In the coming days and weeks ahead, I will be creating a product/service catalog replete with custom designs for many of the apparel blanks I’ve acquired. I had no idea how important this would be until I tried to organize myself to be able to talk intelligently about the products I am planning to offer.
With my home machine, I have created a number of custom embroidered dish towels, bibs, and burp cloths. My thought was to work on the skill of embroidery, mastering design centers, stabilizers/backing, and learning as much as I could about colors, threads, needles and various other notions.
That isn’t enough, however, to maintain a thriving business and a flow. Creating the catalog will be an easy reference to garments that are embroidered along with any options or variances (sizes, colors, designs, placements). Customers need to know what is being offered and very often times want to understand the variety in the garments; i.e. whether they run small or large, how thick or thin the garment actually is, and whether it can be further personalized.
Many resources are available to help with this. I chose to join NNEP (National Network of Embroidery Professionals) and to use the tools available from Joyce Jagger, The Embroidery Coach. Suppliers/vendors/distributors often times carry very similar garments. The ability to tell a client the difference between through displaying a service catalogue will not only create a professional feel; it will help to answer questions that customers may not even know they have.
Service Catalogues change with what is being offered. Styles change, ‘in’ colors change with the seasons, and different generations will want different garment fits. It is up to us as the professional to be able to stay on top of what is in, what isn’t and what the target market may want. Some days this certainly seems to be a challenge. However, suppliers usually carry the latest trends as well as the classics. I’ve been very impressed with Atlantic Coast Cotton, Blank Apparel, and Bella + Canvas. I’m sure there are many more suppliers; I’m excited to explore this side of the business more. Trade shows in the future will certainly be on my calendar, as the feel of a garment sometimes cannot be ascertained in a description.
Stay tuned for a service catalogue, coming soon to the site. I guess I have a lot of work to do!