Refashioning a Clothing Business

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From our launch in November 2018, we've learned a great deal about the business of clothing and the importance of fit, choice of fabric and order quantities.

For our first few styles, what we thought as good quality weighted fabric turned out to be too warm for our tropical climate. 

The arm sizing for the end sizes (i.e. Size 0 and Size 8) turned out to be either too tight or too loose fitting. 

Being enthusiastic first time clothing makers, we were also overly optimistic about our selling abilities and agreed to higher minimum quantities. 

As time went by, we got a better grasp of customer preferences and that definitely helped us manage our supply.

Just when we thought we got the hang of it, we took delivery of twice the quantity of a single style we ordered simply because the factory didn't tell us in advance that they had to use up all the ordered fabric. 

All of the above instances definitely point to the dreaded words - "Excess Inventory"

Conventional liquidation strategies include selling them at bulk wholesale prices or at a deeply discounted retail price or simply recognizing them as dead stock that will eventually find their way to landfills.

Here at SOTP, we concur with Annie Leonard, an American proponent of sustainability and a critic of consumerism. She is also the Executive Director of Greenpeace USA, the United States affiliate of an international environmental nonprofit organization.

"There is no such thing as "away". When we throw anything away it must go somewhere." - Annie Leonard 

The word, repurpose came to mind.

How can we "salvage" these perfectly good pieces of clothing and make them desirable to either the same or difference audience by altering its style and aesthetic?

Refashion we did.

Experiment 1:

The Existing Style:

Alexa, the Wrap Knit Dress 

The Issue(s):

Long sleeve dresses are not too popular with the local community

The fabric is too weighted i.e. thick for the tropical climate 

The Solution:

Using its "flaw" as its strength, our designer, Eelyn thought it would be make a good lightweight cardigan / outerwear piece that one can just throw on to dress up any outfit OR to warm up any sleeveless situation.

The Result:

An extremely wearable piece that complements an outfit with a short or long hem. 

Great for elevating the style of our air-conditioned nation citizens who can then dress casual and have this piece on standby for warmth or a stylish overcoat. 

Its New Name: 

Ali

 

Experiment 2:

The Existing Style:

Blake, the Classic Blazer 

The Issue(s): 

The sleeves on the end sizes were either too small or too wide. We had great feedback on the blazer quality and decided to...

The Solution:

Retain its core i.e. the central portion of the style and focused on making it a vest that can fit more people. 

The Result:

A stylish vest piece that can be worn over almost any outfit. We like to bring it around the world when it opens up. The fabric does not crease easily which makes it ideal to have in your carry on or draped on you. 

Its New Name: 

Victoria 

 

Experiment 3:

The Existing Style:

Olivia, the cropped pants 

The Issue(s):

Our factory made too much and we had to accept all of them. 

The Solution:

Embrace what it is known for. It's super comfortable fabric would work at any length and with this WFM situation not going anywhere, we decided to shorten it. 

The Result:

 A perfect pair of shorts. Extremely comfortable and easy to wear and pair.

Its New Name: 

Ollie 

 

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