Feeling so proud at this moment. Blue Candies by Charlene Kimber has been featured in an article by online magazine Cincy Chic. I can’t believe it. Yet another stepping stone on my journey. Check out the article link below. Vogue Magazine Here I Come!
Retailers are typically required to obtain special licenses to sell trademarked or brand-name clothing. Licensing agreements vary by brand and company. Some brands require retailers to execute licensing agreements limiting them from marking down or marking up their merchandise. Furthermore, some brands prohibit retailers from selling merchandise made by competitors. A retailer interested in carrying brand-name clothing must contact each company directly, comply with a company’s licensing requirements, sign a written agreement outlining its legal duties as an authorized retailer and agree upon a share of profits or royalties.
Find the brand-name company owner’s address. You need the corporate address so that you can send a written licensing agreement directly to the corporate headquarters. You also need to understand the domiciliary laws that the corporatation must comply with. You can find this information by conducting a Dun & Bradstreet search or by contacting a state’s secretary of state office. You need to know the company’s home location or state of corporate domicile, which you can determine by looking at the company’s public filings or initial registration.
Search the company’s U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) public filings. The SEC requires annual disclosures of publicly traded companies. Most brand-name clothing owners have offered their stocks for public purchase. You can use the electronic EDGAR database located on the SEC’s website to determine the corporation’s net worth and review whether the corporation’s trademark is financially viable. Have a certified public accountant review the corporation’s earnings statements.
Send a request for proposal or request for additional information to the brand-name clothing company that you are interested in selling clothing for. Most large brand-name companies offer information on becoming licensed to sell their clothing brands. Mail your proposal package directly to the corporation or, if the company allows, submit it electronically.
Review the company’s website. Most companies list additional information on their public websites. A company’s additional information may include the initial investment required, no-compete clauses and minimum purchasing requirements.
Find an attorney to draft your licensing agreement. Your attorney should have specialized expertise in dealing with contract issues, business ownership issues and intellectual property rights. Many companies also use standard licensing agreements prepared by corporate counsel. If this is the case, you need your own attorney to review the written licensing agreement. You may want to add language or tailor it to your specific situation.
Comply with the federal registration requirements required by the Federal Trade Commission in registering your apparel.
You may consider self-manufacturing the clothing before affixing the brand-name retailer’s label, logo or insignia, instead of licensing clothing already made by other manufacturers. By manufacturing your own clothing, you may be able to keep more of your profits and avoid the pitfalls of securing an adequate supply of merchandise from distributors.
The Federal Trade Commission issues a Registered Identification Number to all domestic companies that sell apparel covered by the federal Textile, Wool and Fur Act. You may have to apply for an RN.
If you fancy embarking on a career as a fashion designer but don’t want to spend three to four years at college before doing so, you’ll be pleased to learn that a degree is not required to break into the profession, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (See Reference 1). If you’ve got enough raw talent and have picked up the basic skills necessary to secure an entry-level position in the fashion industry, there’s a good chance you’ll be able to make it without a bachelor’s or associate’s degree.
Assess whether you have the right qualities and skills to make it as a fashion designer. You’ll need be creative, be detail-oriented and be able to illustrate your ideas. As many fashion designers use computer-aided design software as part of their work, such as packages from developers including Optitex, C-Design and TukaTech, you’ll also need to be compute literate.
Graduate from high school. Although you may not want to complete a bachelor’s or associate’s program in fashion design or a related subject, you could make yourself more attractive to potential employers if you have certificates or non-degree qualifications in relevant areas. You may need a high school diploma or the equivalent to be considered for even the most basic of entry-level jobs. While at high school, study art-related subjects and information technology to pick up computer skills.
Attend textiles courses at your high school if they’re available. If not, spend time in your city’s fabric district or at local fabric stores. Making a swatch book using scraps of fabric collected from tailors and fabric shops will also be a productive use of your time.
Start building up a portfolio of your ideas and designs. Developing a collection of your work from early on in your career will be vital. You’ll need this to demonstrate your style and ability to potential employers.
Learn to sew from books and magazines if you’re dead against going to college. You can pick up titles in bookstores or online. If money’s a bit tight, sniff out some secondhand books on advanced sewing and fabric manipulation techniques. Many books have been published on fashion-design related skills over the years, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble tracking down some useful reading materials.
Enter your designs into sewing competitions and fashion design contests such as those held by organizations such as the American Sewing Guild and Inspirare. As well as helping you hone your skills, doing well in contests such as these will add to your resume.
Apply for internships with design or manufacturing firms. If you need to work part-time while you study or before you manage to land an entry-level fashion design role, get a job working as a personal stylist in a retail store. This will help you gain “sales and marketing skills while learning what styles and fabrics look good on different people,” according to careers site ArtsBistro.
Send speculative applications to companies you’d like to work for. Many fashion designers start their careers working as patternmakers or sketching assistants, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Once you’ve built up some experience, contacts and your portfolio, start applying for design positions.
Blue Candies “Modern Hip Sexy”
One question that I am often asked by emerging designers in the very early stages of business is: “what’s the difference between a lookbook and a line sheet?” The other question is: “when do I use each one?”
A lookbook is a way to showcase your brand in its own element by portraying the overall “feel”.
Through a collection of well-styled editorial images the story of your brand is told. When creating a lookbook never skimp on working with professional models, stylists, and photographers as these images often make the first impression before an editor or buyer even sees the collection in person.
While lookbooks give you the feel, line sheets give you the facts.
Line sheets are a wealth of information for buyers and contain style names, season, wholesale prices, size runs, colors/patterns available, materials and suggested markup prices.
Line sheets also include visuals such as a silhouette sketch or image of the merchandise on a white background and fabric swatches. And be sure to make a note of when the line sheet information expires.
Here’s more info on what goes into a line sheet.
Some brands combine their lookbook and line sheets into one with styled images on one side of a page and information on the other, though it’s usually best to keep them completely separate.
Regardless of how you plan to design these two elements, both are of equal importance. I suggest having both a physical and digital copy of each one, making it seemless when an editor or buyer emails you requesting information fast.
And remember, be creative and consistent with all branded materials.