Fashion Production Planning: Which Strategy Suits You Best?
Updated: Jun 25, 2019
It's essential that the manufacturer is able to estimate how many pieces of each garment should be produced based on projected orders or sales already made based on the designs showcased. But which strategy works best for you? This largely depends on your experience in the field, the types of garments you'll be producing, the strength of your sales team, and the materials you'll be using in the manufacturing process.
Cut-to-order versus cut-to-stock
Make-to-order, also known as cut-to-order production is considered the safest method, since you only produce garments that are actually ordered. Once the manufacturer receives orders from the sales team, the production team efficiently delivers the cut-to-order garments to each customer.
While cut-to-order production is typically reserved for high-end couture, it may also be the best option if you're launching a new fashion line and don't yet have reliable sales forecasts.
Cut-to-stock production means that a set number of garments are produced before being sold based on sales projections. These forecasts take into account the current economic climate, customer sales histories, and the strength of the clothing line in question and are made by trend forecasting agencies, whose aim is to help designers and brand owners know which would be the ideal quantity of garmets to produce.
Traditionally, this has been the approach that most fashion companies and retailers put into use for their production strategies. This is the best strategy for basics that have always sold well, for garments made from custom fabric with a long lead time, and for any other materials that must be imported. While cut-to-stock production is considered riskier than cut-to-order, it allows the manufacturing process to be spread out over time.