Old habits die hard, they say, but regardless of how hard it is to kill them, if they are hindering your income and growth then they need to die. As a fashion designer in a world that is filled with many that are towing the same path, you need to find ways to stand out to attract your target market to yourself.
Last week, we reviewed a video by Desola of Daisy’s Wardrobe on how to develop a size chart for your clothing line and this week, we reviewed a video by Ada-Uju of Stitchadress on ‘Sewing Habits that are Affecting Your Income and Growth’. In it, she talks about habits dressmakers have that hinder their growth and income and that they need to let go of.
The video aims to help fashion designers identify the habits they need to let go of to begin to attract new clients to their brands.
This video review will cover;
- useful points fashion entrepreneurs can learn from,
- important points missed out,
- the relevance of the information provided to fashion entrepreneurs.
Useful Points for Fashion Entrepreneurs
1. Looking for the Easy Way Out.
When it comes to dressmaking, as technology advances, there are easier ways to do some things, but the sewing basics remain the same. There is a fixed way to cut flares, basic slips, and many more – even if you want to add an extra touch to them.
As a dressmaker, sometimes people teach you shortcuts to creating a particular outfit and you take it, knowing fully well that this shortcut will not get you the desired result. Doing this tarnishes your image and diverts customers away from you even without you knowing.
For example, don’t look for formulas to calculate underbust measurement, nipple to nipple measurement, and so on instead of measuring the client, always measure the client. There is no formula as precise as measuring the client and getting the right measurements to use.
2. Not Lining/Using the Wrong Colour Of Lining for Your Outfits.
Many dressmakers do not line outfits they know should be lined. Lining affects the texture and structure of a dress, so it matters. Always line your outfits except that dress has a style that does not need lining.
Lining is very affordable so there is no excuse not to line your outfits. Your business is not getting enough customers because people look at you and see what you have made for other customers and can tell if you know your job or not.
Another thing to avoid is using the wrong colour of lining for outfits. If a dress is pink, do not use blue lining for it, use a pink lining. The lining you use for your outfits goes a long way in telling how much attention you pay to details and your finishing.
What you and your customers wear will either bring more customers to you or divert them away from you and it will affect your income.
3. Not Sewing Neatly.
If you do not know how to sew neatly, cultivate the habit of doing so. Learn to work on yourself and sew neatly – loosening mistakes you make on an outfit, not using too many stitches at a point, cutting out any excess thread, and so on.
Make sure your finishing is topnotch.
Always look for ways to make your outfits neat. Weave your seam allowances, make sure the zips aligns properly with the outfit, topstitch the neckline, and just generally find ways to improve on your finishing.
4. Sticking to Outdated Sewing Techniques.
While there are some basics in sewing that you should not let go of, there are some outdated techniques that you should not be caught using.
For example, in the past, facing was used to turn over necklines, the hems of blouses, and so on, but now it is the lining of the blouse that is used to turn over its neckline and hems. You need to embrace this and stop using the outdated method.
Some old sewing techniques are not compatible with this generation and you just have to let them go. While there are some outfits that people still use facing to turn over, most are no longer done that way, so you have to adapt.
Techniques that were used of old that made clothes look big and without shape have changed, you also need to change as well.
5. Not Sewing Trending Styles.
There are some styles of clothes that are no longer trending, for example, the old style of sewing a bubu that left the sides open and bare has evolved to have the sides closed and with lots of drama, and you have to let go of the old ways and evolve as well.
Learn to always add an extra touch to every outfit you get. Do not ever just give a client back the style they asked for without putting your extra touch into the outfit.
If you are a tailor, learn to sew trending styles because they will keep you in business. Do not be stuck with the old ways of doing things. As fashion evolves and new designs come up, find ways to infuse them into your sewing.
Important Points Missed Out
1. Not Ironing Your Seams.
Ironing the seams of an outfit as you sew helps bring out the beauty of that outfit. As a fashion designer, you need to remember never to deliver an outfit to a client without first ironing every seam.
Even if it means spending more time at the ironing table than at the sewing table, you need to iron. It will make a positive difference in the outfits your produce.
2. Not Following Pattern Directions.
When making an outfit with a patterned fabric, you must follow the direction the patterns on the fabric goes in. Do not sew the top of a dress with the pattern going vertically, sew the bottom with the pattern going horizontally, and sew the sleeves with the pattern going diagonally – except, of course, that is the style you hope to achieve.
Always align the pattern on an outfit properly to make the outfit look appealing to the eyes of customers.
The Usefulness of the Information to Fashion Entrepreneurs
The information provided in this video is relevant and applicable to fashion designers in Nigeria because we have all come across dressmakers and seamstresses that have these bad habits. As a fashion designer, you need to begin to consciously begin to identify habits that might be hindering the growth and income of your business and consistently work on them.