I received an email recently about a new fashion business book by Alison Lewy called Turn your talent into a business Design Create Sell. The book is a guide to starting and running a fashion business and produced in partnership with Country Living Magazine. The book sounded like an interesting read and decided to review. I know there are a lot young and incredibly talented people who would like run their own business but don?t know where to start. Plus, I enjoy reading about the business side of the fashion industry and it?s a good way to understand how it all works. You can make the best clothes in the world but if you don?t know your business lingo you?ll stick out like a sore thumb and you won?t get very far. Here?s a breakdown of what the book is all about and what I think of it. I won?t go into too much detail and will just cover the key points.
At first glance, the book is a nice travel size and uses purple as the running theme so it doesn?t take too much room in your bag and add any extra weight. I love the way the front cover is designed using the typical supplies you would find in a designer?s studio.
The book is divided into eleven chapters with an Introduction and conclusion at the end:
The first chapter gives an overview of the fashion business discussing that it?s vital to have an understanding of the fashion industry and what market is suitable for your business. It goes on to discuss the various market segments including Haute couture, eco fashion and ready-to-wear in great length. Other topics include roles in the fashion industry such as forecaster, designer and buyer.
Chapter two examines creating a business plan. I?m glad that is book covers this in great detail as it?s important to have a clear view on what you?re business is going to be about and where you see it going. A step-by-step guide is illustrated to show exactly what you need to include in and what type of company you would like to be e.g limited or private company.
Design Create Sell moves on to researching and how it?s crucial to for any business to be successful. Afterwards it goes into range planning which which basically means what your collection will consist of and this is based on research, costs, manufacturing, ethics and etc. The chapter goes on to talk about pricing strategy and all the fashion business lingo.
Chapter Five talks about building your brand, just like branding your blog and moves on to the production process in chapter six so this is all about getting your samples and where it will be manufactured and breaks everything down further detail.After you?ve learnt about samples and manufacturing its time to now focus on whether you will sell your products as wholesale or retail as and where you will sell your designs- e.g pop up shop or online market place like Esty or Ebay.
Chapters eight converses about buying season calendars, sales appointments and how to go about it along with pitching your company to a buyer and making sure you sell yourself in a professional manner so that you get heaps of orders. This is then followed by promoting your brand through social media outlets, lookbooks, getting under a PR company and creating press packs.Chapter ten talk about the financial side of business and how to budget getting sponsorship and funding.
Finally, chapter 11 covers protecting your brand and products, this chapter covers things like copyright, design, trademarks and patents.
One thing I like about the book is that there?s a glossary in case you?re unfamiliar with fashion terms and useful links to visit for further reading. The language is clear, concise and comprehensive. Each chapter ends with a Case Study to show a real life example of a business. I think this is a fantastic idea as it gives a better understanding of the chapter and backs up what Lewy is saying throughout the whole book. I highly recommend this book to anyone that wants to start their own business or just wants to brush up as fashion is an extremely competitive market I believe that if you learn the A-Z of business of fashion, you will stand out and go very far. The book costs £12.99 which is a good price for a tool that will help you turn your dream into a reality.