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Starting a clothing business is a very personal journey.You’re probably a creative person, with something different to offer in a fast-moving industry.Watch out though, if your idea takes off you’ll want to scale pretty quickly, so it makes sense to keep even a rough plan in the background.
Are you planning to build a fanbase for one specific item, like the world-famous Fred Perry shirt?
Or it could be a particular style that you have in mind for your clothing line – for example the pared back, design-focused children’s products sold by lifestyle brand Scandiborn, or menswear that nods to your own unique heritage?
It can’t just be your personal view of what’s wrong with the current market options (although there’s a place for this too!
) Your plan should also outline who’s involved in your business and what they do, whether it’s just you, or you’re working with anyone else.
It’s likely that you’ve spotted a gap in the market, or have a unique design in mind for a specific customer group.
Whatever your inspiration for starting up, it’s important to define your niche from the out-set.You’ll need to leave room for the product(s), of course, and talk about any plans you have for branding, sales and marketing, as well as operations.Finally, whoever’s reading your plan will be most concerned with one thing, and that’s the money.It’ll need to include your product’s details and technical specifications, from design and measurements to materials and any extra accessories or features.From there, you’ll need to get started on pattern making and grading, ahead of sourcing your manufacturer.You’ll also need to include the analysis you’ve done, to understand your target market and any competitors.Remember, this does need to be data-oriented, concrete and preferably something you’ve done with external sources.As a fashion or clothing pro, you’re likely to be creative.And this will stand you in good stead for developing a brand for your startup clothing company.Starting with one design which you love, know how to manufacture (or buy) and have had great feedback on may be much easier than launching with a lengthy product catalogue.It helps to have a fixed figure in mind, and decide how you’re going to spend your funding, along with what you want to achieve.