Attract Fashion Influencers with Specialized Services (Part 1)

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(Photo: © iStockphoto/pashyksv)

Diana Vollmer |

SAN FRANCISCO — Several times each year, in style centers around the world, designers and their fans gather for the unveiling of the newest designs on the fashion runways.

Fashion devotees range from the mega-wealthy wearing one-of-a-kind haute couture to mass-market purchasers. Their buying power may differ, but they have in common that they all want to look their best and to have their clothing fit like it was custom-made for them. They also want and need you to protect the significant investment they have made in their apparel.

These “vogue disciples” are important to your success since they are the influencers whose style and advice can sway many prospects and send them your way.

This fall, the key runway trends included ever more black and white, sometimes accented with a pop of vibrant color. Frills, lace and mesh detailing, as well as cutout backs and sides, were also prevalent. Retro maxi dresses, pinafores and crop tops added a juvenile playful tone, especially when trimmed with silver ribbon detail. Billowy tulle and silk contributed a touch of the bohemian.

These styles may already be hitting your inventory, and you are giving them the expert TLC they need to stay in like-new condition. They often require careful pre-testing, delicate spotting, deft pressing technique and supportive (always attractive) packaging. Your fabricare skills are much appreciated by the fashion-focused because you keep them looking the part of style guru.

Beyond your essential expert professional care, there are many additional ways to attract this customer segment to your services.

Some of the services that go outside traditional apparel cleaning and pressing will instill loyalty and create raving fans who will tell their friends, families and colleagues how wonderful you are.

Your imagination can expand the possibilities but some wardrobe services include:

  • Storage, which can be seasonal or longer
  • Photography for insurance and/or image planning purposes
  • Detailed cataloging of collections for insurance or event appearance scheduling purposes
  • Management, including full fabricare, transportation and documentation
  • Preservation for archiving or future availability for events or persons currently known or unknown
  • Delivery and/or pick-up to/from the client’s temporary or permanent location

An extremely crucial service that will solidify the fashion leader loyalty is expert tailoring that incorporates:

  • Alterations to a current wardrobe that are needed due to weight gains or losses, changing hemlines, trends that are more fitted or less form-fitting, or reuse by a younger family member.
  • Customization of new purchases are particularly popular because a newly purchased garment moves immediately to favored status and clients will pay a premium for expedited alterations. While-you-wait hems are a prime example of a quick alteration that can delight a client because they can wear the purchase immediately.
  • Modifications to special occasion garments, of which bridal is the most obvious, but life events occur at all ages from christening through old age. Think of the effort made to appear fit at school reunions or the desire to fit into the old uniform for a gathering of comrades.
  • Creation of a new garment utilizing a beautiful fabric or trim from a vintage one.
  • Creation of a custom garment from design to reality.

Check back Thursday for the conclusion!

About the author

Diana Vollmer

Methods for Management (MFM) Inc.

Managing Director

Diana Vollmer is managing director of Methods for Management (MFM) Inc., a consultancy specializing in drycleaning businesses. You may contact her at dvollmer@mfmi.com, 415-577-6544.

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