On-Demand Production is the Future
What is fast-fashion?
The advent of social media and manufacturing advances enabled the industry to shift to the fast-fashion model. Brands started to observe customer preferences and trends in “real-time” and use this information to design product on a shorter timeline increasing the variety of units manufactured every year and offering consumers the opportunity to buy the latest trends within a few months (as opposed to needing to wait for a year). This meant brands needed to create more styles more often and manufacture lower quantities of each unit: “more breath and less depth”. The speed to market resulted in lowered product quality, increased discounting, reliance on inexpensive synthetic fabrics, and contributed to the growth of discarded clothing in landfills.
What is on-demand production and why does it make sense?
The on-demand production model is quite straightforward. Brands manufacture product as it is demanded by the consumer instead of forecasting demand and manufacturing a large inventory in hopes it would sell. It makes sense because it:
Reduces demand uncertainty
Under this model, you manufacture what your customers sign up to buy and you eliminate the need to forecast and make quality concessions because you don’t know how much of your product you’ll be able to move.
Very importantly, on-demand production eliminates the need to discount or discard inventory. It supports an emphasis on quality and “intentional” as opposed to “impulsive” shopping where consumers invest in quality clothing that will last as opposed to cheap clothing they buy on a whim to virtually discard after a few wears.
Enables small-batch production cycles
While at Santicler we focus on timeless clothing, the on-demand model allows us to be responsive to our customer base and pivot when we see our customers would prefer something slightly different. This supports our customer-centricity and enables us to truly create investment pieces our customers will be proud to wear.
At Santicler our on-demand production model is direct-to-consumer and online. We cut out the middle-man and offer a luxury product at a lower cost. While the cost of manufacturing on-demand is higher, it doesn’t prevent us from bringing our customers the highest quality product that is sustainably made. This is the future of fashion and with each collection, we are improving our operations and speed to market.
Thank you for reading, Monica