This is the first post of a series that will define what I want Farandine to stand for and be.
The article itself has been sitting here, waiting for over a month now because I wanted to create gorgeous visuals for this series. But truth be told, I don’t have neither the time nor the money to make the visuals as good as I want them to be, so I’ve been battling with the age old dilemma of the perfectionist designer: create something beautiful or don’t put up anything at all vs the need to illustrate words. The perfectionist won – the words are what’s important, at least for now, so here goes.
Walking away from a nameless process
I see the way things are usually done these days as nameless. First, the designer(s) create a design, which is sent to a company (that tends to be far away) to be manufactured. There is little to no link between the designers and the ones who make the clothes. They don’t talk, or exchange any sort of knowledge. Then the clothes come back and are sold to the masses. I don’t mean to be rude by this, it’s just how it feels. There is a target audience for each piece or company, but it is anonymous people who fit a certain demographic.
The way I want to do things is really quite different. To start with, I want to work with a local manufacturer. Local is a bit vague right now, it either means European as manufacturing in Denmark would be far too expensive and virtually impossible for a small company with little-to-no money and small production runs, or US-based. I know, the US can’t be considered local by any stretch, but it may very well be by the time things are concrete and have reached the manufacturing stage. In any case, what’s paramount, are the ethics of the people running the company and the working conditions of the people working there.
I also want to know who the clothes are made for. Yes, they will be designed, just like any other designer tends to, with a target audience in mind, rather than specific individuals. But I do however want to go into the manufacturing stage for actual people. I’ll explain how I plan on doing that in more detail over the next point.
Getting rid of the wasteful and anonymous pre-production process
On top of its anonymity, one thing I’d like to change, is the guess work that comes from the pre-production process. The vast majority of apparel companies estimate how much they will sell of each piece. We all know this leads to huge stock, and potential waste of money, let alone resources.
What I’d like to do to is to completely turn the way things are done. My plan is for each item to be available as pre-orders. So once the collection comes out, one can pre-order any piece one wants up to a certain date. Then and only then do we send the collection to be manufactured. This means we would only be producing/making the amount of clothes and sizes that will go to customers. Each item is made for a person, and for that person only, making the process a person to person one.
Yes, that means that items are only available for a limited amount of time; once the pre-ordering phase is over, it isn’t possible to order any more, unless there are returns. And customers who ordered come first for size exchanges. Yes, this limits sales and cash flow, but, as little business-minded as it may sound, money isn’t why I want to start Farandine. I want to create an ethical, respectful, human label and clothes that are desirable, period.
That’s it for the first two points, if anything is unclear or you have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. I want to be as transparent as possible.