Have you been thinking of starting your own fashion business, but you do not know how to start a clothing line? Well, this is your chance to do what you want because we have curated a guide for you to teach you how to start a clothing line with no money. So, if you love clothes and have an eye for design, then keep on reading and by the end of our guide you will be ready to start a business:
Consider the Essentials Before Starting a Clothing Line
Before you start envisioning a super successful fashion clothing line you need to bring some factors under consideration:
Research the Fashion Industry
Fashion is not limited to just one single thing, and it keeps changing all the time. So, before you even start designing your clothes or choose a specific line of clothes to work on, get a clear point of view to create something different and stand out from the clutter to sell your products like fire.
Do you want to start a business that offers repair services, or you want to start a custom printing business that delivers t-shirts in less than 48 hours? You must research to see what is already out there in the market, so you know what to offer.
Your Role Within the Industry
Ask yourself if you are willing to put in hard work in all the aspects involved in setting up a clothing line. Whether you want to do it full time or just start a side hustle it is always preferable to have some experience in several different areas such as manufacturing, accounting, finance, logistics, marketing, and retail and knowledge of locating the gaps in your service and ask for help. This will really set the tone and set apart a successful business from a passion project.
Identify Your Target Audience
Make sure to think about the audience that would like to wear and buy your clothes. Even if you want to target the audience around your age group you still need to be able to answer the queries about your customer persona. If your answers are right only then you will be able to inform your audience about your brand identity, the marketing strategy, and pricing models.
Take a look at your targeted customer demographic and find out where your audience is located, their age, the gender they identify with, and their income to decide your business plan. Once you have done that you need to look at their behaviour, including how do they shop for clothes and what influences their decision, do they buy anything else when buying clothes and when do they make the purchases. All these facts will help you come up with a flawless plan.
Develop a Unique Brand
In order to come up with a unique brand, you need to articulate your values to make your clothes desirable and build your brand awareness and recognition over time. Some of the most cherished brand values are social, activist, intrinsic pertaining to inclusivity, the quality of your products, and other practical values.
The most successful clothing brands have a key set of values that they follow to communicate and connect with their clients about their clothing design and brand identity. A successful brand identity consists of elements, such as making it memorable for your customers and making sure that no other brand is using it. You can use an Australian search engine to make sure that no other business has a trademark similar to that of yours. It is also important to make sure that the domain name you have chosen has not been used before and also note if the logo and symbols resonate with your brand’s values. Make your logo unique and easy to see whether it consists of shapes or texts
Select a colour theme and keep it consistent throughout your marketing and website materials. Learn colour psychology to see what colour suits your brand the best, such as deep blue resonates with trust.
Finally, choose a style and keywords to set a tone of voice to inform your customer about your brand story.
Design Your Clothing Line
Now comes the most important part of starting a clothing line from home i.e., to learn how to design clothes and make your brand identity reflect in your designs. Consider textures, colour combinations, and shapes when coming up with designs. If you do not want to play with mannequins and experiment with different types of fabric for your first launch then stick to basics such as A-line skirts or straight silhouettes made with denim.
Establish Your Operations
You can use different models to produce your own clothing line and sell it successfully. The easiest option for you to try is the print on demand whereby you print your designs on standard blank apparel. It is a good choice for you if you have a low budget, but its drawback lies in its lower profit margins.
The second method is the private or wholesale label clothing line in which you buy clothing products from other people and sell them from your store. You buy clothes in bulk at a discounted price and then sell them at higher prices. There is one major drawback – it does not let you customise your products.
The last option is the custom cut and sew clothes which involves doing everything from the sketches to the manufacturing of the products. It has the potential to increase your profit margins but also costs a lot and takes a lot of time.
Research Manufacturing Options
Regardless of how you decide to manufacture your products, do not forget to research your options and look into potential suppliers and their facilities. Plan your schedule ahead of time and be patient because it can take a lot of time based on the seasonal calendar and your launch plan. It is a nice option to ask the manufacturer to show you samples before going forward with mass production.
Decide a Sale Channel
So, have you decided how you will sell your products? You will need shipping and warehouse capacity even if you make a website. You can deal with the complexities of shipping if you have a large space, or you can resort to a third party pick-and-pack supplier. If you want to make a brick-and-mortar store, then you will need a good location and commercial rental landscape.
Finance Your Fashion Business
Once you’ve learned how to start a clothing business and have decided on a sale channel you can estimate the costs. Here is how can determine your business’s financing approach:
- Costing: Cost your products including raw products, finishing, and packaging. Do not overlook even the smallest of details.
- Determine your fixed costs: Identify the costs you will have to deal with such as store rent, insurance, website fees, and warehousing etc.
- Price your products: Bear in mind that when you price your products you must consider the cost of production, what your competing brands are offering, how much your targeted audience can pay, and your margin to earn some profit.
- Source funding: Look at the savings you have and if they are enough for launching a clothing line. If you identify a gap, you can ask your friends or a bank to borrow some money.
Come up With a Marketing Strategy
Follow our guide below to come up with an effective marketing strategy:
- Develop your goals
- Know your target market
- Perform a competitive analysis
- Formulate a unique selling proposition
- Come up with a pricing strategy
- Select marketing channels
- Design your marketing budget
Follow these steps and everything will flow easily.
Get Ready for Sales
When you have done all the above-mentioned steps now you just have to make sure your website can accept payments
- You can opt for Square Online Store if you have made an online store to accept payments and enjoy both inventory management and Instagram integration. You can also make a checkout link in your existing site.
- For a physical store, you can customise the Square Point of Sale or Square Reader and Square Terminal to accept card payments along with cash. Besides, you can monitor your sales and customise stuff such as discounts.
- Lastly, if you are selling clothes online you can use Square Payments to make hardware and software solution your brand needs, including making invoices and accepting payments via mobile phones.
Starting a clothing line from home and from scratch is not everyone’s cup of tea, but there is nothing like the satisfaction you get once you make something of your own. So follow these steps, be patient and bring your design to the market. And do not panic, just take a deep breath because you have got this.