The production is probably the least glamorous part of the textile industry, but paradoxically the most important! We will detail here the different stages of production of a garment so that you do not waste time looking for them. Besides, you will see that this part of the production chain is time-consuming, and it should be anticipated enough to release your collection at the right time.
We are assuming that you have already designed your clothing line by yourself or with Luftkuss.
1. The technical sheet
The technical sheet is the assembly instructions for each item of clothing in your collection. It is made from your drawings/sketches of your clothing line.
It is an indispensable document, which serves to get everyone to agree on the details of each piece in your collection. Which fabrics for which parts of the garment, which button in which place. The presence or not of a topstitch, and the color of the thread used for it.
2. Order supplies for the various tests
Before purchasing the raw materials needed to manufacture your collection, you need to do some tests. No question of writing a check for several thousand euros to buy fabric that will be useless! A few meters of each fabric considered is enough to realize the quality, and then be able to manufacture the prototypes (step 4).
3. Develop patterns
You have pre-selected the materials and supplies for your collection, that’s good. Now you need to draw the patterns for each piece of your clothing line. It is during this stage that the pattern maker transforms your ideas into technical models, which allow the cutting of fabrics and the sewing of your collection.
4. Prototype and test
When the patterns are drawn, you have to do some testing to make sure that the clothes are wearable and perfectly match your ideas. Prototypes are sewn and tested on mannequins, to make sure all is well. This is also the time to test the different materials ordered in step 2.
5. Final selection before production
It is time to definitively validate the raw materials as well as the models that you are going to make. If, during step 4, some models did not convince you, now is the time to remove them from the collection.
6. Presale of the collection
This is a key step! Your collection is not yet made, you must already sell it! How successful you are at this point affects the amount of clothing you need to produce. The more interested buyers are, and the more orders they place, the more production will have to be produced next.
There are many ways to sell a collection: Trade shows, fashion shows, or a distribution network. You can also decide to pre-sell your products through crowdfunding or via your website.
7. Purchase of raw materials
Now that you know exactly how many parts to produce, you need to order the raw materials needed for the making. Be careful to plan a little more than ordered, to be able to anticipate errors or defects, but also any changes.
At the same time, you have to decide sizes for your models. Unless you are only making one size clothing, this is a mandatory step. You need to settle your collection in several sizes, starting from the prototype. The more extensive the gradation, the more difficult it will be to manage stocks and sell parts.
Before giving the green light to your atelier, it is advisable to do a few small tests to be sure that everything will work. We as Luftkuss, do a “pre-production” to verify that each model will be correctly assembled. When everything is OK, we go to step 10.
10. Mass production
This is the time when your products are made. Needless to say, this is the most critical phase of the process. If you sew your clothes yourself, you need to allow time for this. The pace of a professional assembly line workshop and a single person at home does not work in the same way, and the time it takes is obviously to be counted.
11. Quality control and validation of the production
Throughout the making of your production, you will have to control what is done. Do the parts conform to what had been decided? Do they respect the specifications and the technical sheet? Are there any details to take up or review? Has the deadline been met? Is the amount of fabric used as expected?
Be very careful during this step. Once it is over, it is too late to change anything or back down without a cost.
12. Shipments to buyers
When your collection is finally ready, it’s time to part with it! You must deliver the buyers who have pre-ordered your creations, then distribute the quantities of stocks according to your organization: web, shops, influencers/press.
As you can see, none of the stages in textile production need to be rushed. A single grain of sand in any one of the phases will compromise your success.
The good news is Luftkuss is here to manage all these processes for you. And you can take part whichever step you wish with our experienced artisans and creative designers! If you would like to learn more, simply click here to get in touch with us.