Establishing Contacts! (& other stuff)
First of all, Happy Holidays!!! I know it has been a while so let me touch on what I've been up to...
I have really been focusing on my music while in production for my first line of pieces! I am planning on releasing a beat pack/tape by the end of the year; which is one of my goals for 2017. It is crazy looking back, considering I started learning how to use Logic Pro X in May and had little to no production experience before that (#humblebrag). I will be releasing this project on my SoundCloud on 12/31... so stay tuned!!!!!
On the clothing front; I am currently in pre-production for my first few pieces. When I say pre-production, I mean to say that I'm doing any and all things to prep for actual production (when the shirts are actually made). Examples of things I do in pre-production include making designs, refining them, talking to merchandisers & wholesalers and ultimately trying to make sure that I get EXACTLY what I ask for when I send my designs to be made by either a screen printer, embroidery shop, manufacturer, etc. The tough part with this is that it's my first time doing this! So everything can go 100% according to my plan; but completely mess up in the end. At the end of the day though; I can either place an order or wait to move things forward.
Right now, I am waiting until after the holidays to place my orders; and working on getting all my technical information correct. The reason I am not releasing a full collection all at once is, frankly, because I don't have the money! Production costs money, especially when using sources from the USA! I will do my best to keep costs as low as possible for my customers, but if something ever seems a little high, please know that it is because I am sourcing all my garments, hats, services from people like you and me in the USA; people who have families to feed and bills to pay.
The title of this post is "Establishing Contacts" because I think the most important thing I can take away from my whole experience is to make solid connections with the people who are going to actually be making my products. I can't stress this enough!!! A good contact will bend over backwards to fit your needs and can take a lot of stress off your plate; a bad contact will do the exact opposite and only add stress!!!
In conclusion, if you're thinking of starting your own brand, or even if you want to make a couple t-shirts for you and some friends, you should make some local contacts for the following categories:
1. Blank Apparel (I like using Shirtwholesaler.com; good prices, solid products, good shipping time!)
2. Stickers (Stickermule is awesome!)
3. Patches (HeroPatches has great prices and has a lot of sales!)
4. Embroidery/Hats/Beanies (StitchAmerica.com; just started working with them but they have great reviews!)
5. A Screen Printer (You can find someone local or buy an actual screen printer yourself; I myself am still working through this one)
Hopefully this helps anyone looking to get started in the streetwear/retail/apparel industry!! If you want to follow my brand, please stay tuned to my Instagram (@anmtd.co) where I'll be doing most of my brand communication from here on out. I'll be blogging here and there to generally keep everyone up to date; but IG is the best way to stay up.
Happy Holidays to everyone and I hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable time!!!