What You Should Ask a Lingerie Manufacturer
Having your lingerie sample and design ready to go is just the beginning of the long and often arduous process of developing a lingerie line. The difficult part for most new designers is finding the right lingerie manufacturer that fits their needs. Considering that underwear manufacturing is a more specialized area of garment manufacturing, it’s essential you partner with someone who knows the ins and outs of the lingerie industry.
In order to do that, you need to run some crucial questions by your potential manufacturers before settling on one.
What Are Their Lead Times?
When sourcing a lingerie manufacturer, make sure to inquire about their lead times. The lead time is essentially the time the manufacturer will take to produce your garments. Of course, different factories will have different schedules and hence different lead times. You’ll need to inquire about what their booking schedule looks like because many manufacturers tend to be booked up to a whole year in advance.
You need to also bear in mind that garment manufacturing is often a complicated process. You may find problems with the lingerie items at the last minute. This will delay the production process. Knowing the manufacturer’s lead time beforehand will help you prepare and schedule things better.
What Are Their Minimums?
This is the minimum number of units of a particular product in one style that the manufacturer is willing to produce. You will find that overseas manufacturers tend to have higher minimum orders at a lower cost. A factory closer to home will likely have a lower minimum order at a higher cost.Assess your finances and figure out which option will be more cost-effective.You need to keep in mind that a higher minimum means more fabric, longer time for quality control, and increased shipping costs due to the increased weight and space.
Where Are They Based?
A factory that’s closer to you will offer you more control in terms of communication and visits. You can assess the factory’s working conditions, the workmanship, and the quality of the lingerie they produce.However, that doesn’t mean you can’t build a fruitful working relationship with an overseas lingerie manufacturer. The most important factor to consider is the factory itself and their reputation.
What Are Their Terms and Conditions?
Before you place an order with a lingerie manufacturer, you need to assess their terms and conditions. What this means, is the following:
Sampling: Is the price for sample-making included in your bill? What if you find an issue with a sample and need another one made? Who will be paying for it? If you end up dissatisfied with the manufacturer’s work and decide to pull production, who will own the rights to the sample?
Pricing: You need to be thorough when it comes to inquiring about the lingerie manufacturer’s pricing. Does their pricing include grading, tech packs, or is it limited to just manufacturing? What exactly are their payment terms? Are they willing to provide credit?
Shipping: Does the manufacturer handle shipping? If yes, does their pricing include it? You’ll find that many lingerie manufacturers tend to expect you to handle the shipping yourself. This is especially the case when it involves taxes and import duties.
Maintain a Steady Line of Communication
One of the most important things you need to do, no matter which manufacturer you end up choosing is to maintain a steady line of communication. Before you place your order, make sure to voice any and all concerns. See if they understand your needs and are willing to do as you ask.Build a strong relationship with the manufacturer by understanding and respecting their culture (if it is an overseas manufacturer).
Consider attending some trade shows because they allow you the opportunity to speak to people involved in the business. You can meet a reputable lingerie manufacturer face to face and build a better relationship.
Whether you’re an industry stalwart looking to make a change, or have recently started a lingerie designing business, partnering with a reputable and experienced lingerie manufacturer will help you develop an edge over stiff competition.
At Lefty Production Co. we understand and prioritize style, comfort, and inclusivity when it comes to lingerie. Everyone deserves to be comfortable in their underwear, hence, our garment manufacturing services help clients design and produce lingerie for all shapes and sizes so your customers will be confident wearing your products!
We are a premium garment production company based in Los Angeles and have worked with numerous retailers, fashion brands,studios, and designers all over the world. For unlimited fabric sourcing options and beautiful trim choices for your lingerie line, Lefty is your one-stop solution. Get in touch with us today to learn more about our services or call us at +1(323)515-9266.