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Clothing Brand start-up, first business

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Fabian1999

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Apr 8, 2021
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Hello people, now that i have finished TMF , and im halfway trough Unscripted , i have started a business/ my own clothing brand. Yes i thought it would be a good idea, because i've always had trouble finding jeans with a good fit and design that stands out from the crowd.

I got a tech-pack done and have a manufacturer in italy who is creating my first sample at the moment. This takes a minimum of 6-weeks. And then the production of my 100 pieces for starting up. 6-weeks…

I have someone who is working on creating a clean website with a webshop for my brand, so everything is ready for when the big order from italy arrives.

But im wondering if its worth it??
Is there someone who have tried something similar? Because its kinda expensive since im manufacturing in italy, but i want the best quality for my product.

Best regards Fabian
 

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Marigold

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Hello people, now that i have finished TMF , and im halfway trough Unscripted , i have started a business/ my own clothing brand. Yes i thought it would be a good idea, because i've always had trouble finding jeans with a good fit and design that stands out from the crowd.

I got a tech-pack done and have a manufacturer in italy who is creating my first sample at the moment. This takes a minimum of 6-weeks. And then the production of my 100 pieces for starting up. 6-weeks…

I have someone who is working on creating a clean website with a webshop for my brand, so everything is ready for when the big order from italy arrives.

But im wondering if its worth it??
Is there someone who have tried something similar? Because its kinda expensive since im manufacturing in italy, but i want the best quality for my product.

Best regards Fabian
Would it be an idea to test the concept first by advertising the jeans before manufacturing a whole load of them?

What market research have you done?
 

Strm

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Get more than one sample. Different kinds. As many as possible. Talk with the manufacturer. Then pictures, cool videos, some paid ads etc and get feedback. Before you make the big order.
 

poseidn

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shouldve tested if people want what you're selling first.. spent money on a website before a dollar of revenue - you'll look back in 5 years and laugh..

95% of these generic ecom brands suck a$$ and never make any $, especially clothing

But it will be a very good experience and you will learn lots, so keep at it as it sounds like you're already committed
 

Fabian1999

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Apr 8, 2021
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Get more than one sample. Different kinds. As many as possible. Talk with the manufacturer. Then pictures, cool videos, some paid ads etc and get feedback. Before you make the big order.
Allright im currently designing the second style. I will definetely try advertising as soon as i got 2-3 samples done. Should i do ads with instagram, facebook and google ads? Or should i find a company to do the advertising for me?
 

Fabian1999

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Apr 8, 2021
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shouldve tested if people want what you're selling first.. spent money on a website before a dollar of revenue - you'll look back in 5 years and laugh..

95% of these generic ecom brands suck a$$ and never make any $, especially clothing

But it will be a very good experience and you will learn lots, so keep at it as it sounds like you're already committed
Yepp im just jumping into the adventure, try my best, fail, and learn from it. I just wanted to get started with something NOW. After reading TMF i feel old with 21 years, so i just got to start with something.
 

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Allright im currently designing the second style. I will definetely try advertising as soon as i got 2-3 samples done. Should i do ads with instagram, facebook and google ads? Or should i find a company to do the advertising for me?

I would make a quick FB page and start running some ads/boosted posts to get some feedback. That's what I've done before. If you can do it yourself, that would be the best. Same time when they are making samples, you can learn the basics about advertising on FB/IG. On youtube and check out some courses on Udemy.com Usually around 10$ per course.

Don't over think, small steps. It takes time.
 

Fabian1999

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Apr 8, 2021
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I would make a quick FB page and start running some ads/boosted posts to get some feedback. That's what I've done before. If you can do it yourself, that would be the best. Same time when they are making samples, you can learn the basics about advertising on FB/IG. On youtube and check out some courses on Udemy.com Usually around 10$ per course.

Don't over think, small steps. It takes time.
Thank you, i will check it out and start off with a facebook site and do some ads there, but i need to wait till i got my sample so i can get some professional pictures of my sample for the ad.
 

Marigold

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Yepp im just jumping into the adventure, try my best, fail, and learn from it. I just wanted to get started with something NOW. After reading TMF i feel old with 21 years, so i just got to start with something.
21 is not old!!
 

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woken

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Yepp im just jumping into the adventure, try my best, fail, and learn from it.
Pretty common, believe me.
Even though I’ve always known what I’m doing is wrong because I didn’t have a precedent, I went ahead with it.
In my opinion, like yours here, that’s the only way to learn or “learn as you go” as I’m calling it.


After 4-5 small successes with different stores, I decided I knew enough to start a clothing brand.
Not the kind that people do now with POD or slapping a logo on a t shirt.
A brand where I went from outsourcing materials all the way to design and sales.
I was good in photoshop so I could always make designs.
But I had to learn about patterns, stitching, materials, sizes, fit, etc.


Because its kinda expensive since im manufacturing in italy, but i want the best quality for my product.
I started with the idea of creating a luxury brand.
Designed a full blown collection. Velvet bombers with python leather sleeves.
Swarovski embellished hoodies.
Sweatshirts made out of 6 different materials.( think of a camouflage
If you’re not familiar, swarovski’s are expensive.

My designs were and are great.
I offered quality but since I wasn’t some well known brand, I tried to attract customers with “fair prices”
Ie: cost to make was £100/hoodie and I was selling for £150.
Bullshit. That doesn’t account marketing or packaging and shipping.

I wanted to offer quality so much, everything was packaged in magnetic opening boxes and I had leather HANG TAGS. Hahahahah I laugh now.

After spending about £50k, I realized I won’t have enough money to manufacture the whole collection.
I decided I’d only do hoodies, t shirts and sweatshirts.
In the meantime I spent some more because yeah, next design is better than the old one. ;))

Got to the point where I could only manufacture the hoodies, but I wasn’t going to have any money left for marketing.

I figured all of these where “challenges” I had to pass, not realising I’m spiralling down an endless pit.
I then cut some more designs that I decided I couldn’t do myself.

I was left with only the designs that I could make at home.
I bought myself a vinyl cutter, lots of swarovski rhinestones, a heat press, blank hoodies, and there I was.

Given these conditions, the hoodies turned out great.

Made the store. Bear in mind up to this point I done 0 to verify anybody wants my shit.

Started with fb ads, got good engagement.
The whole process of working for this for a year and a half was paying off.
I sold 2 hoodies at £250/each before I ran out of marketing money.

Most people that interacted with the ads were saying the same thing.
Beautiful designs, but too expensive.

I had two comments that opened my eyes.
“It’s nice, but why would I buy this when I can buy a Versace hoodie instead?”.

You see, the whole point is:

People don’t want top quality if it comes with an expensive price tag when you’re nobody.

Had I spent the £50k in creating an online presence that people would go crazy for,
I could’ve slapped a logo on a t shirt, write MADE IN LONDON on it, and sell it for £99 a piece.

When you think again that you want to offer top quality, ask yourself if it makes sense in terms of business for you.
I recommend you visit versace,gucci, louis vuitton’s websites.
Sure, they’ve got some very good products in the thousands.
But they also slap their logo on a cotton t shirt and sell it for £500.
And it works for them. Because they’ve created a culture. A lifestyle.

Went a bit overboard with my reply, but there it is. I’ve done everything right for the manufacturing part. What I was missing was business sense and brand sense. That’s why wearing different hats for your business is hard. You cannot think of everything.

Good luck on your journey.
 
Last edited:

Fabian1999

New Contributor
Apr 8, 2021
11
9
12
Pretty common, believe me.
Even though I’ve always known what I’m doing is wrong because I didn’t have a precedent, I went ahead with it.
In my opinion, like yours here, that’s the only way to learn or “learn as you go” as I’m calling it.


After 4-5 small successes with different stores, I decided I knew enough to start a clothing brand.
Not the kind that people do now with POD or slapping a logo on a t shirt.
A brand where I went from outsourcing materials all the way to design and sales.
I was good in photoshop so I could always make designs.
But I had to learn about patterns, stitching, materials, sizes, fit, etc.



I started with the idea of creating a luxury brand.
Designed a full blown collection. Velvet bombers with python leather sleeves.
Swarovski embellished hoodies.
Sweatshirts made out of 6 different materials.( think of a camouflage
If you’re not familiar, swarovski’s are expensive.

My designs were and are great.
I offered quality but since I wasn’t some well known brand, I tried to attract customers with “fair prices”
Ie: cost to make was £100/hoodie and I was selling for £150.
Bullshit. That doesn’t account marketing or packaging and shipping.

After spending about £50k, I realized I won’t have enough money to manufacture the whole collection.
I decided I’d only do hoodies, t shirts and sweatshirts.
In the meantime I spent some more because yeah, next design is better than the old one. ;))

Got to the point where I could only manufacture the hoodies, but I wasn’t going to have any money left for marketing.

I figured all of these where “challenges” I had to pass, not realising I’m spiralling down an endless pit.
I then cut some more designs that I decided I couldn’t do myself.

I was left with only the designs that I could make at home.
I bought myself a vinyl cutter, lots of swarovski rhinestones, a heat press, blank hoodies, and there I was.

Given these conditions, the hoodies turned out great.

Made the store. Bear in mind up to this point I done 0 to verify anybody wants my shit.

Started with fb ads, got good engagement.
The whole process of working for this for a year and a half was paying off.
I sold 2 hoodies at £250/each before I ran out of marketing money.

Most people that interacted with the ads were saying the same thing.
Beautiful designs, but too expensive.

I had two comments that opened my eyes.
“It’s nice, but why would I buy this when I can buy a Versace hoodie instead?”.

You see, the whole point is:

People don’t want top quality if it comes with an expensive price tag when you’re nobody.

Had I spent the £50k in creating an online presence that people would go crazy for,
I could’ve slapped a logo on a t shirt, write MADE IN LONDON on it, and sell it for £99 a piece.

When you think again that you want to offer top quality, ask yourself if it makes sense in terms of business for you.
I recommend you visit versace,gucci, louis vuitton’s websites.
Sure, they’ve got some very good products in the thousands.
But they also slap their logo on a cotton t shirt and sell it for £500.
And it works for them. Because they’ve created a culture. A lifestyle.

Went a bit overboard with my reply, but there it is.
Good luck on your journey.
Oh shit, sounds like you have lived my future, i was planning to sell every piece for 120$ because it has 100% egyptian cotton and is manufactured in italy. I get a piece for 36$ from italy. But you mentioned advertising in the profit calculation, and i didnt even think about that ads will drag down my profit.. and my price may be too high for an unknown brand. My plan was to start selling with a 50% sale.

But thanks for you story, i will try advertising the samples first, see if people likes it and then decide if i want to try. Ane maybe changing to a chinese manufacturer, for a better price.
 

woken

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My plan was to start selling with a 50% sale.
This is wrong. Especially on a first impression.

Let’s say you want to hire me as a consultant for your brand right now. You know I have experience, cause I told you. You might even see some reviews of me.
My fee is £1000. But for you, I make a 50% discount.

Since I reinforced everywhere that I know my shit( your jeans are high quality) why would I offer my service to you for less??
Wouldn’t your mind wonder why?

Sales work and that’s a different thing.
It goes against your whole thing starting with a sale. You’re trying to build high perceived value, why is it on discount then?
Also, people want things other people have. When you have that + sale, yes, it works.
But in this case, in my opinion, you shouldn’t start with a sale. Plus you’re trying to see if it sells at $120. You’re not validating your $120 product if you sell it at $60.
 

Fabian1999

New Contributor
Apr 8, 2021
11
9
12
This is wrong. Especially on a first impression.

Let’s say you want to hire me as a consultant for your brand right now. You know I have experience, cause I told you. You might even see some reviews of me.
My fee is £1000. But for you, I make a 50% discount.

Since I reinforced everywhere that I know my shit( your jeans are high quality) why would I offer my service to you for less??
Wouldn’t your mind wonder why?

Sales work and that’s a different thing.
It goes against your whole thing starting with a sale. You’re trying to build high perceived value, why is it on discount then?
Also, people want things other people have. When you have that + sale, yes, it works.
But in this case, in my opinion, you shouldn’t start with a sale. Plus you’re trying to see if it sells at $120. You’re not validating your $120 product if you sell it at $60.
That made me see it from another perspective, so instead i should just go with the full price and see if it draws attention ? It makes sense when you say it that way, my plan was creating a high quality brand, and the price should scream "value". So yes starting with a discount would make the whole brand cheap..
 

woken

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That made me see it from another perspective, so instead i should just go with the full price and see if it draws attention ? It makes sense when you say it that way, my plan was creating a high quality brand, and the price should scream "value". So yes starting with a discount would make the whole brand cheap..
You need more to scream “value”’ than the price.

My man, you could sell $1000 jeans. Check AMIRI. Study what he done, the surroundings that the brand was built on.
By no means I’m trying to discourage you and you shouldn’t stop.

I’m trying to point that there is a less expensive way.

You don’t even need products at all in the beginning.

If you’re any good at drawing or photoshop, you can make a high quality render of the jeans. If you can’t do that, fiverr or upwork is your friend.
I’m talking photorealistic renders. They look better than real products too,lol.

Do that, put it on the site. See if it sells. If it does, you can refund the customer straight away, stating it sold out.

You can also search until you find a manufacturer that can make one sample only. You can then put it online etc, same process. But you don’t need 100 pairs to validate the idea.
 

Fabian1999

New Contributor
Apr 8, 2021
11
9
12
You need more to scream “value”’ than the price.

My man, you could sell $1000 jeans. Check AMIRI. Study what he done, the surroundings that the brand was built on.
By no means I’m trying to discourage you and you shouldn’t stop.

I’m trying to point that there is a less expensive way.

You don’t even need products at all in the beginning.

If you’re any good at drawing or photoshop, you can make a high quality render of the jeans. If you can’t do that, fiverr or upwork is your friend.
I’m talking photorealistic renders. They look better than real products too,lol.

Do that, put it on the site. See if it sells. If it does, you can refund the customer straight away, stating it sold out.

You can also search until you find a manufacturer that can make one sample only. You can then put it online etc, same process. But you don’t need 100 pairs to validate the idea.
Okay thank you, maybe this is the kind of skill i need to learn. I got to contact the manufacuturer and hear if it is possible to do only samples at first, they cost arround 400$ Per sample, so that should be a nice business for them anyway. And then i can check out if it sells first, guess it will save me a lot of trouble and money. Thank you for all your input, its good to hear that im not all alone in the jungle of entrepreneurship.
 

woken

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Okay thank you, maybe this is the kind of skill i need to learn. I got to contact the manufacuturer and hear if it is possible to do only samples at first, they cost arround 400$ Per sample, so that should be a nice business for them anyway. And then i can check out if it sells first, guess it will save me a lot of trouble and money. Thank you for all your input, its good to hear that im not all alone in the jungle of entrepreneurship.
You’re never alone.
I was implying something cheaper than $400.

Check what I said about photorealistic renders. It’s way cheaper. I know it would feel like progress to see with your own eyes the jeans and hold them. But in reality, it’ll only make a difference for you, emotionally.

it’s a whole vibe to see something come to fruition that you put hours in to think design and make.

On top of all of that, you’ve got to learn fb ads. That’s a whole another topic I won’t start.

it’s not easy, but you should love the process.

everything you learn now can be used again in the future.

Looking forward to see your progress.
 

Fabian1999

New Contributor
Apr 8, 2021
11
9
12
You’re never alone.
I was implying something cheaper than $400.

Check what I said about photorealistic renders. It’s way cheaper. I know it would feel like progress to see with your own eyes the jeans and hold them. But in reality, it’ll only make a difference for you, emotionally.

it’s a whole vibe to see something come to fruition that you put hours in to think design and make.

On top of all of that, you’ve got to learn fb ads. That’s a whole another topic I won’t start.

it’s not easy, but you should love the process.

everything you learn now can be used again in the future.

Looking forward to see your progress.
I will check it out, im posting again as soon as i have updates on my journey.
 

MitchM

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I agree with the others. I definitely always try to be on the side of positivity when it comes to starting something new, but testing first won't hurt.

Everyone wants to do clothing, and I honestly cringe inside when I have friends telling me they want to do the same thing.

Remember CENTS.

Control
Entry
Need
Time
Scale

Entry is relatively easy in this area.

Need... well, I guess you'll have to see how different and desirable the jeans you are making actually are.

Keep at it, but don't be disheartened if this doesn't work out. You probably aren't starting off on the strongest foot here. If you are, congratulations :)

You figured something out that few people can!

The best thing about your post is that you're taking action. Something most people don't do. Drill into your head the CENTS model and try to deliver on that in the future if this doesn't work.

Best wishes.
 

Fabian1999

New Contributor
Apr 8, 2021
11
9
12
I agree with the others. I definitely always try to be on the side of positivity when it comes to starting something new, but testing first won't hurt.

Everyone wants to do clothing, and I honestly cringe inside when I have friends telling me they want to do the same thing.

Remember CENTS.

Control
Entry
Need
Time
Scale

Entry is relatively easy in this area.

Need... well, I guess you'll have to see how different and desirable the jeans you are making actually are.

Keep at it, but don't be disheartened if this doesn't work out. You probably aren't starting off on the strongest foot here. If you are, congratulations :)

You figured something out that few people can!

The best thing about your post is that you're taking action. Something most people don't do. Drill into your head the CENTS model and try to deliver on that in the future if this doesn't work.

Best wishes.
Thank you, i will re-read the cents concept and write it down or something to make sure im following the model. I will try to build up this clothing line, and if i fail, i can start something else with a little more experience. Ive read some threads about online marketing businesses, i dont really understand that much of it, but looks like a good amount of people make a good amount of money from it, since it is so easy to automate. But for me it was the easiest to start with a clothing line, i know, i should go the hard way, but im doing the clothing business first.
 

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MitchM

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Thank you, i will re-read the cents concept and write it down or something to make sure im following the model. I will try to build up this clothing line, and if i fail, i can start something else with a little more experience. Ive read some threads about online marketing businesses, i dont really understand that much of it, but looks like a good amount of people make a good amount of money from it, since it is so easy to automate. But for me it was the easiest to start with a clothing line, i know, i should go the hard way, but im doing the clothing business first.
Sounds good!

Yeah, I pointed out the marketing thing because often marketing first becomes manipulation. Product first with strong marketing is just conversion.

Focus on a great product or service and then worry about marketing. That is basically all I mean to say.
 

Ali Abbasi

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Hello people, now that i have finished TMF , and im halfway trough Unscripted , i have started a business/ my own clothing brand. Yes i thought it would be a good idea, because i've always had trouble finding jeans with a good fit and design that stands out from the crowd.

I got a tech-pack done and have a manufacturer in italy who is creating my first sample at the moment. This takes a minimum of 6-weeks. And then the production of my 100 pieces for starting up. 6-weeks…

I have someone who is working on creating a clean website with a webshop for my brand, so everything is ready for when the big order from italy arrives.

But im wondering if its worth it??
Is there someone who have tried something similar? Because its kinda expensive since im manufacturing in italy, but i want the best quality for my product.

Best regards Fabia
Hello people, now that i have finished TMF , and im halfway trough Unscripted , i have started a business/ my own clothing brand. Yes i thought it would be a good idea, because i've always had trouble finding jeans with a good fit and design that stands out from the crowd.

I got a tech-pack done and have a manufacturer in italy who is creating my first sample at the moment. This takes a minimum of 6-weeks. And then the production of my 100 pieces for starting up. 6-weeks…

I have someone who is working on creating a clean website with a webshop for my brand, so everything is ready for when the big order from italy arrives.

But im wondering if its worth it??
Is there someone who have tried something similar? Because its kinda expensive since im manufacturing in italy, but i want the best quality for my product.

Best regards Fabian
I haven’t tried fashion but I think you’re smart to go with the manufacturing in Italy. Italy is a brand in itself. That already puts your brands as perceived in higher value obviously.

But the fashion industry is super competitive and the only ones that rise above the others is those that have influencer endorsement.

Fubu didn’t blow up until LL Cool J was wearing it.

If you can leverage mainstream influencers, which is easier nowadays, it’s a go but I think without major online influencers on board from the jump it’s going to be a long hard road to get traction in that fickle fashion industry.

But I love the story of how Tommy Hilfiger blew up. He put a billboard in Times Square where it said “The top 4 American fashion brands” or something like that and it had the big names with blanks like it would say:

1.) C__vin _K__n

and so on and he put himself as number 4 even though at this point Tommy was unknown a nobody in fashion . But he put himself out there with that perception that he was on par with Klein and Ellis and the public just believed it. And that’s how Hilfiger blew up!

Wild.
Hope that helps. Good luck to you bro!
 
Last edited:

mr4ffe

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You could niche your business. Instead of general clothes, you could make something like plus size designer clothes, or tactical techwear for women. You know who's entering the workforce more and more? Muslim women. Why not make workwear for that demographic?
 

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