Cutting the pattern, the ‘saving money’ issue

Hi guys!

I have been calculating on the final Retail Prices (on my 2012 garments) since the Sampling Process is pretty much behind me now. As the bill from my Dressmaker came, cutting the fabric according to the pattern is almost a staggering 50% of the entire cost. Since I’ve found it hard to provide any good mark-ups for the stores without sky-high garment prices I have been trying to get the cost down both on fabrics and trims/detailing and other areas such as labor cost. Of course making the garments over-seas in countries like Vietnam and India would reduce that heavily but this time around I wanted to have the production closer to home to better over-see it along with smaller quantities to avoid gambling too much with big numbers and bigger budgets. So, I’ve come to terms with the Dressmakers hourly cost and making the clothes here in New Zealand but there had to be something I could cut cost on?

I asked the Dressmaker about me cutting the fabric if I could get the patterns and then stock the fabric in my ‘little sewing room’. She gave me a thumbs up and almost seemed a bit relived about the fact that I took the role of official fabric cutter. Not knowing what I’ve gotten myself into I started cutting the pieces two days ago. As I struggled on the first garment I kept telling myself how much cost I would be saving per piece and after finishing and handing it all in yesterday I felt a sense of pride that I’ve been a part of the physical process rather then being stuck sketching and then putting most effort in to branding and marketing. Yes, it felt good. Another great reason to cut your own fabric is the freedom of playing around with colors, materials and contrasts. I found myself changing and tweaking the garments as I went along and 5 pieces later I came to the realization that this was best thing I have done in a long time. “With that said, the Dressmaker haven’t started stitching it all together and by the end of next week (fingers crossed) I won’t get a frustrated phone call about the bad cuttings I’ve made…”

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