Sign Up for Updates

Cut & Sew is On Trend for Licensing image

Cut & Sew is On Trend for Licensing

By Mark Seavy

Can the licensing industry get a cut of the premium apparel business?

For the most part, fashion-related licensing efforts  have focused on volume, with premium priced cut-and-sew items largely confined to limited edition collaborations. However, more companies are emerging with a focus on using artist designs to deliver higher end apparel items (including $50 t-shirts and $100 hoodies) that can also lend themselves to licensing.

In the cut-and-sew process, a garment is created using raw fabric and sewing techniques rather than purchasing a garment from a wholesaler and adding a branded design to that existing item. This process allows for more customization options, unique designs, greater quality control, and the use of certain fabrics that cannot be used in other applications.

In the case of 23point5, this means using a digital print-on-demand (POD) technique that injects dye directly onto proprietary fabrics that will feature a design. In doing so, 23point5 employs a roster of 16 artists that receive a 20-25% royalty based on the net sales, according to 23point5 CEO Pouria Maleki, a former Hybrid Apparel executive.

The company produces custom apparel (including t–shirts and hoodies with plans to launch denim and shorts) using this POD process. The cut-and-sew methods enable designs to be applied to each piece of material, with 14 pieces used in the case of hoodies and six pieces for t-shirts, Maleki said. The designs are delivered in 300 dots-per-inch files, but the printers are capable of handling up to 2,400 dots per inch. The company is targeting daily production of 15,000-20,000 units at its facilities in Indonesia, with a goal of delivering custom POD orders in four weeks.

“Everybody wants to do limited-edition, higher end product but that isn’t out there because it is too expensive to produce in those quantities,” Maleki said.

23point5 is not alone in its quest to produce POD premium apparel, as companies like Printify, Apliiq, Through6, TeePublic and others have also explored the strategy. TeePublic similarly uses a network of artists that it first established in 2013 and has produced 1.2 million designs.

And high-end brands like Dolce & Gabbana have long produced limited apparel ranges using cut-and-sew techniques, supported by higher price points, new technologies are making the processes more accessible to companies focused on lower prices.

“The cut-and-sew practices offer numerous benefits, but they are not without challenges,” a licensing executive said. “Cost considerations, scalability issues, and limited access to skilled labor are among the hurdles that manufacturers face. However, innovation, digitalization, and collaborative partnerships are addressing these challenges.”

become a member today

learn more

  • Copyright © 2024 Licensing International
  • Translation provided by Google Translate, please pardon any shortcomings