Clothing manufacturers with low MOQ often get hidden by the global giants who are listed on the first page of Google research results. Often the main blockage to starting a clothing label is the infamous 1000 piece or 300kg fabric minimums we all know too well. This can be extremely disheartening for first time designers.
However, textile operations who see value in new designers and labels do exist. You can relax.
These smaller clothing manufacturers with a low MOQ are genuinely interested in scouting for design talent. When the designs are unique and the factory believes in the product, a sustainable business relationship can be fostered. This benefits both parties.
Boutique factories usually value keeping the main thing – creating fashion as a form of art and expression. This is because they are built on the foundation of clothing as a platform. One that celebrates and promotes both creativity and innovation. As opposed to fast fashion where under cutting the market is prevalent.
If you are a designer with a talent bigger than your first order, you should stick around. In this article, we answer all your low MOQ questions.
Why do many clothing manufacturers require such a high MOQ?
To find a clothing supplier that you trust, that is ethical and can provide you with low quantity minimums is a diamond in the rough. You must know that.
Firstly, low quantity minimums are rare because fabric is at its cheapest when it is fresh off the weave and in bulk. We are talking around 300kg. It is common to make fabric to order for brand giants with a huge capital behind them.
However, some fabric manufacturers still produce their own designs and staple fabrics. Although, they are not interested in selling portions of their fabric. This is because they do not want to be left with awkward amounts of metres and colours. It is best for them to sell the entire roll all at once. Often the next buyer of the fabric puts an additional margin on the fabric and sells it again, in smaller quantities. This supply chain can happen a number of times. Consequently, markets, Western countries and online stores end up with the highest prices. Even tripling the starting metre price. Clothing manufacturers with a low MOQ either require you to supply fabric or a good manufacturer has a connection with the second in line on the fabric supply chain. Therefore, they have the ability to keep costs low.
Does pattern making have anything to do with high MOQ?
The answer is simple. Yes. Time is money.
The pattern maker is one of the highest paid staff members. Drawing up your pattern in multiple sizes takes time. You must know that.
Manufacturers are able to cover costs patterning and cutting fabric when quantities are high. Put simply, it is not worth their time and money to manufacture an extremely low quantity such as 10 items. Essentially, the clothing manufacturer with a low MOQ would lose money by processing these small orders. They must cover their outlays including wages, rent, electricity, marketing etc. This is why they prefer bigger orders. Don’t worry, you gain more insight into the industry during the manufacturing process. You’ll see for yourself.
Who will make a low MOQ for my new brand?
Do your research and price up local suppliers and factories abroad. Or you can use our research on the following clothing manufacturers with low MOQ’s.
If you are in the U.S. and decide to do your manufacturing locally, the Pennsylvania based Arifkin Co is a good option. This company was established in 1982 serving American clients. They create a range of products such as uniforms, dance and athletic wear for private labels. They also specialise in courier, cash and locking bags. For those who are looking to create innovative products that haven’t hit the market yet.
Identically, Yoke Apparel Manufacturing in Central Vietnam pride themselves on offering a low minimum order quantity. They also double as a social enterprise. Whilst employing disadvantaged members from the community, Yoke’s highly qualified manager runs a tight ship. Together they produce top-notch clothing ordered from Western designers. Yoke is a clothing manufacturer with a low MOQ because they aim to empower brave entrepreneurs and fashion artists.
Supporting small businesses matters to Yoke as families’ success and well-being are at stake. You can read more about them here.
See? You do have options. Both in the East and the West.
How do I know I can trust them?
There are 3 ways you can investigate a clothing manufacturer with a low MOQ;
Firstly, if a factory wants your business they will allow you to order a sample of the design you have envisaged. That way you can make any tweaks and check the workmanship and fabric quality. Although sampling is quite expensive, it is worth it for your higher priced items.
Secondly, to get a well-rounded idea of your supplier, you have their socials to jump over and see what they are all about. Their Facebook and Instagram should give you a sneak peak of the factory floor and the people you are entrusting your brand with.
Leaving the best for last, how about visiting the factory? Manufacturers with no skeletons in the closet should be open to a client seeing where their money is going. For instance, Yoke Apparel Manufacturing have their doors open to clients. You can be one, too.
Why is manufacturing timely?
From the moment you submit your enquiry to the day you receive your product, can vary between weeks and months.
When your order is simple – you can save time, obviously. For example, ordering T-shirts using the supplier’s fabric.
However, your wait time increases when you are manufacturing items that are unique and contain particular embellishments. When you add extras such as draw strings, sequins, and zippers. Those may require extra sourcing time. You must take that into consideration if you’re in a rush.
Once the manufacturer believes they have found the fabric or embellishments, they can gain purchase approval from the client. The manufacturer can then proceed with organising freight to the factory. Following this, sampling takes place. The product is then sent to the client and finally manufacturing the order happens. You have the entire process here.
Clothing manufacturers with low MOQ do not usually have an extended waiting list- so that’s definitely a bonus!
Clothing Manufacturer Low MOQ conclusions
Definitely do not give up your brilliant idea to start your own clothing label. You can do it.
Sure you will need to be persistent sifting through the factories, wait for emails and sample products. But the rewards are huge! If it was easy, everyone would be doing it. Although you might struggle finding a clothing manufacturer with a low MOQ, small operations are out there for you. Your label still has the chance to hit the shelves. You must let the world experience your innovative designs. You got this.
Do you still have more questions? Yoke would be happy to help you with that. Contact them here and let their brilliant team help you answer them.