(Filed Under wholesale Lingerie News). Angie Lau, CEO at Clover Group, a large Asian producer of intimate apparel, told BODY over tea in the lobby of the Pierre Hotel in November that she was close to announcing a U.S. partner for the new Go! Color bra dyeing process announced last summer at the Paris Mode City lingerie show.
Currently, various bra components are dyed separately, then assembled. The Go! Color process, which utilizes new machinery, threads and dyes allows a producer to finish making a bra before coloring it. The technique speeds bra production by weeks, according to the company, and will allow wholesalers to make color decisions at the end of the cycle rather than at the beginning.
Lau said she is in negotiations to license Go! Color to a single dye house in the U.S. to start, and has similar plans for the rest of the world, noting that she has applied for patents “globally.” Lau plans to name her U.S. partner “at the Femmy Awards” in February, 2015 where 3-D Intimate Apparel Ltd., a Clover division, is receiving the Innovation Award for the Go! Color process.
While she noted that “all our customers know about it” (and these include the very biggest names in the lingerie world), “it will take at least six to nine months to get everything ready and tested” before the process begins in the U.S. Lau explained that the development of Go! Color, which was sponsored by Clover, was initially completed about a year ago. “We made our own machines” to invent the process and submit patent claims, said Lau. The original equipment, she smiled, was something of a makeshift contraption, “a chitty chitty bang bang machine,” as she described it. Currently, “We are actually in the process of working with Italian machine people,” to create full-scale production equipment.
“We are choosing the right partner, one that believes in the technology,” noting that gearing up for the new dyeing process “is not a small investment.”
Once the Go! Color process is up and running, Lau envisions that goods will “come in unfinished” to the U.S. “and the dyeing will be done here.” After the bra has been dyed, “within two days I can ship it.” The process allows for very small dyeing runs, if desired, “minimum batches of 300 bras.”
And the bras can be different sizes. “All they have to do is make the bra in finished form and then decide what color that they want.” The process works with a wide variety of bra fabrics and materials, but Lau added, “we just need one kind of thread and I will supply the thread.”
Ideally, she pointed out, her big clients “would like to test the colors and then react” by placing large orders with the colors that tested the best.
“You are eliminating 30 to 60 days off that calendar. And you have the ability to test what the customer wants, the ability to pinpoint exactly what the customer wants and save time.”
“It’s like you are next door with your dyeing facility”
The Clover CEO noted that the new process is also “good for a lot of ongoing styles” where the producer changes only the color of the bra based on the latest fashion trends and season.
Lau provided an interview in which one of the Go! Color inventors, Nancy Chang, elaborated on the advantages of the new process. “In terms of the delivery time and the response to market changes we might be doing much better than other lingerie manufacturers in the future,” she stated. The process incorporates shrinkage adjustments and also “will not generate a hard hand feel” when the products are dry. The process allows “various selections of fascinating colors.”
“Even though the customer is not sure about what color they want they can still place the order to us. When we finish producing the lingerie they confirm the color with us and we can deliver the products in about one week. In the past the clients had to determine which color to use, and we need two or three weeks to make pads and another three weeks for sewing. Which took around six weeks to finish. Now is takes only one or two weeks. In other words, nowadays, we are already ready when clients call us.”
“I am really looking forward to the response to this technology from the market. And I believe it would be a great success.”
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