One of my Parsons x Teen Vogue online courses is Understanding Fashion Production, which is reeky vital if you want to survive in the fashion world and turn your ideas into a profitable business. For my Production Costs Assignment, I was challenged to cost a product that I had created and designed: a bead fringed choker that was inspired by a GlitterLimes orange. Luckily, I took a Creating and Producing course last summer at FIT, so the idea of tech packs and cost sheets weren't too daunting.
The first step of costing my product was determining the cost of the materials I used. The orange, beaded ribbon I bought was $1/yard, and I used 14 inches of it. That served as the base of the choker. I created the beaded fringe using thread and 180 glass micro beads, which came out to $5.40. The clasp and jump rings (which are sewn on and used to attach the necklace) are $0.26 total. Because I was just starting out, the entire process took about an hour, which is $10 worth of labor (at $10 per hour). The total production cost came out to $17.04, which is $20.45 assuming a 20% profit. Because I wanted to make a $4 off of each, I raised the estimated retail price to $24.50.
I discussed this price with my peers, who are my 'target customers,' so to speak. $24.50 per choker can seem pricey to a teenager who can easily access a simper version for $5 at Forever 21, but the unique beaded fringe and hand-made care held weight with my 'consumers,' who agreed that the price was probably reasonable. However, I think that younger customers would appreciate lower costs if possible.
The course discussed some of the ways that a production cost could be lowered in order to sell mass amounts of a product and appeal to my audience. For example, I could definitely benefit from finding a quicker way to hand-sew the beaded fringe that would make the process more efficient and lower the production cost. I also learned that I could use cheaper yet similar materials to do the same thing.
This project encouraged me to think in terms of business, which is always helpful when you're planning on making a living off of your creative passion.
Hope you found this interesting, more Parsons x Teen Vogue material to come soon!