Maker’s Row Live: Are You Ready to Reach Out to Factories?

Maker’s Row Live is back! Every episode we sit down with leaders in business, manufacturing, and fashion to hear their journeys. Along the way they give real advice on starting and scaling businesses, and even answer viewers questions live.

Last week we had the pleasure of sitting with Anna Livermore. She founded V. Mora in 2008 out of a passion for helping new and emerging artists and designers. V.Mora is a fashion business and production consulting company that brings your dream to life. The NYC and Chicago team can guide you, manage your process, or coach you from idea through manufacture.

How to Prepare For a Factory Visit

Check Out the Full Interview!

Top Tips: Are You Ready to Start Reaching Out to Manufacturers? 

Setting a strong foundation is critical before contacting factories. Getting educated, setting a realistic budget and timeline, and a business plan are some important elements. This will help you when you need to start sourcing, reaching out to factories and ordering.

Budget

  • New designers underestimate the cost, thinking “I’ll come up with the money” or “I’ll figure it out later.”
  • Be honest about the amount of money you have and what you are able to spend on. There are thing you can splurge on and things that you can save on. Get the number for the factory estimates and build your costs around it.

Timeline

  • New designers underestimate the amount of time it’s going to take because they don’t necessarily know all the steps that are involved.
  • Take a course, read as much as you can, get a mentor – all ways to become more aware of what’s involved.

Design

  • How do you know you’re ready to reach out to factories? You should at least have a tech pack, swatches of your fabric, and preferably a perfect sample.
  • After you get an idea, start getting your tech pack together. Get fabric sourced, get a picture thats close enough to what you are trying to create. That’s what you’ll need to reach out for that first interaction of getting an estimate.  Also, know an idea around your production quantity – will you be ordering small or large quantities.
  • Typically expect 3 iterations/samples if fit is really important or if you are creating a line for a nonstandard size run.

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