How streetwear manufacturers make comfortable clothes?
The answer is simple – they use soft and stretchy materials. Fabrics with a lot of fluff and buttery feel are brushed french terry and fleece. They are the most popular fabrics for hoodies and sweatshirts. Great streetwear manufacturers should be able to offer you those fabrics in many different weights.
Connection between softness and fabric weight
Materials like brushed french terry will pack more of that fluffy inner part as their weight increases. Therefore, the equation is simple – heavier material means more comfort. The most popular fabric weight for hoodies and sweatshirts is 340 gsm but feel free to go higher if next-to-skin comfort is your goal.
Your ideal streetwear manufacturer should have those readily available as well as the machinery to process them properly. That means that you should aim for a supplier with a knitting mill.
Cutting heavier fabrics the right way
The thing about 340 gsm soft brush french terry or similar fabric is that it takes up a lot of space on the cutting table. To cut it perfectly, clothing manufacturers must use CNC fabric cutters.
If they used manual cutters, the bottom layers wouldn’t have the same shape as the top layers. As a result, you might end up with faulty clothes that stretch unevenly. And even if you notice the badly-cut pieces, you’ll surely lose time waiting for proper replacements to arrive.
Add stretchiness for better mobility
If the design of your streetwear piece traces the body even slightly, make sure to ask for materials with elastane. Even 5% of it would improve the mobility and comfort of the people wearing your brand.
Skin-contact area comfort
Whenever you’re sure people will wear your clothes next-to-skin, one thing you must insist on is flat seams. The seam is a line where streetwear manufacturers sew together two or more layers of fabric. With special machinery, they can make them flat to prevent chafing.
How do streetwear manufacturers make practical clothes?
The practicality of a streetwear piece can be something as simple as its zippability or pockets of a specific size and position may be connected to practicality too. A weather-resistant jacket as a part of your streetwear brand is also rather practical.
To achieve these goals, a clothing factory you get in touch with should be able to make custom clothing. In other words, they should be able to work off your tech packs. If they only offer white label, template clothing, steer clear of them. They probably haven’t set up their production for customization.
The complete customizability of clothes is especially important for the self-expression element of your brand.
How to achieve self-expression with streetwear
Full customization of garment manufacturing is necessary for achieving originality. That applies to even seemingly simple products like t-shirts.If they are to customize garments, manufacturers must be able to work off various tech packs, create multiple samples and recreate existing garments. Simple as.
Ask the manufacturers if their sampling department recreates other garments and/or work with clients’ tech packs. If they don’t, they’re not the right fit.
Unless originality of your brand focuses on graphics. In that case, other things start to matter more. When you have incredible illustrations that would look great on textile, then a variety of printing techniques from the manufacturers’ part can play a major role in your quest for brand originality.
Different printing techniques to achieve uniqueness
To get you fully covered, streetwear manufacturers that you plan to work with should offer both screen printing and dye-sublimation printing. We say this because screen printing works better with cotton and natural fibres. On the other hand, dye-sublimation provides the best colour transfer on polyester fibres.
This way, you’ll be able to transfer your graphics and illustrations to any fabric.
What else makes a great streetwear manufacturer?
Other than being able to make comfortable and practical streetwear that stands out in a good way, clothing manufacturers should be ethical, sustainable, and transparent. You can take the easy way like so many modern-slavery-benefiting inhumane huge brands and flat out lie about being sustainable and ethical.
Or you can do the right thing and actually find a factory that ticks all the boxes when it comes to fair working conditions and a positive impact on the environment.
How to spot an ethical streetwear manufacturer
If the manufacturer is really ethical, their workers should have enough free time to have a life outside of work. Regarding the compensation, they should be paid at least the national minimum wage of their respective country. Also, they should receive bonus rates for overtime and work during weekends. That’s a bare minimum. You’d be surprised how often this isn’t the case.
This is where we as streetwear manufacturers believe to really stand out. All our workers:
- Earn at least 20% more than the Serbian national minimum wage
- Work eight-hour shifts
- Receive overtime bonuses (which is a legal requirement often overlooked or misrepresented in the textile industry)
- Receive childbirth, and marriage bonuses (not a legal requirement in Serbia)
How to spot an eco-friendly clothing manufacturer
Ideally, the manufacturer would either have the ISO-14001 standard or a social compliance certificate. Standards and certificates are a guarantee that all the processes in the factory are carried out in a way that’s safe for the environment.
But even without certificates and standards, a streetwear manufacturer should still find a way to stay sustainable. They can handle wastewater safely and handle textile waste so that it doesn’t end up in landfills. Ideally, have an alternative source of energy like wind electrical systems or solar panels.
This is another field where we believe what we do stands out from the usual practices in the textile industry because:
- We handle our wastewater with a certified wastewater system
- We give all our excess textile from the cutting room to a local sports equipment manufacturer that makes boxing bag fillings out of it
- We have a solar power system in our factory in south-eastern Serbia
- We operate under the ISO 14001 standard
Transparent streetwear manufacturers
There are many garment factories out there with all kinds of social compliance certificates and ISO standards that actually break almost every certification rule. If it weren’t like that, a tragedy like Rana Plaza would have never happened.
The thing is, many social compliance audits are carried out in a way that gives the manufacturers enough time to cook the books and intimidate and train the employees to lie during interviews in order for the company to obtain the certificates.
Once they do, they have a perfect smokescreen for whatever happens behind closed doors.
Don’t get us wrong, there are definitely clothing factories that deserved all their certification. Such a clothing factory would welcome visitors, be it existing or potential clients.
If a clothing manufacturer you get in touch with acts evasively to the mention of a factory visit, that’s a major red flag and you should run away from them as fast as you can. It’s likely they’re doing something wrong, even if they boast with shiny certificates attached to their name.
Factory visits at FUSH˚ are a common occurrence. What’s more, we have five apartments in the factory complex so you could spend days immersing yourself in the clothing manufacturing experience. For those of you eager to visit us this very moment, there’s a virtual tour of our clothing factory in Oraovica, south-eastern Serbia.
Once we start cooperating, we’d even film the manufacturing process of your product so that your brand can really benefit from radical transparency that is an ever-growing trend in fashion.
In order to make comfy, practical, and original pieces of streetwear in an ethical and eco-friendly way, a clothing manufacturer must tick many boxes. Modern machinery, skilled and well-paid textile experts, sustainable factories, and radical transparency are some of the must-haves for any manufacturer that can actually help your streetwear line outshine other brands. If they lack one, that’s one too many so brace yourself when you decide to go manufacturer hunting, it might take a while.
Unless you want to give us a try. To do so, fill out the contact form below the FAQ excerpt. If you can, provide as many details about your potential order as possible.