Updated: Oct 25, 2018
The basic needs of any company in fashion! These are usually areas I speak to groups about.
1. Organizing Various Areas of a Business to Impact Financials.
This is the most crucial step in terms or getting things moving both legally and financially. It's important to have your company set up with government tax ID's, accounts, trademarks, copyrights, and etc. It's important to check to see if the company name is taken or under a trademark or copyright. If you don't check, you could find yourself re-branding and paying out fines. Same process will be used with design patents, and etc. I have attached a chart below that shows all the little cogs you need to address when setting up various parts of your company.
2. Quality/Value / Price Relationship
I have spoken to various small fashion groups about this subject in detail. Quality & fit is the biggest problem shops, and customers complain about. That means it is important for designers who want to sell merchandise to change, and to listen.
The quality of design, construction, and concept all play a role in the price you want to ask for a product. If the product is perfect inside and out, but the idea is bad, you won't sell product. Alternatively, if the idea is good, but the sewing and fit is bad, you won't sell merchandise. It is important to have your focus on the trifecta...
1. Fit: The fit and sizing feels like a glove.
2. Idea or concept is a match for market.
3. Quality: Quality of fabric, sewing, and etc.
Below I will show you various mistakes that are seen over and over again. I will be a judge for fashion shows and provide this feedback annually.
This bodice has a poor fit, incorrect textile, and sewing quality is poor. The poor fit enhances the poor sewing quality. The idea may have been good in the mind, but not on the execution.
The trifecta you want as a designer is not showing. This designer maybe really proud of the work, but in honesty, we must look at the item and ask if it could go down a professional runway. Challenging yourself to produce perfect clothing is always a practice.
The above seam is incorrect for this type of fabric. It is just a simple lockstitch, but the material requires a flat felled or french seam. When the fabric is pulled against the body, you can see that the seam begins to curve, and stitching starts to show.
I would like to challenge more small designers to look at sewing with a sense of perfection. A great person to research is Tom Ford.
3. How your company communication works
Every company will have their own way of communicating or working as a team. When you start out you may have 2 or 4 people helping you out, so communication is a group effort. Yet, if there is not accountability or outline to job responsibility or goals, you can end up having a lot of dropped balls.
For example, I may have a Social Media role to fulfill. In order to find the right person I might want a list of things they understand how to do, such as traffic growth projects. I also may want an outline of what time may go into the role for every week. This will help me find exactly the right skill set, and set up an understanding of what this person needs to do every week and every month.
You may find that you will need someone that can do your accounting. This requires you to give information and they will create other reports for your taxes, and etc. So you can image how messy their job can become if communication from various areas is not shared, or even outlined. Below are a few images of various organizational structures. They are helpful in visualizing how teams work together. Most every job with overlap with another job, so its important to visualize the communication cycles.
Small start-up Chart
Expanding Business Chart
As you can see the more you grow, jobs maybe sectioned out by area, and become very specific.
Making these charts allows you to have vision in order to grow. The knee jerk reaction to growth will also become more fluid, and clear. It also communicates with your lead people on what you want to see them create for you.
If you find that you need some coaching with these areas, we can help elevate your company. Success is a team effort.