of fabrics, starting of the designs, selecting/ordering fabrics, creating patterns/begin samples, and then developing the collection, etc. the main thing with this foundation you want to create is to keep costs down. and i think to seek out friends/family members for brutal honesty is best. as this helps with quality control or when you are small is the major quality control.

in the end as others have said money is always the key, which is why i believe to stretch everything out that can be, keep costs low, even now during the stage you call foundation, because it will help you once you move on to full on production. the business end is not always alluring but having a handle on that and knowing how to maximize all you have is the only way (to me) that works.

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Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. Anais Nin
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05-10-2005
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i tried to edit my post but it timed out jaja.

anyways as far as the financial part. build good credit for yourself if you have not already it opens a lot of doors. there are angel investors, family members, etc. but the business plan even for fashion needs to be there too, which i see you are working on good!

also with stores remember you should seek the credit report of each store, or a letter of credit (but my experience is that a small stores don't like to obtain this as they say it is expensive). you can do cod, which is asking for a check certified maybe, money order, or some kind of payment on delivery. you can do consignment and even trunk shows. so do not get discouraged if stores don't jump to carry just go on to the next best step which could be a trunk show or consignment with stores who show interest. .

ok i think i have added a lot jaja. i do wish you all the best again

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Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. Anais Nin
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05-10-2005
  67
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Starting a fashion design company is like starting ten jobs. Why not try to focus on an aspect that you are interested in, maybe that you have experience in?

For instance... I freelance doing illustration and technical design and sample making. Perhaps you could work marketing or events or buying and selling or styling if you don't know how to sew.

You want to position yourself to your strengths to be successful.

I'm starting my own little venture and it's crazy how little I know... and I have 3 years of fashion design school and some industry experience behind me.

Fashion design is not as simple as it may seem from the outside... it takes a lot of time and work and experience to develop. Working with other people will help. Don't get discouraged... 5% of the people out there are great, but you may have to make 20 cold calls or more to find them... you'll meet all kinds but -

it's critical you don't give up if you want to succeed.

The worst that can happen is they'll say no... you may meet some real gems, I have.

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06-10-2005
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Thank you all so much for your advicee & comments, it is extremely useful to know. I will now sit down & decide on the right direction to take.

I see how selling to shops maybe risky & it will be very difficult, so it probably will be better to leave that until later on. Lady Muck I like your ideas of selling to my own market - friends, putting on parties, stalls etc. This may prove to be more successful because on a smaller scale I can market it all easier myself. & then I can gain some real honest feedback that will help me progress.

Oria I know hows to sew normally, but I would love to learn how to use a sewing machine. I am going to maybe see if there's anyone local who could help me, they maybe able to help make my designs at a low cost. But your right, most of my year will probably be spent doing research & setting things up, which is useful time being spent on understanding everything. The finance stuff tends to go way over my head, luckily my friend is studying accounting & finance so will come over soon to help me! Sorry but whats consignment?

Finalfashion you make some very useful points too. I am taking on a lot of jobs, some that I really don't know much about, I think design & sales/marketing are my strong points & taking on Lady Muck's ideas about selling on small scales could be a good opportunity for me to use my expertise. I realise a lot of cold calling will be required (something i'm not comfortable with), so I think I've come to the conclusion to leave shops etc alone for now!

Many thanks guys, I'll let you know my progress (if theres any lol)

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06-10-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fashion_Hottie

Oria Sorry but whats consignment?
consignment is where the the buyer doesn't really place an order, but they agree to place your product in their store, and pay you minus a comission for whatever of yours is purchased. this sometimes helps you get in the door, i know several designers who did this, and go on to have their next season purchased like normal. it also can open doors for you with other stores, but a lot of designers shun the idea, because it works more for the store than you. a lot of times this works well when you already have merchandise and need to move it. again i have seen the pros of cons of it based on friends of mines who have used it. it is just another option in the sea of many.

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Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. Anais Nin
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11-11-2005
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How to start my own label without college? please read if you can
Do you guys really think that with just this type of book, you can start your own label, and actually have it become sucessfull? I was looking at: fashionforprofit.com that one seems to be good

And there's awhole bunch of other ones out there too. I would rather do what Jennifer Lopez does, like just have me do all the designs, they pay everyone else to do everything (like source the fabrics, find the cheapest but highest quality manufactors, market the clothing to high end department stores, promote the brand through publications). Like I just wanna design them, and have a whole team do the rest. Bascially what Gwen does with Zaldy. Anyone know how I can do this?

And I've already tried my hand at both fashion design college, and fashion marketing college, and I just dont have the engergy to sit there 5 days a week for 2 years (just for 1 course also). So I have to look into alternate ways. J lo has a great seam, and so does Gwen. How can I get teams like them?

(PS- I am not working for that site or plugging it)

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11-11-2005
  71
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(^ Just a note ... they're stars... they have many more things/people at their disposal. They have the money, the celebrity, the connections...)

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11-11-2005
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I know, so what would my best bet be? Just to order that book and take all that info, and do the best I can with that?

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11-11-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starz1
I would rather do what Jennifer Lopez does, like just have me do all the designs, they pay everyone else to do everything (like source the fabrics, find the cheapest .........
Hmmmm...I don't think JLo or Gwen actually design anything that bears their name; they probably look at a finished sample or sketch and say "okay", if even that at all....

You need major capital to put together a fashion brand, and it can take years (sometimes never) before you see a profit.

You sound like a better candidate for an internship with a designer or label- even if you never plan to do the boring work yourself, you will need to know the fundamentals of how a business works.

Or, you could simply open a small dressmaking business, selling to friends, family and on EBay.

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Last edited by BetteT; 28-01-2010 at 01:23 PM.
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12-11-2005
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Quote:
Originally Posted by starz1
And I've already tried my hand at both fashion design college, and fashion marketing college, and I just dont have the engergy to sit there 5 days a week for 2 years (just for 1 course also). So I have to look into alternate ways. J lo has a great seam, and so does Gwen. How can I get teams like them?
To be honest if you 'don't have the energy' to do something 5days a week for 2 years (alot of fashion courses are alot longer than that) then perhaps you're not in the right profession...I think you need more passion. It's very difficult to get all of what you want at your disposal (the fabric cutters etc) if you're not a known artist/designer already...it's difficult enough for people with the qualifications to even get noticed. I think if you really want to do this...you've got to be prepared to learn, and do fashion courses.

Unless of course you are of celebrity status...then it's more who you know as opposed to what you know.

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12-11-2005
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^ I agree. It's next to impossible (because nothing is impossible) to actually become successful with having your own label w/o prior knowledge of "how-to" and not to mention formal training. And sorry, but a book can't help you out.

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