We would love to invite you to our behind-the-scenes journey! Sharing the steps we take from the first collection idea to the collection launch.
To stay on time, we have many different processes in place and would love to share them with you!
From start to finish, it takes approximately one year to create a collection and as I like to say “we’re the complete opposite of fast fashion”, where fast fashion pieces are released every two weeks.
Market Research and Planning
To start each collection, I start with sourcing inspiration! I usually have a few ideas and narrow them down to one.
I might be inspired by a movie I have seen or past eras. Past eras certainly play a big role in our collection’s inspiration. I love finding old photos, whether that be family members or celebrities and seeing what clothing they would wear and how they would wear it. Especially movies made in the 50s – 80s, I can’t take my eyes off of their clothes!
I create a mood board from my chosen inspiration
A fashion mood board is a collage that creates a visual summary of inspirational images colours, objects, material swatches, and trims. The inspiration can be anything that takes us on a creative journey like a theme or a place, like Costa Del Sol or Miami in the 80s. Once I’m happy with my mood board creation, I feel confident in the direction of the collection and can start fabric sourcing!
By visiting fabric markets, we can see and feel all of the fabrics in front of us! This is my favourite way to fabric source as it’s very time efficient and I just love being there with so many fabrics to sift through and feel one by one.
We take into consideration; whether it can be dyed, the texture or the fabric, if it has stretch and the GSM which is basically the weight of the fabric.
We take a lot of sample cards, so when we start the designing process, we have all the fabric swatches to then match our designs!
As we don’t always have the option to travel and visit the fabric markets, we will often order online and check our previously sourced fabric swatches. Our fabric swatches never get discarded and we are building a quite comprehensive fabric library.
First I look to my mood board and the inspiration I’ve chosen for the collection. This is so all the designs stay cohesive and look like a collection. I have two techniques for sketching
1. Draping fabric over a mannequin, cutting and creating rough outfits, taking photos of the creations on the mannequin and sketching them up
2. Sketching from ideas I have in my mind! I often come up with ideas for new outfits, whether that be in the shower, before I go to bed or at any random moment, so having a sketch pad around is always key!
Once I have (A LOT) of designs, I cut down the collection to our magic number of outfits (this varies with each collection). Once I have all of my favourite designs in front of me, we go through each and every look to see how we can elevate it (closures, trims, new design lines etc).
Once I’m happy with the sketches, I put together a tech-pack. A tech-pack is a document that consists of every little detail our factory needs to create the design. I create a CAD (computer-aided design) from my sketches, these are professional images I create on my computer via Adobe Illustrator. See the photo below for reference.
The remainder of the tech-pack is extremely detailed (even detailing where the care labels should be sewn) and can take up to a month to create all the tech-packs.
Prints and Colours
Print strike off: Refers to print samples
If I have a particular idea for a print, I will send my ideas in the form of a creative brief to our very talented graphic designer. She then creates a few print ideas based on the brief (and nails it every time!). Every print we do is unique to Remi.
Once we have confirmed the winning design and the size of the print we choose our Pantone colours! (which is much easier said than done)
What can sometimes look great in our Pantone book with 2cm colour swatches, can look very different on a larger piece of clothing.
For example, our Marigold print consists of three colours, which would sound easy to most but it took eight different tries to perfect the print colouring until we were happy.
Once we have the print, size and colours perfected our fabric dyers start creating!
Lab dips: Refer to colour samples
We send our dyers a few different colour options, we receive lap dips, choose our favourite colour and start dying the fabric!
From the tech pack, our lovely sewing ladies make our first samples! Very rarely are the first samples perfect, especially if it’s a more complicated or fitted design.
We test the fit, fabric and wearability. Sometimes what looks good on paper, doesn’t look great when it’s made up!
From there we decide to find what’s missing on that piece or leave it out of the collection.
We can sample up to 3 to four times just to get it right!
Testing the garments:
I wear each sample for a day, by doing this, I can see every little thing that works and doesn’t work, then make changes accordingly.
Testing the fabric:
We test each one of our fabrics for pilling, stretch, strength, shrinkage and abrasion resistance
From there it’s costings time, this can take a while! If the garments are too expensive or we think the value is not there we likely won’t proceed with the garment.
Once we receive our final samples, it’s photoshoot time!
We always try and get creative with our shoots and have worked with some amazing talent these last few years.
I start off with an idea (in line with the collection inspiration) and create my storyline and run sheet. My run sheet is a breakdown of the whole photoshoot so we don’t forget anything and stay on time. My run sheet typically includes;
- Time to shoot each look
- What model is wearing the outfit
- Hair and makeup
- What outfit we are shooting
- What styling + accessories go with the look
- What type of images do we need for each look (Front, back, side, feature image, style image etc)
- Props for each look
- And a lot more!
I have to be very well organised as I do all the lifestyle photography myself, but I usually have an assistant helping out otherwise it would be chaos.
I’ve had to learn photography as when starting a business, you’re a jack of all trades! Now it’s something I love and will continue photographing our campaigns.
If we are creating a video for the campaign, this is also added to the run sheet! Although this time, it’s even more detailed.
Initially, I start with a storyline and then divide that story up into scenes. Each scene on the run sheet has a time limit (so we don’t go over the shoot time), characters and directions for each scene so the video can be put together with a clear vision of the storyline.
When we first created Remi, I was creating the videos myself but have given that over to professional videographers. I can see the difference… sometimes you’ve just got to pass on what you’re not good at, I’ll stick to directing.
Once the photoshoot is complete, I will use the images to make a lookbook that consists of images, descriptions and the collection feel.
Once the samples photos are ready to go, we will then place our bulk order with our lovely factory in Bali, this can take a few months
The photos will then be uploaded to the designated items on our website in draft mode, ready for launch when the bulk production arrives!