Apparel selection is an important thing in a clothing line. It many ways it is “thee” thing. Here are a few tips to help you get started.
NO DOWNTOWN BARGAINS
Avoid the natural impulse to head to downtown LA (or the equivalent) to get “cheaper” apparel. I’m not blaming you for thinking of this. It’s probably the only place you know to get low priced apparel but there are two problems to consider. The first is that the apparel you are going to get is not reliable. It might be great the first time you do it but then the next month it might now be there. The second is that you don’t know if the material composition will work for your production method (more on this later.)
Tip: Work with your production company to choose your apparel. They likely have connections to apparel suppliers and can get you the apparel you want for the same price.
KEEP PRODUCTION IN MIND
When it comes to fabrics there tons of choices available. Ranging in weights, sheerness, feel, etc. But what is commonly forgotten is to keep the production method in mind. Screen printing vs. digital printing vs. heat transfers require different compositions in the fabric for best results. 100% cotton for DTG for instance.
Tip: Before going nuts on your apparel have an idea of how you want to decorate it and let your production company know so they can recommend fabric compositions or at least let you know the limits.
BEYOND THE BRAND
That soft and smooth feel you like is not special to just American Apparel. Also, not all Gildan shirts are rough and boxy. Figure out what you like about certain apparel and get familiar with the proper terms to describe them, such as “ring-spun” and “fitted”. This will allow you to find the same characteristics in other brands for half the price.
Tip: Look up the Gildan 64000 Softstyle shirts as compared to the American Apparel 2001 shirts to see what I mean.
That should get you started for now. If you ever find yourself in the Fullerton area and need some help with your apparel selection, feel free to stop by, we’d love to help.