As consumers continue to educate themselves on where the products they buy come from and most importantly, who makes them, the demand for sewn goods to be made in the U.S.A. will continue to grow. Here in Seattle, we have a unique opportunity to foster the growth of urban manufacturing in the sewn goods sector by pairing qualified sewers with independent designers and brands who need products made that are ethically sourced and locally produced. For the city, this means the creation of jobs which will, in turn, stimulate the economy. For the fashion community, this growth means greater access to small-scale production that is currently only available in New York, L.A., or overseas. The development of the sewn goods sector in Seattle also means access to sewers who can produce full sample runs to share with sales reps and the ability to quickly reorder best-selling products. This development is a game changer for the Seattle fashion community when it comes to access and speed-to-market.
To address these gaps in the market, Seattle Good Business Network, a local non-profit organization, has launched Seattle Sewn, a new initiative in collaboration with Muses to revitalize Seattle's sewn good industry. Together they will provide apparel production training and job placement services, along with a freelance studio for skilled sewers, to lay the foundation for a thriving and sustainable sewn goods industry in Seattle.
Since November of 2015, Seattle Sewn has trained over 50 low-income immigrants and refugees as commercial sewers, completed research on successful sewn-goods industries in other U.S. cities, mapped the initial state of the sewn goods sector in Seattle, connected hundreds of industry players via an online platform to collaborate and share resources, and created curriculum for advanced training with local manufacturer Outdoor Research.
Why bring back apparel production to Seattle?
- Quality Control
- Visibility in the supply chain
- Ability to do smaller production runs and/or sample runs
- Shorter production lead times
- Reduced transportation costs
- Ability to respond to fashion trends that are doing well in the market
- Intellectual property rights protection
- Oversight over social compliance policies
- Increased brand value
- Reduced environmental impact
Gossip & Glamour is pleased to announce our participation on the 2017 Seattle Sewn Advisory Board. We are thrilled to lend our fashion industry experience to this vital project that will help support and sustain the local fashion industry.
A fundraiser for Seattle Sewn will be held on June 6th at The Riveter on Capitol Hill. Please sign up for the Gossip & Glamour mailing list to learn more.