There was a time, like so many others in the apparel business, that we suffered though what one might describe as the nightmares of apparel manufacturing.
These were expensive, time consuming and stressful experiences. At the point that we'd had enough we decided to make some changes, taking small steps that we thought, no doubt, would lead to big improvements.
In short, we went from outsourcing all production work to a collection of individual contractors to building and operating our own factory. This was a deep dive into what it really takes to make great product.
We started small, adding a few in-house sewers to supplement our outsourced sewing contractors, just in case they fell behind or had quality issues. The idea was that we'd pick up the slack or fix their production mistakes or quality issues, of which there were many. We thought these were normal things that comes with the territory. Apparel production is just hard and stressful. Our mission was to be able to react to these things so they didn't cause larger problems down the road. What we discovered was that these assumptions were just wrong!
With intense oversight of this entire in-house process it became obvious we found a better way. Our mission transformed from fixing problems to making sure they didn't happen in the first place! We quickly re-tooled the operation and built a factory from the ground up. This article isn't an exhaustive examination of what this required and our experiences along the way, but an overview of what we learned and how it helped us and, more important, how this helped our clients. It turned out that our collective experience and training were perfectly suited for this journey. We stumbled into the sweet spot of applying our respective skillsets and passion towards mastering a set of challenges worthy of intense pursuit.
We went from outsourcing everything... marking and grading, cutting, sewing, quality control and finishing to doing everything in-house. We learned lessons along the way and developed best practices for taking an apparel design, or an idea, through full-cycle product development and full-package production. We learned the hard way, through studying the common problems that make traditional apparel production so difficult, leading to missed deadlines, poor quality and overall, a series of headaches for the brand manager or apparel designer.
We studied workflow, lean manufacturing and sewing efficiencies. We tinkered with assembly methods and trained a fantastic staff of dedicated craftsman. They developed an eye for quality and an ability to spot production problems before they happened. We scrutinized every step in the production process and developed quality control methods second to none.
Our workflow is transparent and visible to you, the client. The platform we've developed and the services we offer allow you to focus on what's important. We build your product while you build your business.
We can say with certainty that we would only be scratching the surface of what's possible with product development and apparel manufacturing if we didn't chart this course. If we didn't pay our dues it just wouldn't be the same. There is no substitute for the hard earned experience we've accumulated. The depth of our understanding can't be compared to supposed experts with fancy resumes working for flashy companies. They probably have great experience, in some areas of the apparel business. But, unless you've truly walked the path, there's no substitute. We've been in the trenches, from top to bottom.
We've done the hard work of mastering the art of making excellent product so you don't have to. Years of hard-earned experience are available to you, on-demand, without the sacrifice. We offer this to you in a well designed package of services so that you can focus on what's important... building your business.