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Diversifying Your Product Line

Lesson 15 of 32

Color & Fabric


Diversifying Your Product Line

Lesson 15 of 32

Color & Fabric


Lesson Info

Color & Fabric

Now we're going to go into color and fabric um when I talk about color fabric when it's about fabric I'm really talking about materials as well so it's not just fabric face so color and fabric or coloring materials are a great connector absolutely perfect connector when it comes to a collection when I talk about being a connector I talk about you know building the kind of cohesive line okay they really had a very good red thread and doesn't have to be red it's just a metaphor but it's a nice red thread throughout linking everything together I now have a whole host of new er cos I found which will also kind of inspire you and give you some reference on this kind of red thread that I've just been talking about so the first one oh there's a lady called christine renna she sells on ed see she sells silk scarfs as well on dh she also has some garments that that she kind of ties in with that what's interesting about this is all the same colors but she's just used them really differently so i...

t's ah it's a silk scarf it's I think it's thirty seven by thirty seven similar similar sized what I'm thinking about it's a hand rolled edge so it's like a beautifully finished silk scarf she has something something I wouldn't want to say kind of plane but it's it's a basic a kind of pale color and she has her color is the kind of like the highlights the pops here in a regular pattern these colors of then communicated in a in a different pattern into other ah scarves but it's the same color palette you know you see these together they just said they seem to see really nicely together you can buy something very simple but you can also buy something very kind of dramatic next is she has a skinny tires skinny scarf which you can use as a kind of very simple tie or she has again the squares so it's same same pattern slightly different colors you see a kind of a continuation here the pink is the same the blue is the same she's got the yellow so it's a different use of the color on dh she's taken elements of that for the skinny version as well so you can see that you can imagine there in a store and you kind of go in warning a black scarf but then you also want to buy something kind of skinny it still has black and it can work pretty well together so a light please as examples of the way that color can really change in different scale and kind of like bring a product together so what's your experience of color that's again again it's a very open question some people are afraid of using color on some people use it have italy I mean, I tend tio, I'm wearing a pink shirt today, but this isn't like a big exception. Normally, I'm kind of like a monochrome queen on a lot of grays lot of blacks, but I'm basing now because I was from northern europe and the weather is very greater. When I moved over here, it was just like color was everywhere, and I'm like going in after one day, my war drive a little bit closet, not wardrobe. There we go. I'm still learning the american language that forgive me if I slip into something. Okay? So who's, afraid of using color? I mean, I think, um, it's it's interesting that you get some brands who really kind of go towards something very colorful in some brands use it very sparingly as a kind of like a highlight. You can definitely see that when you approach ah, you know, different companies, if I'm using the example of scarf company, um, I use fabric and color in two very different ways. Fabric for me is the red thread it's always going to be silk that's, that's the one thing which is going to unite that defined the line color is a differentiator it's taken from the concept, so this is going to change on a regular basis. I'm going to use the seasonal colors which I kind of see or inspired by and going to use that to really kind of like lift the product ok, then I go back to the board and you'll see that slightly different now because I have these colors I kind of pulled out from the different elements that we saw originally in the concept, so this is now going to be the color palette away the color scheme for my board, so I've taken the green from here you've got a pink element there also taken from part of the chinese dragon's mouth you have a purple again and then black and white I put in there because I see there's a very classic colors it's it's something that potentially can be my bottom layer of the pyramid um so when I take these colors and I dropped them into my color plan, this is what I end up with, ok? So I've taken again we're looking at exactly the same collection board that we saw before the purpose of looking at it this way is for the color, so I've taken a price out prices gone still prices still talking about the same things focusing now on color, so this is what I see it's my bottom basic line, my entry level price fifty nine sorry fifty three dollars we've got black we have white yellow, green, purple and a pink there's going to be my basics my basic and the pop colors remember these are kind of the contrast stitching I'm thinking about pink with the yellow stitch white with a purple green with a pink and white with a black so something so all of these are taken from this but they've just been at they've added something an additional element to kind of to lift it t elevate it slightly when I look at the top level, I've got the brights I have a two sided scarf here one is white, the other was pink so you you know, flip it around and you've got like a uh um strawberry raspberry pavlova thing happening around you negative kind of thinking whiteness I have no idea how I'm gonna describe this can't think of anything green and purple together but it's going to be a collective can it's probably going to be kind of retro in the tone and this I'm playing around with and I haven't really thought if this is going to work but I'm playing around with a diagonal stripe on one side and a black on the other because I just think it could be quite interesting to throw that out remember this is my aspirational line this is this is my line which is going to be like I'm going to cross my fingers and try and see how it works if it doesn't work, then have only really lost kind of maybe one or two scarves by still feel confident about this and this is where my my main bread and butter is going to come from, okay? So by taking the inspiration and by looking at this and by taking these colors, I've then dropped into my color plan and started filling out the whole process okay going back to our pyramid was starting on the whole layer in process now where everything that we studied over the last two segments we're going toe revisit in seeing how it all comes together so the color and collection plan paramedics say combined so the bottom is the basic the mid is the basic and the pop color the top is the seasonal and bright so you're mixing the three layers of color hand product in one section okay bottom layer basic styles, basic colors, mid layer basic styles, contrast colors top player patent with contrast so you can see how the buildup is happening in this case. So some people embrace brights all the time and I've got a this's a this is another great company I love their product called son of a sailor identifed guys, they've been they've been around for a while it from austin, texas um and they what I really like about them is they really put a lot of color on the jury and they also do leather wear as well which we're going to have a look at in a second but you can see how a lot of the colors combine if you're looking at these two you have the green here you have the red you have the kind of the dark blue you have the dark blue these kind of match really nicely this is the same so the using and they have a very similar aesthetic if you look at this shape here is almost identical slight shake the changing in shape but the colors tying the whole thing together it's like a cohesive collection um so this is one example of their work and other times they use it as a highlight color this is another part of their collection as well so they're seeing you have you have the pops of color you have this working with this you have this and that those colors you even have you have the kind of the pale pink working really nicely here and then the blue aspect as well so they think about the kind of the unique shapes and they think about which the colors in their power and how to use it and how to link it so that when you go to their store you see and you just think oh you know that key chain looks good and it also it kind of works in a bracelet as well you know you go in wanting a key chain you come out with a key chain and a bracelet it's like double win for the store and he was a customer so I would always consider just consider both kind of linking the materials and linking the colors when you're putting a collection together you know it may not always work but at least kind of consider it so what happens if color is in a dominant factor and you would get that with some products sometimes it isn't about color so I have I have an example what happens if my collection was called susie's black scarves and it was all about the color black because maybe you know years ago when I was about fifteen I was a god and I dressed up as sesay suit from susie in the benches and so everything was about black with may black eye black spiky hair had to be black so what happens if I'm starting a company and everything has to be black when you you have to be able to differentiate between your products because of no one's going to see it it's gonna be like a sorry texter exactly exactly so it's like making more about shaping embellishment and details were all of in color so here again it's it's it's a lamp shade in its wood you just if you say that while I make wooden lampshades are really how big c collection one this is like, no, actually, because I'm using a lot of different techniques and texture with it, it's about understanding what your product is and how to differentiate er it's, not always about color. So if I was looking up susie's black scarfs, then I would look at my interpretation of this would be using different fabric on having logical the differences and fabrics of my top level would be, you know, silk fabric, maybe with embellishment, maybe with an app, decay or embroidery on it, something like that, which would really kind of be a point of difference cost wise as well, that kind of good price value relationship, but the mid level I'd look at a kind of a cotton silk, so you still have that luxury element. But you have something a little bit more affordable and something that you can potentially print on a cz. Well, if you want to do like a tower block colonel, print this one eyed look att maybe a kind of more casual and do like a washed silk something that that's something which kind of drapes has physically, when you touch, it feels different. So that's what I would it's what I would look at if everything was the same color. So we've looked at really kind of the color being a kind of like a strong feature throughout and also fabric and also texture so depending really on your on your product in your product group there's different ways of approaching it and that's what that's what is great about building a unique line you don't using these principles is you don't have to stick to one method you have toe take what's right for your products and what in your line and make it work so we're getting tio question now so colors or fabrics more dominant in your product taking one or both start to build a simple three layers of pyramid to show the differentials ok which is ah a fun task it's a brainstorming task for sure let's cancel that throw this out to the chat room chris I see what we get from there so you know really first when he decided colors or fabrics your main differentiator on it'll it can be both but it could just be one so um actually what would you say your differentiator is? Um I think color my products are very colorful and they're all made with cotton and then a cotton laminate on the interior so the material writes itself is the same you have the colors are all very different in contrast ing right right katherine colors and like the number of colors and a design goes up what the price and I forgot the other thing I was going to say ok like I know we can come back to that um chris would you have well we have people who are talking about how they use colors paintings by kate gilmore says green and purple or colors that that she uses regularly that refer to purple flowers like wisteria, lilac, et cetera she works really well with that and read scorpio as your name may indicate, uses red and sticks to just one color and kind of makes that really they're they're differentiating factors so it seems like color is really what most of the people in the chat room are focusing on right? Okay, interesting number how d how do you work what's your different racing doctor um so instead of fabric it's paper you know, but the paper that we use for letterpress printing tends to be lofty and tends to have a lot of texture to it because it takes the impression so it almost feels more like fabric that it does paper right? But then my main thing is through the process of becoming a letter press printer is using the press to determine what I can and can't do so it starts from production versus I used to approach it more as a designer, right? And then you kind of paint yourself into a bit of a corner and you have to solve a lot of problems yeah so what create what starts officer kind of like kind of a great development process right can't actually be produced exactly reduction limitations exactly so if you start looking at it what is the press d'oh then there's all these amazing things that a letter press can do that your digital press or your offset presses can't dio right so then you become you start to tail the tailor your lines around all these amazing process is that letter on ly letter press continue on ly letter press skin you know print in a certain way can give you that texture of that impression so papers of big thing and really with color for letterpress printing the interesting thing is it tends to be on ly one to two colors three color letter process like a really big deal okay severus thing yeah so you're really you're have almost I'm going to reverse engineer the whole process and figure out you know what also can I you know, physically produce with how is that going a different shape but they're different back and it's interesting coming from a design background which is what my degree was in and I just happened to let her press print in college and enjoy it yeah so I came out it is a designer then into a bunch of problems that I'd made for myself right and then started to realize ok, well what is the tool that I have and what are all these amazing things I can produce with this tool? And then that kind of victory down a totally different road? That's. Great. I like the I like the idea of having to kind of problem solve around a kind of like, uh, the end production problem having to work back it's really interesting, and now I'm dealing a lot with half tones. Ok, which is how they used to print, you know, letterpress printing was kind of the way they started, how printing started and a half tone is how they would produced a photograph, right. So with a half tone, you can actually get many, many colors shades, rather by just using one ink so you can use one color blue, but you can get several different variations of that blew through one pass on the press. That's. Fascinating. Yeah, we're going to talk about this in the break. We need to pick your brains on the chris. You have anything else share? Yeah, we have some people who are actually charming in now about textures and fabrics. Sandra. Glover clark says, I use different crow shea stitches that differentiate my hats. So, for instance, she's, using crocodile stitches a lot these days, that seemed very popular. Yeah, I've never heard of a crocodile, said, yeah, I'm not familiar with crocodile stitches, either, but she says that she uses different crow state crow, shea stitches to differentiate, so sometimes we'll use the crocodile for one hat in different states for another hat. So it's, a good way to to show a different product. Nice. Okay, interesting, I have to be the last one.

Class Description

Once you’ve established your business with a single, successful product, imagining what else to sell can be daunting. You don’t want to end up with a disjointed collection of products, but you do want it to be fresh and exciting for existing customers. In Diversifying Your Product Line, you’ll learn the art and science of expanding your offerings and growing your business.

Susie Breuer is the author of Blue is the New Black: The 10 Step Guide to Developing and Producing a Fashion Collection and in this class she’ll help you generate ideas and make smart decisions about expanding your apparel and/or accessories business. You’ll learn how to:

  • Research the market to understand both price and your customers.
  • Build a concept and action plan for starting out
  • Manage multiple product lines
  • Source raw materials and manufacturers

You’ll learn how to accurately assess a product's viability before you waste time and money developing it. Susie will also teach you how to develop a consistent, logical pricing strategy you can use again and again.

Susie makes the complex process of developing a financially solvent product and production plan easy. You’ll get expert-level insights into all aspects of developing a new product and walk away confident that you know everything you need to know to expand your business.



Thank you for an excellent class on a key pivot point no matter what industry you are in. One stellar quality of this course is how collaborative, friend focused peer culture and (rather than hostile competition or dysfunction competition environment and psychological atmosphere). The structure suggestions enable creativity and acknowledges different mindsets required in different phases. Susie honors the joy that comes from making and creating. She celebrates the interdependence between all stakeholders and the fun and flow as well as learnings and choices from being a 'business'. She is pragmatic but high on the inclusiveness of fun and satisfaction. She is interested and interesting: safe, enjoys being a customer as much as teacher and expressions of creative generation for herself. You can be caught up in the delight of her view of the world if you have become jaded or burnout. This brings perspective and empowerment to your desire and goals.


Susie has this most amazing experience in business - she is fashion royalty - but has an amazing ability to put all her knowledge across in a way that you can learn so easily. I was so pleased that she could show you how to learn from her experience and it would make sense for your business. Pretty much whatever you are doing. I came away from these sessions with so many ideas. But of course ideas are cheap. She has made me understand how once you have an idea, how to make it real. So many great learnings about avoiding pitfalls, practical check lists and honest to goodness 'know how'. I am already putting her advice into practice and can see I am going to transform my business just because of these classes. I am going to come back to those videos again and again. Thank you so much for making this great resource available.


I LOVED THIS COURSE. After being a small business owner for 10 years it is easy to focus on what's right on your desk at that very moment instead of evaluating the bigger picture, to forget how to look at what is working as well as what isn't and how to improve upon your process. Courses like this make me want to jump up out of my seat and get back to work. Susie kept me engaged and focused. It can be a long day but time seemed to fly by. I am really glad I got the opportunity to take the course, not only would I take it again but would highly recommend future Creative Live courses and Susie's latest book. Thank you again for the opportunity and now I gotta get back to work!