Hi Fashion Insiders team, I am based in the UK. Where do you recommend I get my first proto sample made?
~ Isaak – Manchester, UK
If you are new to the fashion industry and this would be the first proto sample to make from your idea, then the best place would be to keep the initial development close to home – i.e. within the UK. In this way, you can be more involved and learn the basics while making your first proto sample.
Try to find a sampling studio that would be open to helping you learn while also developing your idea. Learning the development process from idea to finished product will help you long term if you are thinking of launching your own brand or developing another idea in the future.
Be sure to speak to a few different studios and learn how they work, what they specialise in, what they require from you before you start and how they charge prior to deciding who to go forward with.
Related reading: What to Ask a Factory Before you Decide to Work With Them
If you are more experienced and confident, then choosing where to make your first proto sample would be based on what you would like to have made, the price you’re hoping to achieve and your plans post sampling.
If you plan to proceed and sample with the view of doing production, perhaps the best would be to find a factory that can work with you on the idea form the very beginning. In this way, you will save on development costs as well as know by the end of it that your factory can deliver the products and your costing is accurate.
Related reading: Local or Offshore manufacturing: What is the right manufacturing location for your brand?