So, you are interested in starting your own clothing label? Congratulations, as you are very brave for wanting to dive into a venture that so many have failed at before. However, you should not let this fact dissuade you, for there have been thousands of successful clothing designers as well that have managed to penetrate this very competitive industry.
Before anything else, think about what unique clothing item you can bring to the table. For instance, for the icon Diane von Furstenburg it was the wrap dress. And who is not familiar with Tory Burch’s signature Reva flats? One thing that is important to understand about clothing design is that competition is very fierce and thus what you present has to be nothing less than cutting-edge.
Secondly, focus your energy on developing your designs. While it will be very helpful to take a clothing design course at Parson’s or wherever you are able, there is no rule that says you cannot attain professional success without doing so. One of the best things that you can do to further your skills is to keep sketching the clothing design ideas that you have in mind or hire a talented friend to put on paper what you have already envisioned in your head.
After you have the clothing design in place, you will have to create a prototype. This is essential for potential buyers to have an idea of what you are selling. Just a caveat: prototypes can get pricey but prices are varied depending on the type of materials that you use.
Moving forward, the next step is to source your materials. This can be quite taxing but once you find that fabric stock that meets your specified budget and creative requirements, it will be worth the effort twice over. Now is the time to locate a factory that you can use for mass-producing your products. Be very clear about what you want and canvas different factories.
Last but not least, find funding for your venture and decide whether you want to open a brick-and-mortar store or take the e-commerce route. And if you ever run out of ideas for your clothing designs, here are some ways that some famous designers get their creative juices flowing:
Michael Kors got the inspiration for his latest collection from his affinity for dancing, hence the 80s style collection he recently released. On the other hand, Peter Som dug through the annals of history for some 18-century inspired work that is clearly reflected in his watery blue, gray, and washed organdy line. Last but not least, Mary Katrantzou’s work bear an uncanny resemblance to spray paint street art.