More of My Columbia Trip
Photos of my travels in Columbia! More to come of a very special group of women and children.
The cynical-but-true answer is that you should move production overseas when you know what you are doing. This might sound a bit presumptuous, but the resources needed to research and outsource your labor will play a huge part in the decision to manufacture internationally.
Before you contract your garment out to a factory 10,000 miles away, you need to understand the lifecycle of the garment. It’s impossible to pinpoint the definitive number of units to have pressed without knowing the cost per unit. Likewise, it’s impossible to figure out the cost per unit without including all of the variables; shipping, travel, quotas, and tariffs—in short, LDP (Landed Duty Paid).
As a general rule, I would suggest a starting point of 5,000 units per style before looking into overseas manufacturing. Of course, with all research, it is worth getting multiple quotes, including, in far greater numbers, quotes from domestic manufacturers. Also look into alternative solutions, such as South America; Peru and Colombia have amazing factories and are far closer to the U.S. than Asia or Africa. Continue reading Ask Liza.
People always say manufacturing Stateside is economically unfeasible. This is simply not true; in fact domestic manufacturing can be far more affordable than overseas production depending on a few important factors:
2. The volume of your order.
3. The style and fabric of your design.
All three factors apply to manufacturing the world over, and designers in any country can benefit from these tips. Continue reading Ask Liza.
Liza’s considerable wisdom and no-nonsense delivery helped Dana wake up to the reality of how to successfully run her business.
Photo via Derek Evers of AFINGO
On Monday, AFINGO founder and CEO Liza Deyrmenjian spoke at FIT to a group of students from the Moscow State University, educating the class on what it takes to create a successful business at home and abroad. Russia, a country that has changed drastically over the last ten years, now has the capital and a growing middle class to cultivate and support new businesses and services. Liza explained that in order to start a global business, “you need access to information, connections, advice, resources, and other business models,” before asking the students if they wanted to use that access “to take Russia to the world, or bring the world to Russia?”
“The language of fashion is global, but the business of fashion is different in each country.” Liza pointed to those who’ve done it right in order to try to learn from them—Uniqlo, Zara, Desigual, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren. What contributed to their success? What marketing strategies did they employ? One common and critical theme is that these companies first mastered their own language and style before seeking expansion abroad. They did their research and moved slowly. Zara for example, made a conscious decision to market themselves differently here in the U.S. than in Europe. Research showed Americans would not pay higher prices for the same garments, thus Zara emphasized volume in America, to lower production costs and increase sales. Spanish brandDesigual carefully selected locations near stores like American Eagle and Hollister & Co., because they share the same target market. And in some cases, “you may have to tweak your style to meet international needs,” Liza added. Continue reading Russian Allies.
When it comes to determining what your line should cost to produce, everything starts and ends with your target market. Your retail price is not determined by what your piece costs you to make. Rather your retail target price is what dictates production costs.
For instance, if you are making a line of silk dresses that you feel should retail for $159.00 to $249.00, your wholesale cost has to be roughly half ($80.00 to $125.00), which in turn means your production cost has to be roughly half of that ($40.00 to $62.50). If your target market is on the higher end, for example a woman between the ages of 30 and 55, looking for silk dresses in more of a Ports or Diane Von Furstenberg vein, then you would look to set your target retail price range a bit higher ($250.00 to $500.00). Continue reading Calculating Production Costs.
There is no shortage of ideas in the world of fashion design, but there is a noticeable lack of readily available information and thought leadership when it comes to how fashion designers can Get it Made™.
In my twenty years in the apparel industry I have met more designers who don’t know what to do than designers who do. For the designer, this gap in their knowledge, and their ability to fill it, is the difference between realizing their dreams or not. AFINGO wants to help designers realize their dreams.
That is why “getting it made” is our discipline at AFINGO. We have distilled the production process into four stages, and it is these four stages that provide the framework for the content you’ll find on AFINGO.com.
01 IDEA: This helps the designer think through what their line is, why they are creating this line, who their line is targeted for, what the purpose of the business is and how to make sure this thread, this theme is visually evident throughout the styles and brand.