Question: My mom and I are setting up a small business providing patterns, samples and manufacturing services for the garment industry. What is the best way for us to find customers on a low budget?
Answer: You should join Fashion Business Inc. (Fashionbizinc.org), a nonprofit organization that provides resources for Los Angeles apparel firms. "This would be a perfect group for you because you'll get services and support, and you can also do networking," said Paul Ratoff, a consultant with the Strategy Development Group in Placentia.
The annual membership fee of $250 will give you training opportunities and a chance to meet local fashion designers who will be looking to outsource their sample- and pattern-making jobs, Ratoff said. Once you get established, you might conduct a seminar on manufacturing, which would give you an opportunity to demonstrate your expertise for potential clients.
Photo by Peter Duhon