Wednesday, 21 March 2018

Sewport - Bringing Fashion Designs To Market

Have you ever dreamed of having your own clothing business? Well, today on my blog I am interviewing Boris Hodakel from Sewport.

Sewport is a site that connects brands with clothing manufacturers. When I say brands, that brand though could be you, it could be your startup company, and it could be a way of getting your dreams realised. If you have a fashion idea you could turn it into a fashion business with Sewport. That is what makes it an interesting company to fashion designers everywhere. So over to Boris...



Can you tell me about Sewport, what makes the company unique?

How about starting a clothing brand without connections and deep knowledge of the process by just going online and finding everything nicely aligned in one place, does that sound like something new?

The modern digitisation trend is all around us, and fashion technology is not an exception. Clothing manufacturing goes way back; I think there were records of the first bone needles from 30 000 BC, so making garments is not a new concept. However, the way things are done and the technology behind this changes all the time, like we see sportswear and trainers being produced by 3D printed equipment or tubular knit technologies when the only step a human is involved in, is the design process and pushing the “start button” launches production.

Sewport is revolutionising and modernising the way brands and clothing manufacturers interact, by providing algorithms, tools to simplify and improve communication resulting in a streamlined process of garment production.

Our online platform bridges the gap between old age garment manufacturing and progressive forward thinking young and upcoming brands looking for clothes production online.

We understand the problems of both the brands and manufacturers first hand, our team has a deep understanding of the industry and how to make it more accessible to anybody. For we are not just some enthusiasts but a team of knowledgeable people who worked closely with an array of manufacturing companies (such as sampling studios, garment printing companies, fabric mills, trims suppliers etc.) for years when launching hundreds of different start-up clothing brands projects without the platform we now created to automate this.

Who is your average customer and why do they come to you?





Typically, the category is very general. Many of us at some point in our lives have thought about starting a clothing brand. Contrary to what most might believe, the percentage of male and female customers are almost equal, so fashion newcomers are not just women with dress ideas. Mainly aged 25-50, be it a hobby project, a lifelong dream, or a way to escape the 9 to 5 corporate job we have very different customers with truly diverse ideas that are looking for a place where everything can be taken care of - a one-stop-shop.

What does the customer need to bring to you so you can start the production process?




We always say, “It all starts with an Idea” so the customer seeking clothing manufacturing companies on our platform at least has to have a dream design in mind. Most have much more than that but if it’s just a vague idea there are designers and freelance specialists who can help finalize the idea to a technical sketch or even a Tech Pack.

What are the main stages of production?



Complete the prototype (technical designs, tech pack) -> Approve the sample (cut patterns for the style and make a physical sample) -> Grade to other sizes (if the fit is right, it is graded to other required sizes)-> Prepare all fabric and trims for production (calculate how much fabric, trims will be required for the X amount of garments the customer needs) -> Start bulk production

How long does the manufacturing process take?





This is a very common and straightforward question! A lot of customers ask this, and honestly, the answer will differ from clothing manufacturer to clothing manufacturer. Why? Simply because there are a lot of factors involved. In most cases, the completion of a production run involves the work of more than one company and always more than one department. Whenever you want a custom, not “off the shelf” product it will take time.

In part, because a lot of this depends on the customer. How fast can the customer approve the prototype? When will the fabric and trims arrive if these are supplied? Are there any last-minute changes?

On the manufacturers' side: what is the quantity of the order, what sort of garment is required to be produced, how busy is the season at the scheduled production run slot time, how many people the factory can allocate to that specific production slot.

People need to bear in mind and consider when they want a quick yet accurate answer.

Having firm answers, definite information and being decisive when dealing with bulk production companies will ensure a shorter lead time.

In ideal conditions, it usually takes 1-3 weeks for a clothing factory on average to produce a sample or prototype. If it is a Sampling Studio or Atelier the lead time can range from a couple of days to a couple of weeks because they are more tailored to one-offs and small runs. Then for production of say 200-1000 items, it would usually take 4-6 weeks. European based factories and service providing companies on average will have a shorter lead time than manufacturers from the far east but the latter will not take on small runs. Again, this is just in general and does not determine the lead time for a specific company the Brand chooses to work with.

Do you have anything else to add?





Never move based on assumptions as the industry may be new to you, move on guided information. Starting and running a clothing brand is just like starting and running any business. Have a plan, have a budget.


Thanks to Boris for answering my questions! What do you think of a service like Sewport?

*PR collaboration
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7 comments

  1. Sewing is a craft or hobby I always wanted to learn but never had the time. Maybe when the kids are a bit bigger!

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  2. I see a lot of people are designing their own clothes now to sell, this would make your clothes unique and there would be nothing like it on the shop shelves. This is a good service.

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  3. Oh wow! What a great concept, and such a perfect way for any budding fashion designers, to get their stuff out into the world! :) I really hope in the future, that the market becomes dominated by independent designers, creators and businesses - rather than the big corporations! xx

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  4. What a great idea! It's so hard to know where to begin when you have an idea for a product, so a service like this will be really helpful.

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  5. I have always loved sewing and I am fascinated by this whole process. Its sad that so many fabric shops are all closing down.

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  6. I love the sound of this, it sounds like such a great service. I think everyone would love to design their own range!

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  7. I can't sew to save my life. MY grandma use to sew and make us all clothes when we were younger, it was some of my best memories.

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