Mentee’s Launch: The Feather Bird

Mentee’s Launch: The Feather Bird

Posted by on Jul 5, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Fashion, Fashion Design, Follow the Label, Mentee | 0 comments

Our Mentee: Felicity Barras owner of The Feather Bird After finding a gap in them market, our past mentee Felicity Barras designed a range of gorgeous gender neautral children’s wear. Here is more about Felicity’s new label ‘The Feather Bird’ and time spent as part of Sample Room’s Fashion Label Launch Pad Program. What is your range about? The Feather Bird is a Melbourne based gender neutral children’s clothing label offering a range of fun and playful basics that can be worn by all kids. We are passionate about gender equality and the importance of facilitating this in children from birth. We believe that allowing kids to wear and play with whatever they want is an important step towards creating a more equal future for our children. The idea for The Feather Bird came about after we identified a gap in the market. We noticed that gender neutral children’s clothing typically falls within one of two categories: ranges using whites, greys and earthy tones, and the other featuring bright patterned t-shirts with feminist slogans and prints. Both of which we love, but we hadn’t been able to find a range of high quality basics that are comfortable, practical and encourage all genders to wear bright pastels…so we decided to make them! Who is it for? Our first range covers sizes 0-4. Made from organic cotton, not only will our clothes look great and feel soft on your young ones skin, but they are also gentle on the environment. We hope to see many young boys rocking our pastel pink and purple garments!     What did you do for a career before you started your label? Before starting the label I was (and still am) an Occupational Therapist working in brain injury rehabilitation. I am currently on maternity leave from this position and launched The Feather Bird just in time before the baby’s impending arrival! What is the biggest thing you learnt whilst working through the development process? The biggest thing that I have learnt is that there is just so much involved in starting a fashion label, and that’s where Sample Room has been invaluable. They make sure that nothing is forgotten and walk you through each step of the process. There is definitely no way that I would have been able to develop a range and launch without the support and guidance from Sample Room. What would you do differently if you did it all over again? I think the main thing that I would do differently is to back myself a little more, and just be more confident in my ability to design, launch a range and bring my dream to life. I was lucky that I had the encouragement of Julia and the team at Sample Room backing me and making up for my lack of confidence!     How can people buy your product?...

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As of today, we are changing the fashion industry forever…

Posted by on Jun 6, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Established Designers, Fashion, Fashion Design, Industry Know How | 0 comments

  It has been five long years. PATTERNROOM.COM has been a dream of mine for a long time now. And there is a good reason why nobody has ever launched anything like Pattern Room before. Simply – it was hard. By no means have we been on an easy or smooth sailing road to lead us to launch Pattern Room today. I have lost count of how many servers we have moved to and then needed to upgrade once again, let alone website platforms that just couldn’t handle the mass that is Pattern Room. BUT we are there. PATTERNROOM.COM is live, housing 10,000’s of commercial-use-ready clothing patterns that myself and my team have individually designed, tested and perfected ensuring they fit a western size. We couldn’t be more proud of this feat. I really look forward to being able to facilitate new and established fashion labels to develop their range at a fraction of the cost of traditional methods. For some, this will change their business model completely. For others, it will mean they can actually follow their dreams and launch a fashion label that they thought they were unable to fund. PATTERNROOM.COM is allowing me to also feed an inner passion to do something that matters. Something that has a positive effect on the environment, protecting this planet we all live on. I know first hand how much fabric is wasted in creating toiles and samples for custom developed patterns. From the fabric used in the garment to the offcuts. It adds up. So thanks to PATTERNROOM.COM one pattern can be sampled and perfected and then used multiple times without the need to be resampled. Furthermore – garments created from our patterns will actually fit a western sized figure. Meaning, clothes are far less likely to be purchased and then discarded due to a bad fit. And labels are more likely to sell their full production, again decreasing what ends up in the landfill. The ethical clothing movement has grown considerably over the last couple of years. And as our patterns are created by our ethically accredited fashion development house, Sample Room, labels using Pattern Room patterns have the opportunity to obtain their accreditation. So what is PATTTERNROOM.COM really all about? Here’s the rundown: An online catalogue housing 10,000’s of clothing patterns Downloadable and available in DXF, AI and PDF 0-2 weeks lead time Paper and card patterns available Sample making available We have tried and tested the patterns for Western fit   One question I have been asked is whether there is an issue of other labels having the same pattern. Think about it this way; we have over 10,000 variations of a t-shirt pattern. So not taking into consideration your fabric and design choices, it is VERY unlikely you will be able to identify another company using the same pattern as you. So whether you are...

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9 Steps To Be Manufacturer Ready

9 Steps To Be Manufacturer Ready

Posted by on Apr 24, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Established Designers, Fashion, Fashion Design, Industry Know How, Manufacturer | 0 comments

Here at Sample Room, we have a number of meticulous steps in place to ensure the highest quality patterns and samples, ultimately providing you with the best chance to create the perfect garment with your manufacturer. Read on to see the 9 steps we take to ensure you are manufacturer ready and on your way to creating an amazing collection! 1. Design the style When we are creating patterns for our clients there are a variety of ways they communicate their design ideas. Some might come to us with sketches that have been developed by a graphic designer, others with physical examples. Communicating your design ideas can be challenging. In our Fashion Label Launchpad course this is where we start guiding new designers through the process. From here, we flesh out the design as the building block to make the pattern from. 2. A pattern is made Our expert pattern makers use a digital system called CAD. Using a system like this allows us to make patterns quickly and efficiently. Where altering and adjusting of patterns is needed, working from a digital software allows us to make edits much quicker than if the pattern was on card. This ultimately reduces time and money for all our clients. 3. A toile is sewn A toile is a type of garment we create in order to test the pattern. The toile is often made from inexpensive material that holds the same characteristics of your sample fabric. This stage aims to test the fit, length, proportions and other important aspects of your design. Think of the toile as the perfect prototype to test your design and to gain a complete overview. This stage is very important. If your pattern does not work on a toile, then it is likely it wont work when creating a sample from your desired, more expensive fabric. 4. Fitting We fit the toile to a model to ensure sizing, design and proportions are correct. 5. Changes are made We pay attention to any specifications or changes that are needing to be made before moving on to create the sample. These initial processes are one of the many ways we test efficiency and accuracy in each garment. The toile process allows the designer to play with their design prior to the finalising stages. If any changes are made during the toile/ fitting process, this is then translated back to the pattern and altered. 6. A sample is sewn Once the toile is correct, a sample garment will be sewn out of the desired fabric. 7. Sample is fitted Final fitting takes place to correct and finalise any required changes Image: Avantur Process is repeated for perfection The processes are carried out until the client is happy with their garments, and no further edits are needing to be made. 8. Graded into other sizes Where grading is required, our...

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Sourcing Ethical Materials: Understanding the origin of your fabric

Sourcing Ethical Materials: Understanding the origin of your fabric

Posted by on Mar 8, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Fashion, Fashion Design, Industry Know How, Lifestyle | 0 comments

  Choosing eco-friendly fabrics can be an imperative factor in determining whether your label can withstand the constant evolution towards a greener industry. But even when making conscious decisions about your material choices, it’s hard to know what the most sustainable choice can be. Here’s our short list of mighty materials leading the way in eco-fashion! Cotton What is probably the most durable, versatile and widely used textiles, cotton is actually the most damaging to our ecosystems and natural resources! In its production, a substantial amount of dyes and pesticides can be added, plus it can be a hard task in determining the conditions that the cotton has been harvested in. However, organic cotton is a great alternative that can ensure transparency in the harvesting of the material. Read more here on the production of organic cotton.     Lyocell Have you heard of lyocell? This nifty fabric might just be the way of the future! Lyocell is an environmentally friendly material made from wood pulp. The fibre can be more expensive than other materials, however is proven to have fantastic results being both 100% biodegradable and uncompromising with quality and comfort. Read more here on the game changing benefits of lyocell here.   (via Simplifi Fabric)   Hemp One of nature’s wonders, hemp is a material bursting at the seams (pun intended!) with environmental benefits. This crop has the potential to clean up soil pollution and maybe most impressively, only requires half the amount of water to produce into a textile than cotton. Major brand Patagonia says “[it] has a wonderful drape, comparable to linen.” Read more here on the benefits of hemp in fashion and society at large.   Bamboo Bamboo is a fast growing, naturally produced material that has become a popular textile choice in sustainable fashion. The textile is naturally super soft, UV repellent, odorless and antibacterial. The downside to the widespread use of bamboo can arise in the use of chemicals and pesticides when processing the material- i.e – turning Bamboo into a useable material. Viscose rayon is a common form of a bamboo based material, however can often be treated with unnatural solutions at the time of processing. Bamboo Lyocell is even the next best step for the conscious consumer. Read more here on how it is produced.   Common forms of textile production (via Green Hub Online/ Chic Vegan)   Linen Similar to cotton or bamboo, Linen is a natural fibre produced via extraction from the stalk of a flax plant. The flax plant is SO versatile! Flax can produce a wide range of products from textiles to linoleum flooring, and even providing the natural health benefits of flaxseed oil. As a textile, linen is extremely durable, hypoallergenic and breathable. Consumers are not compromised for quality, and sources say linen clothing only gets better with each wear! Read more here on the...

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Mentee’s Launch: Love Linen

Mentee’s Launch: Love Linen

Posted by on Feb 4, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Fashion, Fashion Design, Follow the Label, Mentee | 0 comments

Our Mentee: Helen Atcheson, owner of Love Linen Recent graduate of Sample Room’s Fashion Label Launch Pad Program, Helen Atcheson has launched an ethically accredited and sustainable womenswear label, Love Linen! Inspired by the Australian climate, in particular the tropics of Broome, Helen’s collection seeks to capture a true quality, luxury and style designed to last a lifetime. What is your collection about? Love Linen is a high quality collection of womenswear born from a passion for sustainable and locally produced clothing. Linen is the ultimate ‘resort wear’ textile, and our goal is to create a luxurious range of consciously manufactured clothing. Who is it for? It’s not just for the everyday woman. She loves quality over quantity, she appreciates classic styles, she does her part for a sustainable future, she shops local… and she loves linen!     What did you do for a career before you started your label? I have a background in hospitality, administration and HR. I also have a strong artistic side, of which I have only just been able to put into practice through launching my own label. What is the biggest thing you learnt whilst working through the development process? I learnt the importance of choosing fabric to suit your design. Fabric, fabric, fabric is the key! I think it is important to realise that you will learn something new at each and every stage of development. You are forever learning and editing your ideas. Learning how to communicate your designs is also extremely important. What would you do differently if you did it all over again? I would have definitely simplified some of my designs for my first launch before moving to more involved patterns. The relationship with your pattern maker is so important! However, I am so happy with my first range and I can only look forward to the growth from here.     How can people buy your product? Love Linen is available online across Australia and New Zealand. We will be participating at local pop-up shops and markets this year in Broome and are working on securing some select wholesale outlets in Broome and around Australia. You can keep up to date with all Love Linen news via our social platforms listed. What is some advice you would give someone else looking to start a label? It will not be easy. If you are not comfortable spending at least $30 – $60K before you make a sale then walk away now. If you still have this niggle that won’t go away of something that is your passion and you know it will work – trust. Trust yourself because you can do it, you just can’t do it alone. You will need help, you will need education and you will need support. At the very least the Launch Pad Program is a fantastic beginning. I wouldn’t be here...

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Market Research 101

Market Research 101

Posted by on Jan 9, 2019 in Emerging Designers, Fashion, Industry Know How, Marketing, Mentee | 0 comments

When launching a new label into the current landscape of the fashion industry, you can never do too much research! Knowledge is power, and a thorough understanding of where your brand sits alongside your competitors is something that will help in shaping the personality of your brand. Each month our Fashion Label Launch Pad students participate in a hosted group call to discuss queries and questions they are experiencing in the journey of starting up new fashion labels. Last month we discussed what to consider when carrying out market research and how to implement your findings to better your label as a whole. Here are our top considerations! SWOT Analysis Analysing your business’ strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats is the first step in helping to determine where your label fits against your competitors in the marketplace you are appealing to, plus the wider fashion marketplace at large. What are your strengths? Is it the team you have behind you? Or is it the technology you have at your fingertips to create your unique garments? What is going to give your business a leg up in this industry and how do you stand out from the crowd? Your weaknesses can be evaluated alongside unexpected threats. Knowing your label’s disadvantages early on will help in staying well prepared for anything that comes your way, therefore being able to problem solve quickly and effectively. Business Plan/ Marketing What do you want the next 3-5 years of your business to look like? In the early stages of your label never underestimate the power of goal setting. Set your goals high and don’t stop until you get there! Think of your budget. What costs are going to be involved? How much and how frequently? What about unexpected costs, how are you placed to deal with them? Know your expenses vs your income and use your market research to help in formulating your tailored business plan. Important Considerations and Tools What is the size of the marketplace/ or segment of the marketplace you want to operate in? What are the current trends? Does this segment need another label and how can you position yours to succeed? What is the price point for your product? How does this fit into your desired marketplace? What other labels are selling similar garments at similar price points? You can observe their social activity, marketing and publicity campaigns to help give some direction on how to conduct your own marketing of your label. Useful tools Ecommerce platforms Fashion/ trade magazines Print and online industry media Discussions with other like minded brands and labels in your marketplace Use of focus groups Contact Sample Room today to see how we can guide you in formulating your tailored business plan and assist in the success of your new fashion...

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