So, you want to create a clothing collection but how many items should you make? The golden question is how much is too little and how much is too much? We’re here to help you answer this!
There really isn’t an exact number we can give you, as it really depends on your collection and your business situation. However, the main question we ask most of our clients is how much can you afford? The main priority is having enough stock so you need all the money you can afford. It’s better to have too much stock than to sell out, as it takes time to make new clothing. If you have any excess stock you can always put them on sale. This is much better than customers not being able to order as you’re still at the disposable stage, which means customers will not hesitate to purchase elsewhere.
Consider Your Target Market
Analysis of your target market is crucial to identify not only your potential customers’ habits and behaviours but also your business identity. For instance, if you’re making a clothing collection for children you must consider the nature of the kids market. Children are constantly growing and so need bigger clothes more regularly, which means you need enough stock in a range of sizes. You need to consider not only how much stock to make in total but how many different sizes you will provide. Perhaps certain sizes require more stock depending on your target market.
When it comes to sizing, we love working with companies that consider all sizes, not just ordering XS, S and M, but ordering XS, L, XL and XXL. This doesn’t mean you have to stock the same amount in each size; you can decide which sizes will be more popular than others for your target market. Generally speaking, a medium is the most popular size followed by small, large, extra-large and then extra small.
Trend research into popular colours is also important. This is because certain colours may be more popular with certain target markets, meaning you may need more stock in one colour compared to another. Let’s take the example of a kid’s clothing collection again; most children are attracted to bright colours, so designing a whole collection in black might not sell very well. If you’re not sure which colours will be more popular amongst your target market, then it’s best to stock more in the most ‘generic’ colour that is versatile and can be easily paired with other garments.
This goes hand in hand with the season you’re wanting to launch your collection in as well. You have to think ahead here because when making a collection for summer, you will most likely be designing and creating it in winter. So, you need to be careful when carrying out trend research as you want to focus on what is forecasted to hit the market, more than what’s currently out there on the market.
What Is Likely To Sell Out?
Another question commonly asked is how do you know what will sell out? It may sound simple but one way to tell is to look at your garments or designs and ask yourself which ones are you really excited about? These should then be the focal point of your collection and the other pieces created should complement them. One thing to note here is the difference between the number of pieces and styles. For example, you can have 3 styles in 3 different colours which gives you a total of 9 pieces. At a minimum we suggest having 3 different styles in each collection.
Currently, we’re creating a fashion collection for a client and we suggested to use similar fabrics for a few different pieces in their collection. This allows them to order less pieces in total, since we are combining the fabrics and colours and spreading them across sports bras, leggings and t-shirts. This means that the client doesn’t have to over-order, so instead of ordering 300 pcs per colour per style, they can order 200 pcs per colour per design.
Versatility Is Key
The best collections are those that are versatile. You should be able to pair different items together to create complete outfits, which encourages people to make multiple purchases. But bear in mind that the collection must still be cohesive and there needs to be a consistent image to increase your brand recognition. It can be very easy to get carried away with so many different designs and ideas but being selective is best at the start.
Creating a clothing collection for the very first time can seem daunting but we’re here to help. If you need more advice on stock levels or anything else related to designing and manufacturing a collection contact us by clicking here.