How to Choose Between Domestic and Overseas Clothing Manufacturers


Starting your own fashion line is an exciting and nerve-wracking time. As well as the creative aspect of your business, you also need to focus on the practicalities including how you are going to get your garments made. You will only get so far when you manufacture your clothing yourself, and at some point it will become necessary to hire a clothing manufacturer. But how do you choose? You’ve probably seen the articles about how cheap it is to get your clothing made overseas, but is this really the best option? Here we look at the advantages and disadvantages of domestic and overseas clothes factories.

Image courtesy of keerati/
Image courtesy of keerati/

Advantages of Domestic Clothes Manufacturers

When you work with a clothing manufacturer in the UK you are more likely to benefit from a higher quality of manufacture. You can rely on standards being high, and factories in the UK also typically have higher standards of labour practice. One of the advantages clothing manufacturers uk offer is it is much easier to communicate with a factory in the UK compared to somewhere overseas, particularly when you only speak English. And it is more convenient to stick to the same time zone, the same holiday structure, etc. With the proximity of the factory being in the UK you don’t need to worry about sky-high shipping costs, or have to wait for a long time for things to be delivered.

Disadvantages of Domestic Manufacturers

You may find that manufacturing costs are initially higher than costs for manufacturing overseas, but once you add in shipping costs it can work out as the same, or cheaper. You may have a smaller choice of people to work with, and you could find that some products are not made in the UK.

Advantages of Overseas Clothes Manufacturers

As discussed above, manufacturing costs are likely to be lower overseas. And you will have a wide variety of factories to choose from since the market expanded in recent years. You now have an easier time finding factories since the market has opened up considerably.

Disadvantages of Manufacturing Clothes Overseas

Using an overseas clothes manufacturer for your fashion line is not the most straightforward option you have, especially since you have to deal with language difference and time differences. It may be difficult to know what quality you are getting from your products. Some manufacturers are high quality and some are low quality. You are also likely to experience cultural differences that could affect how efficiently you work together. Import tariffs, high shipping costs, and length of time to transport are all negative factors.


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