So you have got a great bag design idea ?

You have drawings of a bag Design, and you may already have a ‘Tech-Pack’ as well ?

Well now you think that the next step is you want to find somebody to make your bag prototype for you.

If this is the case you may be missing a critical point.

We get a lot of enquiries like this so here is how we look at this sort of enquiry.

In the last few years there has been a huge growth in online freelancers who offer to do designs and tech packs for really low prices from all over the world.

We are all in favour of international trade and reducing costs of product development, but what starts out as ‘cheap’ can actually get more expensive.

The most expensive thing you can pay for is a sample prototype bag that is not actually a good design and has been made from a tech pack specification that is amateurish.

The cost of your first prototype is:

  • Design cost.
  • Tech Pack cost.
  • Prototype making cost.
  • Shipping cost.
  • Duty fees.
  • Time taken – which can be months.

So if your tech pack and design is not good there are a lot of costs in time and money….

If you get a online designer / tech pack maker to create your precious design then ask yourself these questions;

  • Has your design been done by a design professional – who lives and breathes in your target market, with at least 10 years experience? Less than 10 years and they are still learning.
  • Have you had good design advice or has the designer just gone along with everything you say you want? If so – be careful…..
  • Has your Tech Pack been created by somebody with actual sewing factory experience? Have they ever actually cut a paper pattern, cut the fabric and made a sample themselves – or are they in fact just ‘computer jockeys’? Yes they may have great online reviews… but did the people who wrote those reviews know much about what they were buying?! Buyer beware!

So lets just check back now on your actual design…..

We see a lot of designs that are poorly thought through – that just look like other things in the marketplace with little that is special about them. Maybe they have a special pocket or a special compartment and they would be ideal for the customer you have in mind.

BUT does it look ‘ideal, memorable and special’ and perfect for purpose in the few seconds it’s going to be viewed online?

What is the point of making such things? Sorry that’s tough – but no we do not apologise for saying there is no point in investing in creating new products – maybe even for a new brand if it ends up being a ‘me too’ product.

Bag Design Tech Packs

A ‘tech pack’ sounds great doesn’t it? But if it does not fully explain itself to somebody whose first language is not English and is just flat CAD views without good sewing information – the factory is likely to just make something that looks a bit like it – rather than respecting the exact details in the tech – pack.

Maybe you even have a 3D animation – and you can see all sides of the product – but it looks more like a plastic box than a fabric bag?

This will mean little to a textile factory to be honest, they make fabric things not plastic things.

You don’t believe this writer? Well we just had a good example – our lovely customer spent some two months getting a sample prototype bag made. But when they got the bag back the factory had completely ignored the instructions for the shoulder straps, the external zip pockets, the adjustable webbing straps, the padding in the back, and the materials etc etc. An expensive journey that did not save them money. It’s most often cheaper to use a skilled experienced professional from the outset.

The point is, even if you do have a good tech pack the factory can be quite wilful and make something like ‘what they have made before’ rather than what the tech pack says.

So this problem is not about the design or the tech pack – it’s about sample factory management.

Sample Factory Management

We charge for this service so read on and see why….

Online portals like AliBaba are great resources. But beware – they are really just lists of factories who want to sell you what they have already got. They are not a short list of factories that specialise in custom jobs for you.

In fact they only care about big sales numbers. If you are a small business or even a start up really they are not that interested in you. We can bridge that gap bringing credibility to your plans.

It is the small details that count and only a quality factory who listen to what we tell them to make, will do that reliably for you.

So how do we make sure the factory’s we work with will make the prototype properly?

We make a tech pack that has lots of clear information and we use pictures drawn by hand of all views of the bag – even more than we use CAD computer drawings.

What is the difference? A flat CAD technical drawing is great for accurate technical flat front, back, side views. BUT it is not good to explain how a bag is actually made, what seam fits in where, how that zip is finished at the ends, how that pocket works and how the fabric will behave and how the zip goes around that corner etc etc.

This is why we do tech packs with lots of hand-done drawings from different angles to explain exactly what the design should be like. We rely more on pictures than words. And when we use words we often say the same instruction in different ways with extra pictures to make sure they understand. With years of experience we know the areas that factory’s will often miss or not take care of unless they are told too….

Then sometimes if the bag shape is critical we also arrange to get a paper card model made as well to check the shape.

Card model made to check the bag shape before cutting and sewing fabric.

At the end of the day it’s all about people, precision, determination and communication experience. We know about textile products and have over 30 years experience of design and making products. We have had enough experience to have learnt the hard way from them!

So when we work with a factory we communicate with them every day – get lots of photo’s and even video’s of the bag in making, and we never give up working towards making the prototypes as good as possible first time.

And yes – it’s almost inevitable that the first prototype will need refining before production. This is normal – but lets start out the right way to make the prototype sample journey as short and efficient as possible.

Making a commercial product is what this job is all about.

It’s a serious job and we offer to help customers get their products right – from design to specification to manufacture so they can create their dreams and business opportunities.

In summary:

  • Check with a design and marketing professional that your bag idea will be appealing.
  • Make sure the tech pack ( bag specification) is clear, produce able and well explained.
  • Use a professional to source and manage the prototype manufacture with a sympathetic factory.

If you would like to discuss your design idea or the tech pack you already have you are welcome to contact us for a free 20 minute consultation. If it looks perfect we will tell you, and if we think there are problems we will tell you honestly what we think. Then you can decide on your next steps.

Email: Telephone: 01531-640118. WhatsApp: 07785350538