Designer-Quality Clothing Without the High Price
What determines the price of clothing?
Textile and Material
Cotton is the most common fabric used in T-shirts. But, according to design academics Margaret Bishop and Preeti Gopinath, there are various kinds of cotton. The price of a T-shirt is affected by the cotton used in it.
This term refers to the individual fibers of a yarn that make up a cloth. Longer fibers provide a smoother, stronger fabric. Higher-grade cotton costs more, therefore clothing made of it will cost more.
Cotton is produced all throughout the globe, and certain kinds are more expensive than others. For example, pima cotton, prized for its long staple, can only be grown in hot, dry regions. That makes pima cotton scarce and more costly.
Some cotton cultivars are branded. For example, Supima is a brand of pima cotton produced solely in America. The marketing expenses associated with these brand names add to the material’s cost.
Cotton fibers are processed in various ways. For example, most cotton is carded before being twisted into yarn. After carding, some cotton is combed to eliminate the short fibers. Combed cotton creates a smoother, more expensive yarn than uncombed cotton.
Organic cotton is more expensive to cultivate.
Merchants pass all of these costs on to consumers. But combining cotton and synthetic fibers like polyester makes it cheaper. According to HuffPost, designer T-shirts aren’t always made of the best cotton. Unlabeled designer T-shirts may include pima or organic cotton. However, inexpensive T-shirts, like those from H&M, are likely made of inferior cotton.
Labor expenses vary greatly across nations. Even at the minimal pay of $7.25 per hour, garment workers in the US outperform their counterparts in India and Bangladesh. ****
Standards of health and safety are also lower. In 2013, a Bangladeshi textile factory collapsed, killing over 1100 employees. It wasn’t a fluke. In 2016, the Phuket News found that textile manufacturers throughout Bangladesh were similarly hazardous.
Cheap T-shirts like H&M or Forever 21 are almost entirely produced in these nations, thus labor expenses are minimal. Designer goods are frequently produced in Europe, where labor prices are greater.
But not all designer labels manufacture in Europe. Gucci and Prada, for example, have been alleged to covertly outsource manufacturing to China, concealing the “made in China” logo in an inner pocket. Hermes and Louis Vuitton freely confess to employing employees in underdeveloped nations.
It is important to note that a designer label does not mean well-paid or treated employees.
SpectraUSA proudly manufactures all of their product in North America. All garments are designed in California, where their textiles are knit and dyed. SpectraUSA engineers then cut, sew and finish every piece of clothing in Baja, Ensenada.
Manufacturing site affects more than simply labor cost. It also impacts import taxes and delivery costs to customers in the US. There is no import tax on shirts from countries that have a free trade agreement with the US. If not, the tax may be 20% or more. Retailers incorporate it in the final shirt price.
Prices are affected by shipping expenses. Shipping shirts from Mexico, Central America, or Haiti to the US is considerably cheaper than from China, India, or Bangladesh. Because labor expenses are so cheap in these nations, even with transportation, the total cost to the producer may be lower.
Because SpectraUSA is a local supplier, they provide quick turnaround times and reduced shipping expenses. Speed-to-market is a top priority for SpectraUSA.
SpectraUSA’s model is to stock large quantities of popular garments, allowing them to rapidly produce and replenish inventory as new orders roll in. This also means that SpectraUSA does not compromise the quality of their manufacturing in order to produce product quickly. SpectraUSA has a 3-4 week standard turnaround time for orders.
According to the Huffington Post report, luxury clothing often cost more because producers utilize better materials. But it isn’t always so. According to a 2019 Insider story, fast-fashion clothing is typically more durable than luxury clothing.
SpectraUSA chooses Ring-spun cotton over loosely, spun cotton. The latter is cheaply produced and can often feel coarse. Ring-spun cotton is softer and feels heavier even when the material is actually lighter and more comfortable.