To start a clothing line, develop designs and create prototype pieces. Write a business plan that includes manufacturing and material costs, and use it to secure startup finding. Then, manufacture, market and sell the pieces in your clothing line.
- Create designs and sample pieces
Design the pieces of clothing that are to be a part of your line. Sew or samples of each design yourself, or hire a professional to make them. Ensure that each piece is manufactured to a high standard.
- Find a manufacturer and fabric source
Bring your samples to manufacturing companies, either in person or by mail, and secure a production quote. Ask for quotes for different-sized production runs. Find a fabric source that can provide the quality and quantity you need, and ask for quotes for the same production run sizes.
- Write a business plan
Write a business plan that incorporates material costs, design information, market research, marketing plans and manufacturing costs. Include projections for each year up to five or 10 years to demonstrate scalability.
- Find funding
Use your business plan and clothing samples to secure funding for your clothing line. The funding should cover your salary, manufacturing costs and overhead costs, at a minimum. Aim for a larger amount to cover unexpected costs. Two potential sources are small business loans and crowdfunding.
- Manufacture your designs
Place an order for your first clothing production run. Check each piece for quality.
- Market and sell your products
Sell your products on your own using a personal website or a service like Etsy. Alternatively, sell your pieces at craft fairs, or sell them through retail outlets for a commission. Market your products heavily on social media, online ads, print ads and by word-of-mouth.