ReHabiliments

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Family Clothing Business Plan

Products

ReHabiliments offers a full collection of apparel that is classy, upscale, and versatile.  This apparel line includes casual and active wear, headgear, workout gear, leather coats, and baseball jackets.  Clothing sizes range from toddler to 5XL (in most items).

ReHabiliments will start out by adding logos and branding to pre-made items selected from ethically-sound producers abroad, and gradually shift to producing more whole items in-house, using our team of designers. 

3.1 Product Description

Casual Wear

"Casual wear" is only one of the phrases used to describe the trend away from pin stripes and high heels.  Other terms include "business casual" (usually means the Dockers-khakis-polo shirt look), "business appropriate" (a step-up from casual), "business ready" (meaning that a "traditional" suit must be ready to wear at all times), "corporate casual," "clearly casual," "resort casual" (definitely not allowed in the office), "refined casual wear" (acceptable provided that you understand what it is), and, perhaps most appropriately, "casual confusion." 

--CNet News.com, "Casual Wear:  Dressing for Success or For Stress?" June 10, 2000

ReHabiliments carries a variety of products to suit the needs of every individual, whether they are dressing for success or for an afternoon of leisure.  Some of the company's products include:

  • Jerseys (50/50 Weight Ultra Blend)
    • Men's Pullover, Long Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $65.00
    • Men's/Women's Pullover, Short Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $55.00
  • T-Shirts (100% Cotton)
    • Men's, Long Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $60.00
    • Men's, Short Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $35.00
    • Women's, Long Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $30.00 (100% Ladies Cotton)
    • Women's, Short Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $25.00 (100% Ladies Cotton)
  • Denim Jackets (100% Cotton Denim)
    • Men's, Small to 5XL:  $65.00
    • Women's, Small to 5XL:  $60.00
  • Denim Pants (100% Cotton Denim)
    • Men's/Women's:  $50.00

In 2004, staying at home to relax will become an important lifestyle choice that will continue throughout the decade.  As dress becomes less formal and more casual most of the time, even at work, so does the desire for differentiation between leisure wear and casual wear.  Consumers will require clothes to "cocoon" in.  These clothes will be soft and comfortable, stretching and retaining shape.  Today, over 50% of consumers require comfort over other qualities in their clothing, as well as wear-easy care. 

--Source:  "Fashion Trends 2004:  Part 1 - General Changes Affecting Textiles," by Pauline Weston Thomas.

Activewear/Sportswear

Athleisure lifestyle apparel, from yoga pants to terry track suits, is on the rise, and ReHabiliments offers a range of high-performance clothing for active sport, trekking, climbing, and travel that is suitable for the street, and practical for the gym.  The collection is characterized by modern, comfortable, high-tech fabrics and functional, ergonomic designs.  The company's active wear products include:

  • Sweatshirts (100% Cotton)
    • Men's/Women's, Long Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $70.00
    • Men's/Women's, Short Sleeve, Small to 5XL:  $60.00
  • Sweatsuits (Velour)
    • Men's/Women's, Small to 5XL:  $100.00

Sports styling will continue to dictate many casual designs throughout 2004, although natural looks where the fabric makes the statement will also be important.  Sportswear and sports styling will continue to grip consumers who desire comfort in everyday wear, yet, as couch potatoes, hardly ever indulge in the activities for which the clothes were originally designed.  (Source:  "Fashion Trends 2004:  Part 1 - General Changes Affecting Textiles," by Pauline Weston Thomas)

Workout Gear

The return of the Olympic Games will help maintain strong sports fashion influences in city wear for both sexes.  This will be more and more popular as the 2004 Olympic fever gains a grip on individuals globally.  Colorful fashion trainers, rather than traditional running trainers, will accommodate the massive shift in shoe buying habits.  Keyholes, zip inserts, and satin contrast strips and bindings will continue to feature in mass casual wear emphasizing the sporty feel.(Source: "Fashion Trends 2004:  Part 1 - General Changes Affecting Textiles," by Pauline Weston Thomas)

ReHabiliments offers a line of workout gear that brings together a combination of high-end, high-tech, and unique fabrics with today's hot fashion trends.  The company's workout gear includes:

  • Workout Tops (100% Spandex)
    • Women's, Small to 3XL:  $25.00
  • Workout Bottoms (Coordinating) (100% Spandex)
    • Women's, Small to 3XL:  $35.00
  • Socks (100% Cotton)
    • Women's, Fits Up to Shoe Size 15:  $15.00
  • Jacket (Cotton/Polyester Blend)
    • Women's, Small to 3XL:  $45.00

Smart consumers are driving the performance fabrics of today.  They want products with more comfort, more durability, and more fashion, which in turn will make their lives easier.  In answer to the consumers' needs, companies such as DuPont, Milliken & Co., and Mylstar, Inc.  are developing techniques that manage moisture better, so it dries faster; improving dye-techniques to enhance color-fastness; and designing garments that keep people warm without weighing them down.  (Source:  "Arresting Odor and Moisture," by Michael Fickes, SportsEdge, December 2002)

Leather Garments

The leather motorcycle jacket is much more than a coat - it's a mentality.  From the early twentieth century, airplanes, automobiles, and motorcycles redefined freedom, idealized speed, and captured the hearts of men and women alike.  The leather jackets developed to protect pilots, racers, and motorists from the elements came to symbolize a romantic sense of rugged adventure.  In particular, motorcycle jackets maintained this ideal for decades to come.  ReHabiliments carries on this American-made tradition of the classic, leather, motorcycle jacket.

  • Motorcycle Jackets (100% Black Leather)
    • Men's/Women's, Small to 4XL:  $300.00
  • Leather Pants (100% Black Leather)
    • Men's/Women's, Small to 4XL:  $175.00

Leather jackets are the most versatile and classic article of clothing the consumer can own.  They may be extremely stylish and popular, following fashion trends from year to year, but the truth is that they are never out of style.

Consumers can find leather jackets in various shapes and sizes or different lengths (e.g., such as trench coat, knee, three quarter, and hip), depending upon the consumer's body type, height, style, and taste.  Even square-shaped, leather bomber jackets have made their return and continue to be popular.  All leather jackets are stylish.  (Source:  "The Look of Leather," by Karin Eldor, AskMen.com)

Baseball Jackets

Ever since hip-hop innovators and style aviators Outkast appeared on MTV sporting old school Houston Astros jerseys with rainbow colors and 70s flavor, the rap world has seen a trend toward old school/vintage sports apparel.  Since then, others have been seen in videos "discovering" forgotten logos and athletes.  Retail stores' shop windows of showcase styles that, by today's standards, would be considered out of place for men playing on the field.  Vibrant colors and rainbow designs that were once the norm in the seventies and eighties have been replaced with more conservative color schemes, or with shades of gray and black.

ReHabiliments carries a line of new, satin baseball jackets that mimic those worn by teams of the past.  They are made of thick, lined satin with attention to the finest details.

  • Baseball Jackets (Satin and 100% Cotton)
    • Men's/Women's, Small to 5XL:  $75.00

The love affair with the retired logo is merely another trend in hip hop's long evolution.  A sports symbol can symbolize far more than one might expect.  While wearing the traditional, current logo of a local team can still symbolize an artist's claims of his/her roots, recent styles of sporting wear attest to more than locality, signifying pure fashion for fashion's sake in an ever-changing culture.

Headgear

During the summer, fedoras and mesh caps made of natural grasses found favor among both men and women.  Another common sight was unlikely combinations of feminine clothes and baseball caps, while, as an extension of the layered look, turbans were also a hit.  This fall has witnessed the renewed popularity of the rounded, visored berets known as "caskets" that have been a conspicuous presence since last year.  Hats and caps are coming out in a variety of materials, colors, and shapes, including woolen caps with designs knitted in and hats made of furry materials like angora.

As to why hats have become entrenched as a fashion accessory over the past few years, we believe that headwear offers the easiest means of self-expression in the context of a general trend for casual fashion.  Even a person dressed in a simple outfit like pants and a T-shirt can instantly express his or her personal style just by putting on a hat.

Hats are becoming as much an integral part of young people's wardrobes as other fashion items, and ReHabiliments carries a variety of hats to suit everyone's taste.  These include:

  • Ski Hat (Wool)
    • Men's/Women's, One-Size-Fits-All:  $15.00
  • Beanie (Polyester/Cotton)
    • Men's/Women's, One-Size-Fits-All:  $12.00
  • Fitted Baseball Cap (Cotton)
    • Men's/Women's, One-Size-Fits-All:  $25.00
  • Sun Visor
    • Men's/Women's, One-Size-Fits-All:  $15.00

Hats have always combined fashion with practicality, offering protection from both the summer sun and the winter cold.  Right now, hats are experiencing a boom in popularity that has made them an essential item regardless of the season.  More and more people are wearing hats of distinctive designs that, unlike the past hat booms, are not constrained by fashion trends.  Rather than famous brand boutiques, it is specialty shops stocking hats created by daring young designers that are the forefront of the current craze.

3.2 Sourcing

Intense competition has placed garment retailers in higher income countries under constant pressure to reduce costs.  This has encouraged buyers to favor low cost countries and, in particular, to seek out locations which offer ever lower labor costs. 

Few countries today have lower labor costs than major apparel manufacturers, such as Bangladesh or India; however, this low cost labor is obtained at the expense of children.  The U.S.  Department of Labor's 1994 international child labor study, By the Sweat and Toil of Children (Volume I): The Use of Child Labor in U.S.  Manufactured and Mined Imports, catalogued existing information on child labor in the garment industries of Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Guatemala, India, Indonesia, Lesotho, Morocco, the Philippines, Portugal and Thailand.  While the report noted that more research was necessary to confirm the extent and working conditions of child workers, in some cases it stated that children were involved in the production of garments for export to the United States. 

With the exception of Bangladesh, where children regularly worked in large-scale, formal factories, the report found that children were more likely to work in small subcontracting shops or homework situations.  In some cases, children were found to work in locked shops, with armed guards preventing entrance and exit during work hours.  Children worked on tasks such as sewing buttons, cutting and trimming threads, folding, and moving and packing garments.  In small shops and homesites in the Philippines, children were also found embroidering and smocking (making pleats).  In some cases, children worked long hours sometimes six or seven days a week.  Some children received less than the minimum wage and were not paid for overtime work. 

The recent proliferation of codes of conduct can be attributed to several factors.  With media reports and exposés on child labor becoming more frequent, consumers - and therefore companies - are becoming increasingly concerned about the conditions under which the garments they purchase are made.  Companies' adoptions of codes of conduct serve to ease consumer concerns - and their own - that they may be contributing to the exploitation of child labor.  Often companies adopt codes to project a positive image and protect their brand-name or quality reputation.  Some are motivated by good intentions; some by bottom-line considerations - many by both.

As a proponent for the rights of children, ReHabiliments is extremely sensitive to obtaining goods from manufacturers that use children as their main source of labor.  As a result, management thoroughly researches its suppliers and will continue to do so until such time as the company establishes its own U.S.-based manufacturing operation.  In addition, ReHabiliments operates on codes of conduct and model business principles that ensure the safety and welfare of children, demonstrating the company's social responsibility.

ReHabiliments currently obtains its garments from three factories, as follows:

  • T-Shirt Manufacturing

226, Gokule Street
Ram Nagar, Coimbatore -641009
Tamil Nadu, India
Phone:  91-422-5584843
FAX:  91-422-4378459

  • Garment Labels

Mr. Supot Sanganunt, Managing Director
Samchai Label Industrial Co., Ltd.
Phone:  (662) 8978090-9
FAX:  (662) 8978100


  • Miscellaneous Garments

Winsor Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
No.  14, Shilan Road, Xinqiao, Panyu
Guanzhou, China

Costs for clothing articles are as follows:

  • Denim Pants:  $5.00 per garment
  • Jackets:  $5.00 per garment
  • Sweatsuits:  $7.00 per garment
  • Hats:  $150 per hat
  • Long Sleeve T-Shirts:  $1.50
  • Short Sleeve T-Shirts:  $1.00 per shirt
  • Jerseys:  $6.00 per jersey

Costs per garment vary depending upon the number of garments ordered at any given time.  Bulk shipments cost less than items ordered piecemeal.

3.3 Technology

As in other industries, technological advances, globalization, and changing business practices are affecting the apparel industry.  One significant change is the increased emphasis on quick response to customer demand.  This ability is vital in an industry that sells its products in an ever-changing, fashion-conscious market.  Quick response capability links apparel producers more closely to related firms in the textile and retail sectors of the economy.  Aided by communications technology, such as electronic data interchange, point of sale terminals, and bar codes, information is instantaneously communicated to and received from firms in these industries. 

Other technologies affecting the apparel industry include computerized equipment and material transport systems.  Computers and computer-controlled equipment aid in many functions, such as design, marking, and cutting.  Overhead conveyor systems transport material between sewing machine operators and between processes.  Despite these changes, however, the apparel industry - especially its sewing function - has remained significantly less automated than many other manufacturing industries. 

Computer aided design (CAD) is used to design anything from an aircraft to knitware.  Originally, CAD was used in designing high-precision machinery; however, in the 1970s, the technology made its entry into the textile and apparel industry.  Today, most companies abroad have integrated some form of CAD into their design and production process. 

According to the National Knitwear Association of the United States, of 228 apparel manufacturers:

  • 65% use CAD to create colorways.
  • 60% use CAD to create printed fabric design.
  • 48% use CAD to create merchandising presentations.
  • 41% use CAD to create knitwear designs.

The apparel industry traditionally has consisted of production workers who perform a specific function in an assembly line.  Increasingly, this organizational philosophy is being replaced by a team concept, in which garments are made by a group of sewing machine operators organized into production "modules."  Each operator in a module is trained to perform nearly all of the functions required to assemble a garment.  Each team is responsible for its own performance, and individuals usually receive compensation based on the team’s performance.   These changes have greatly altered the atmosphere and responsibilities from those of the traditional assembly line. 

Fierce competition from abroad has prompted these changes in work structure and technology.  Apparel firms have also responded to growing competition by merging and employing workers in other countries to perform some production functions.  Workers in lower-wage countries are increasingly being hired to assemble garments—the most labor-intensive step in the production process—whereas U.S.  workers now perform a greater share of the pre-assembly functions and coordinate the process.  Such changes in the nature of the domestic apparel industry will certainly continue as globalization proceeds. 

(Source:  U.S.  Department of Commerce, August 2000)

3.4 Future Products

ReHabiliments' long-range objectives include venturing into an apparel line for college graduates and professionals, with further opportunities in licensed and branded cologne and perfume, bedding, underwear, small leather goods, jewelry, and eyewear.  Beginning in Fall 2004, ReHabiliments will offer a line of clothing marketed as apparel to "Clothe Tomorrow's Professionals."