A reader writes:
I have read your book, love it, and am ready to get my women’s fashion design business going. Although I have read the book through and through, I cannot find any info on when exactly I should start planning for a summer line, since I have already missed the boat for fall. When can I start planning for spring/summer?
The fast answer is now. Get cracking on Spring/Summer immediately because markets open in late October. The spring/summer market in LA opens Oct 21, 2005. You can find a 12 month calender for most of the trade shows at ApparelNews.net.
In fact, the big companies will start product development on their Fall 2006 lines beginning Sept 1 if they haven’t already. That comes in preparation for Fall 2006 markets opening in January.
Now, as a DE and a model of lean manufacturing, I’d hope your style and sample production schedule would be running closer to delivery dates than would be the larger companies. This of course, being the advantage of being a smaller, more nimble company. Retailers are happy to buy closer to season so if you’re a little behind getting out of the starting gate, it’s not too late to start now but you don’t have any time to waste.