Monday, May 24, 2010

Marketing Your Fabric Designs

                                         Fabric Design by Andy Mars

I was recently contacted by Andy (Andrea) Mars, a photograher searching for information
re how to break into the fabric/textile design market. Not having a clue
but being curious, I did a little research and was able to provide her
with some leads. It then occurred to me that with all of the recent interest
in being able to get your own fabric designs printed for personal use,
others may also want this information..

                               Fabric Design by Andy Mars

How to Start a Fabric Design Business

Useful info about the field of textile design:
Handbook of Textile Design: Principles, Processes and Practice - Jacquie Wilson - "...there has been a need for some sort of text that covered the textile design process from initial ideas through briefing, research and design development, to finished fabrics being sold to garment designers and to retail. What follows is an attempt to provide such a text. This book is based on my experiences as a textile designer in industry..." Can be downloaded for free.

It includes two chapters on The Professional Practice of Design which includes information about "Getting Design Jobs" 
The Entrepreneur's Guide to Sewn Product Manufacturing - (No affiliation) - " often described as the garment industry 'blue book'”. - The "Newcomer's Guide to the Trade" chapter appears to be very informative, particularly the Free-Lance Design section. It and some other interesting sections can be read online. Check it out to see if you think the book is worth ordering (it's $60) or request a copy from your local library.

Directory of Print and Textile Design Studios Suppliers - May be helpful in locating a fabric agent

International Textile and Apparel Association - The 2010 Design Comptetion is open for submission - Deadline is June 1.

10 Tips on Contracts and Clients

Art Rep 101 - Tips for Creative Professionals - "Whether you’re thinking about working with an art rep, wondering how to find one, or curious about how your relationship with your agent compares that of other artists, you’ll find answers to many of your questions in the articles below." - Articles include: Should you work with an Art Rep?; How to find an Art Rep; How to be attractive to an Art Rep; and several others.

7 Elements of an Effective Portfolio Website - "...when an Art Director or other type of potential client visits your site, they get a clear sense of who you are, what you do, and why you are the right person for their project...a winning portfolio will lead to more contracts, more referrals, and more work doing the types of projects you really want to do."

Printsource: The World of Textile and Surface Design Database - "The Printsource New York Global Design Database (G.D.D.) is the first and only global online tool that allows buyers of surface and textile designs to search for information on creative talent worldwide." - It has a link where a textile or surface design professional can add company information to the database.
Textile Republic - "Textile Republic was founded by Kimberley Osborne-Milstein and Brian Osborne in the spring of 2007 to promote the work of aspiring textile designers across the globe...[It is] an online platform that would easily allow emerging artists and designers the chance to showcase their work..."  

I don't know how effective registering with textile design sites would be, but it can't hurt (especially since being listed is free):

Fibre2Fashion - search engine - a search for "textile design jobs" lists 2,908 current postions all over the world from fulltime employment to freelancers work (including the USA)¤tSection=jobs  

PeoplePerHour - Can post your services here (category is home textile agent)
Some current job postings for textile designer in California: - there may be similar sites for other states,+ca


yasmin sabur said...

What a treasury of resources. Thanks for all of your excellent research and hard work.

Gwen Magee (Gwendolyn) said...

Hi Yasmin,

You are so welcome. I'm happy to share these resources and will keep searching for more.


Anonymous said...

Hi Gwen -- Printsource is delighted to be included in your exceptional list of resources for textile entrepreneurs. Thank you!

We also have an Exhibitor Sales Guide on our site for designers interested in growing in this business. Enjoy!

Gwen Magee (Gwendolyn) said...

Printsource, Thanks for the Exhibitor Sales Guide link. Every resource is very helpful. Its amazing how difficult it was to find information about how to break into the fabric design market.


3B said...

Great collection of resources.we definitely take advantage of all these site for improving our business site..I appreciate for this great work.Advance technology in textile industry has made it possible to offer all sort of fabric with innovative designs in the global markets.
Industry Reports

Anonymous said...

This is an excellent work of gathering resources. I shall share all that. Good job.