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Wolf vs Goat Appreciation Thread

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by falathar, Oct 6, 2015.

  1. irbe

    irbe Senior member

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    I'm guessing the final tee will be different in terms of the neck? Was suppose to be a rib neck right?
     
  2. NotClever

    NotClever Senior member

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    It seems incredibly shitty that factories will bump orders back just because a bigger client came around. In my line of work that would just get your ass fired and blackballed.
     
    1 person likes this.
  3. bamgrinus

    bamgrinus Senior member

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    I think it's just how Italy is. A lot of the labels don't own their own production and they bid it out. If Canali or whoever comes to you and wants 20,000 units, you're not going to put it at risk for the guy getting 25 units. I get bummed out by the delays, but Mauro really does put out great product, and I guess I'm willing to deal with a few headaches and delays for that. But it does mean I can't put all my eggs in one basket. Like I have one flannel on order...but I've also bought 2 or 3 from Gitman in the mean time because I know I'll get them in a few days.
     
  4. Todd Shelton

    Todd Shelton Member

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    Getting bumped or pushed back happens all the time in this industry. Factories give brands a ship date, the brand gives the customer that date (probably even pad it some to be safe). If a factory misses that date, the brand looks bad - even when it wasn't their fault. A factory being a month late is not uncommon. The only way around it, for a smaller brand, is to own your factory like you mentioned with Gitman, or heavily pad your ship date - which could hurt sales because customers may not want to wait 12 weeks. Dealing with production delays might be the most frustrating part of running a brand, it's a labor of love imo.
     
  5. Klemins

    Klemins Senior member

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    It's many industries - when there's a beef shortage, you bet your ass suppliers fulfill McDonalds orders before a small independent restaurant's (which has resulted in chains randomly getting pretty high quality beef for cheap in the past).

    But I don't just mean production delays - the ombre dye jobs, the shoes, etc., were just screwed up from what Mauro said.
     
  6. NotClever

    NotClever Senior member

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    I'm just wondering how this isn't handled by contracts, though I know nothing about Italian contract law. I feel like I would contract for a specific production deadline, and the contract would probably include concessions for unforeseeable delays, but would not allow my order to get bumped simply because someone more important wanted it bumped.

    But I'm sure there's something I'm missing.
     
  7. chupas

    chupas Senior member

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    Well there's this little thing called bargaining power.
     
  8. Todd Shelton

    Todd Shelton Member

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    If a small brand gets tough with a factory, they might be told to "take a hike". Being a good communicator is a must in these situations. Big brands have the leverage to "charge back" a percent of invoice for late deliveries.
     
  9. Mauro

    Mauro Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    @Todd Shelton, What's up! How are things with you? I saw an article in the NY Times featuring you, congrats.


    The Italians don't give a fuck about anything but other Italians and themselves. They don't honor any contract that can't be used against them. The courts are backed up for literally 10 years, meaning you can sue someone but you won't get any kind of response from your court date for about 10 years. Here is an example-

    Canali signed an 11 year contract with the factory I am using. The factory switched facilities. They took out a 2 million euro loan to pay for the new facility so they could grow their business with Canali.
    If the factory didn't uphold the contact Canali would do one of two things.

    A. Not pay for the late goods or B. Cancel the contract.

    This puts Canali in a great position. Canali now controls the factory.

    The factory needs money, even though Canali gives them a healthy business. They take on smaller clients, like myself who want to make 100 to 500 shirts a month. The small customers don't have the leverage like Canali. The factory will purposely delay a small designer that complains or will simply not make the goods. If that's not bad enough, they will try to keep your fabric and will refuse to give you your patterns back. These are patterns you paid for and created!!

    The factory also charges the small company more to make their shirts but at least that's understandable.

    This happens in the U.S. as well but not to the same degree as in Italy. Being late is fashionable, in the fashion industry.

    Another example.

    If I were to use "gitman" to make my shirts, do you really think gitman would stop their production to make 100pcs for me? Hell no, they would finish their production first and then complete mine. If I complained they would simply say " Sorry " or " It's not the right fit for our company. They wouldn't offer a discount or free shipping.
    This is why Gitman does collabs or you only can use their fabrics and patterns. This same rule applies for just about all the large shirt makers in the states, New England Shirt Makers work the same way.

    You have to find a very small factories that depend on you.

    Todd Shelton is one of the few designers who I know, that literally makes everything in house. For a time we shared a small factory in Ohio but his orders were delayed by that factories bigger clients and I was a bigger client, lol. Todd opened up his own factory. I don't have that kind of money.

    NOTHING and I mean nothing upsets me worse than delays. Any frustration you have compound that by 1000 and that's how I feel.

    Think about this. If I could prevent delays, my business would be KILLER. I would have a steady flow of incredibly high quality merchandise, that was available to my customers in a very respectable amount of time. My clients would wait and would be happy, I would be happy and everything would be fine. Hell, it would be better than fine because my business would grow faster and I would be able to negotiate better deals with the mills and factories.
    Instead, I am losing clients due to delays. Nik Telford was a good client. He was a pre-order regular. Now, he is gone. Maybe he will by a tee shirt on a whim. He is not the only one. There are probably a couple hundred just like him.
    I am not sure if I can win his patronage back or the couple hundred like him. However, if I could think about the units I could be making. The units still aren't Canali numbers but the units are still very very healthy.

    On a side note Canali makes about 250,000 units annually with the current factory I am using compared to my 1,000.

    I am really sorry about the delays in Italy. I am really working hard to make things right but this is no easy task, however it will and can be done. It's actually started. The lounge pants are a perfect example.

    The initial delays were beyond aggravating. I went to 3 different factories before I found the factory that made them. She finished all 78 units in 6 weeks. This is amazing because 10 days were set aside for dying and transportation for the dye house to the factory. 7 days were shipping to the states.

    I am doing my best to get every factory to hit the 6 week deadline mark. What does this 6 weeks consist of? Let me break this down for you. This might help you understand the business a little better.

    The 6 weeks starts when the complete order is submitted with fabric and trims.

    The first thing is a sample needs to be made followed by shrink tests. The sample might take one to 3 days to make. The shrink test will take about a week, more so for transport than anything else.

    Once the shrink test is finished a pattern correction needs to be made. If the pattern maker is "in house" that's a day or two. If the pattern maker is not "in house" give yourself a week for sure.

    When the corrected pattern returns another sample should be made, one to two days and then production can begin. Depending on the volume it should take about 1 week to 10 days to complete all the units, assuming the quantities are low like mine.

    After production is finished, off to the dye house. That's a solid week at the least. When dye is finished the goods go back to the factory for finishing. Finishing is pressing, cutting loose threads, final QC, etc..
    Then it's packaged. After packing shipping starts. Shipping in Italy might take a few days before the goods are actually shipped. This is because Italy has a fucked up system. The mafia, general fraud, and high taxes are to blame.
    When the courier picks up the package, it generally takes about 7 days to air the goods to me. Once I receive them, I count the units out, add them to inventory, take pictures, and ship.

    When you add up all these steps, it takes a lot of time. In a perfect world it should take less than 6 weeks, but we don't live in a perfect world. 95% of the factories ship late for whatever reason and that's how things are done.

    The majority of the wool and wool blends have shipped. You will find them more than amazing. The yummy tees finish dye today. The factory doesn't package or press like the Italians. I will pick them up on Tuesday and start shipping. I believe even with some of the "yummy" delays the time frame was very respectable.

    The thermals have finished being sewn and should be going into dye. These thermals are sick. The fabric is absurdly nice. The hand sewn placket is a great touch.

    @Klemins -I sincerely feel if you don't give a shit about the finer details WvG isn't your brand. You can buy a really nice pant, shirt, or whatever from any SF approved company.
    I don't want to see you leave but it's the use of traditional hand sewing, the better of the better fabrics, and great pricing that separates us from the pack. The pack being any designer brand to J.Crew or Banana Republic.

    Thank you for the support and like always you can call or email me if you need questions answered.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
    8 people like this.
  10. taint it sweet

    taint it sweet Senior member

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    Thanks for the update. Are the "not so basic" shirts considered thermals? I still haven't heard about those or beanies in notifications.
     
  11. Todd Shelton

    Todd Shelton Member

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    Hi Mauro. It's great to see WvG growing! Love that you're staying committed to the craftsmanship that makes clothing rewarding - so many brands are in a race to the bottom (price). Next time you're in NYC - and have a little time - stop into the factory and let's talk shop. Maybe it's time to think about opening a WvG factory. :)
     
  12. Mauro

    Mauro Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Nope. Not so basics aren't thermal. Hit me up with an email.
     
  13. Mauro

    Mauro Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Todd, that would be a dream or it could be a real nightmare, lol. I need to pick up about 500 yards of PFD oxford from an old shirt maker, I will let you know when I am around. Thanks for the good words. It looks like you are doing well ! Congrats. I really like your website. I think that's the next project I need to tackle after I get production in order.

    Let's stay in touch. Have your spoken to Chris, lately?
     
  14. Todd Shelton

    Todd Shelton Member

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    Great, looking forward to it. Yes, I speak with Chris a couple of times a year, mostly just keeping in touch. I like her. She's sweet and makes a nice shirt, thank god for little factories like hers.
     
  15. Mauro

    Mauro Senior member Affiliate Vendor

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    Yah, It's people like Chris that keep the light alive. I need to start making shirts with her again. She does make a great shirt.
     
  16. Klemins

    Klemins Senior member

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    @Mauro Not trying to get into a big argument over this. We've discussed the same thing in the past, and you even admitted that the majority of your customers care most about fit and construction (quality) more than little details like a handsewn placket. That said, I appreciate those kinds of things; however, when it's being applied to something like a henley that's going to primarily be used for layering, I'd far rather have the garment sooner than wait another several weeks (or months) so it could have those kinds of details.

    And I agree, just like NotClever, I'm no longer going to do pre-orders with WvG, if anything. It just doesn't make sense. It still boggles my mind that you're doing production in Italy as a 1 man show, which makes it exponentially easier for them to fuck you over. 99% of customers wouldn't know the difference if you moved it back to the US, where it's easier to monitor, and frankly, probably faster (and you could still have many of the bells and whistles you want).

    Also, you've repeatedly said you're gonna make what you want, and if people don't like it, then fuck them. But then you come here and complain about losing customers, delays, etc. - you can't have it both ways. It's probably time to decide.
     
  17. shortlefty

    shortlefty Senior member

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    I agree with your first and third point. I believe Mauro creates way too many shirts, Henleys, and button ups that it becomes hard to differentiate between the products. Will the $110 tencel shirt be that much better than my $40 bamboo sorano shirt? Probably..? But not by much. The color Mauro chooses also are either pretty ugly or repetitive that it makes no sense in purchasing them. No one needs 2 great same colored shirts in different fabrics.

    I haven't bought much from wvg but that is because the products are just an endless river of shirts and Henleys. I think reintroducing pants, shorts, jackets and mainly sweaters at lower prices even if some quality is lost, could be game changing (at least for me). Creating exciting and different clothes like leather jackets (which was halted),top coats (an essential modern fashion piece) duffel coats (more inline with Mauro's products) underwear (who doesn't want a bamboo sorano brief?), gloves (simple leather gloves at lower costs than other retailers) cargo pants (to appease the younger customers) and etc would capture new and retain customers. I know Mauro isn't really a designer that went to the prestigious fashion school in Paris, but he needs to focus more on style, color, and trends while keeping the quality and prices the same too. He chooses some really horrendous patterns or colors that would obviously sell poorly. Honestly, if I had to define 2016 wvg, it would be boring.

    However, I disagree with your second point. Being that Mauro has had set the pre-order system at least 6 months ago, most people should be expecting delays or at least be accustomed to it. We all know the quality the price ratio is insane and in my opinion, is worth the extra time needed to get the best product.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2017
    1 person likes this.
  18. notwithit

    notwithit Senior member

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    Wearing a bamboo-sorona u-neck as a base layer today. So comfy. I'd definitely buy more if new colors were offered. I'd love to see some tanks released in this fabric for summer. U-neck baseball tees could be cool, too (raglan 1/2 or 3/4-sleeve, curved hem).
     
  19. Nik Telford

    Nik Telford Senior member

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    If the production delays get cleared up I'll absolutely start pre-ordering again.
     
    1 person likes this.
  20. chickenfark

    chickenfark Senior member

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    1) A button down shirt and a tee shirt are two very different things.
    2) I do have the same colored shirts in different fabrics. Particularly for things like a heavy oxford for winter vs. a light linen shirt for summer
     

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