Camouflage clothing is popular with the military and sportsman sets, but also with those who love fashion. Always a good seller, camo clothes present a niche market opportunity for clothing designers. This tutorial explains some considerations and steps to take in creating a camouflage-based clothing line.
Obtain proper business licensing and tax I.D. information. These will be necessary to obtain materials at wholesale prices. At this time, it may also be advisable to create a corporate entity, such as an LLC, for taxation purposes. Consult the Resources for more information.
Decide on branding and demographics. A target market is necessary for proper design of the line. A collection of high-fashion womens' camoflage accessories will have a different target market than camo clothing for hunters. Once a focus has been selected, design and copyright all trademarks with the government.
Figure out how the line will be crafted. Will the garments be pre-made, or sewn from scratch? Each method of manufacture requires a very different set of tasks for development. Depending on the end use of the garments, the camouflage fabric may need to be a certain pattern or weave. Camouflage gear is one area where the end market is absolutely crucial.
Draw up a business plan to fund your line's development, taking into account manufacture, start-up costs and advertising. Consult the Resources section for helpful links for business plan writing. Also, pay special attention to the mission statement of the plan. Are these clothes for actual combat or field use, or are they crafted for fashion? For such a specialized type of clothing, it may be possible to get funding from niche sources.
Once funding has been secured, start designing the line. For camouflage, pay attention to the print size, color and weave. There are many fashion camouflage designs these days that look incredibly close to ones used for field work. There are also cutting-edge camouflage designs that are computer generated, similar to the fabrics used in today's military. Visit several textile suppliers to have the best assortment of options.
Create production samples for marketing and advertising purposes. This is the time to sell product. Show the garments at relevant trade shows and events to gauge reception. Doing this will also cast attention to pieces that will, potentially, be good or bad sellers.
Start producing and fulfilling orders. Always produce a bit extra for sale at sample sales and events to create extra cash. Follow your orders by contacting customers to hear about quality issues and other concerns. Good customer service will bring people back for new products and will keep new business coming in.
Gigi Starr is a freelance fashion writer. She previously served as the blog editor for a major online fashion blog and has more than a decade of backstage experience in the beauty and high fashion industries. She has worked for businesses like an internationally renowned theatrical touring company and events such as the Mercedes-Benz N.Y.C. Fashion Week.