Mar 15,2006 00:00
Do you ever wonder how fashion trends make it from the runway to real life?
Before clothes arrive on store shelves, every article must go through hundreds of steps and travel thousands of miles. This requires well-coordinated logistics for a fast-paced industry that's already on to the next trend.
"Shipping is the thread that ties our business together," says designer Tomer Gendler. His eponymous menswear label has a loyal following including many stylists and their clients such as Hollywood A-listers Jamie Foxx and Adrien Brody.
Since Tomer started his business four years ago, he has relied on UPS to help him transport designs, fabric and clothing around the world. "When we're creating a collection, we ship almost daily, and every shipment is critical to getting the job done."
Behind the Seams
Before Tomer makes his first sketch, he searches out unique fabrics and trims, such as cashmere blends from Italy, high-tech fabrics from Switzerland and buttons from China. After creating his designs, he orders and ships enough thread, fabric and trim to create samples, which he shows to fashion buyers in New York. These often are shipped back and forth several times from manufacturers in Italy, New York City or China until the look is perfected. Tomer works with the buyers to decide what pieces will be sold in stores.
Then, Tomer and his staff figure out how much fabric is needed to fulfill orders. The production process moves on to a grading company, which tailors patterns to make the clothing line in multiple sizes. UPS ships the patterns, fabric and trim to New York and Italy, where tailors make the clothes.
But it takes more than shipping to make sure the clothes arrive on time. UPS's customs brokers take care of complex textile tariffs so that all of Tomer's pieces clear inspections seamlessly.
After the clothes are made, they are shipped to Tomer's New York showroom for painstaking quality inspections. Finally, the clothing is shipped to stores across the country and around the world.
If Tomer's collection arrives even one day late, stores have the right to cancel the order, leaving him with thousands of dollars' worth of garments that can't be sold. On the other hand, delivering on time ultimately wins more business. "Being on time earns trust," he says. "It says you're a solid business partner."
Tomer makes sure he's on time through package tracking capabilities on UPS.com, so both he and his customers stay in the know. By having a shipping partner take care of these steps, Tomer is free to forget about the logistics and focus on designing and running his business.
Tomer's menswear collection is available in high-end stores, including Takashimaya in New York and Tokyo.