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The Glove Maker's Blog, Glove Sourcing Strategies for Retailers and Brands

Rhonda Hurwitz

Rhonda is a digital marketing expert helping companies grow.

Recent Posts

Glove Manufacturer Tips: 4 Ways to Deal With High Leather Costs

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Nov 24, 2014 2:08:00 AM

leather_multi_is_photo_285On my last trip to China, I had dinner with a leather supplier who represents many tanneries.

Our discussion turned to leather prices, which continue to rise.

While ultra premium brands can absorb higher material prices, that’s not the case for most brands we work with.

Here are some thoughts about how to maintain glove quality and margins, as we plan for another year of continued high leather prices in 2015.

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Glove Company Merchandising TIps: 4 Ways To Win at OmniChannel Retail

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Nov 17, 2014 10:17:00 AM

omnichannel_1-304694-editedLately I’ve been thinking about how to help our retail and brand partners succeed in an omnichannel world.

What's omnichannel? It's how the consumer shops -- and expects to shop -- in today's always connected world.

For example ...

  • Yesterday, I saw a nice scarf in a store window. I was in a rush, so I bought it -- online -- from my phone, on a train I ran to catch --

    -- but not before adding a $12 pair of socks to my order, to qualify for free shipping. 

    (And if I don’t like it, I’ll return it to the store!)

  • On November 11, also known as "singles day" in China – Alibaba sold $2 billion in the first HOUR. That's billion with a "B"!

  • Checking sales of our own direct-to-consumer Olympia Glove brand last month, I saw that our online sales have tripled in less than a year. 

Today’s consumer shops the way they want, when they want, where they want. 

This means visiting the mall ... or avoiding the hassle of parking and expense of gas, and shopping on a tablet while watching The Voice, or on a mobile device from a train.

It's an omnichannel world ...with lots of new challenges for retailers and brands. Are you ready for this? Here's how your suppliers can HELP.

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Topics: Private Label Supply Chain, omnichannel retail, ecommerce

Help a Glove Supplier Out: Take Our Apparel Buyers Survey

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Nov 8, 2014 6:53:00 PM



Expressions-1Expressions-1Each week, we open the kimono and share what's happening "behind the scenes" here at Olympia Gloves, to help educate glove buyers.

Today, we need your help.  Would you share your expertise with us?

We'd like to hear from apparel and accessories buyers -- branded or unbranded, if you are responsible for sourcing or buying decisions for a retail organization or a manufacturing company -- about your thought processes.

Our goal is to learn how suppliers succeed (or miss the mark), from your vantage point.

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Glove Maker Tips: 5 Ways to Make Samples Faster, Better, Cheaper!

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Oct 24, 2014 5:52:00 AM

woman_designer__hands_w_red_is_photo

 

People ask us two basic questions all the time ..

What will glove samples cost? And, how long will it take?

Last time, we outlined process of creating a glove, from initial concept to first sample:

How Glove Companies Bring Ideas to Life: From Design to Sample

Today, we explain what samples cost, and offer 5 suggestions to manage the sample process better, to save expense and time.

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Topics: Private Label: Glove Design Process, Private Label Sample Costs and Timing

How Glove Companies Bring Ideas to Life: From Design to Sample

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Oct 23, 2014 12:21:00 PM

woman_gloves_designer_hands_w_red_is_photoHere's a subject we're always asked about:  How does a new glove get made?

Creating a one-of-a-kind glove prototype, and producing a first sample, isn't like getting a sample in your local ice cream scoop shop. No offense to Ben and Jerry's, but there's a lot more involved.

Let's look at the process, from concept to first sample.

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Topics: Private Label: Glove Design Process, Private Label Sample Costs and Timing

Warning, Innovation Ahead! A Glove Maker's Conversation with PrimaLoft®

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Oct 15, 2014 9:22:00 PM

mike_joyce_PrimaloftThere's lots of innovation happening at PrimaLoft®, one of the outdoor industry's leading suppliers. 

Their team is working hard to make consumers a lot more comfortable, across a wide range of activities.

We recently had the opportunity to ask what's new for 2014-5, and beyond.

Get ready to learn what's ahead -- we think you'll be inspired by their consumer-centric innovations.

(Image credit: Albany Business Review)

 

 

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Topics: Private Label Glove Materials, Private Label Glove Innovation

3 Merchandising Lessons for Private Label Buyers, From Trader Joe's

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Oct 11, 2014 6:54:00 PM

trader_joesThis week, a story from the food retailing world got our attention.

While reading about why Trader Joe's thrives compared to competitors, a statistic jumped of the page for us.

Eighty percent (80% !!!) of Trader Joe's products are private label!!!

Their store brand acts like a magnet, pulling people into their stores. It must be a pretty special brand.

Are there lessons for your apparel, accessories, or glove business?  Hmmm ...

Keep reading. Actually, there's an important lesson for all of us, regardless of apparel category.

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Topics: Private Label Product Merchandising, Private Label: Glove Design Process

5 Elements of Great Glove Design: Lessons from 5-Star Reviews

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Oct 8, 2014 3:23:00 AM

fashion-1-854932-editedThe introduction of the new Apple iphone 6 got us thinking about great design.

Great design ...

  • creates demand days or weeks in advance

  • commands a premium price

  • creates waiting lists once the item sells out, even when substitutes are available.

Here's a quote that sums it up for us:

"Consumer loyalty always follows great design".

Well, gloves aren't phones or computers, and they aren't software ...

But customers aren't shy about telling you what they like ... and don't like.

So, we turned to 5-star glove reviews, to hear what design elements lead to the happiest customers.

The qualities we uncovered will result in the fierce customer loyalty we all strive to achieve.

Here's how consumers define great glove design:

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Topics: Private Label: Glove Design Process

Glove Design: The Surprising Story of A New Snow Sport Glove

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Sep 23, 2014 6:15:00 AM

dreamstine_helmet_ski_glove

What makes a great new glove design?

Recently we worked on a new ski glove project, and the development process took a surprising turn.

We thought we'd share the story ...

All great designs ... and brands ... start with knowing your customer.

And in this case, the merchant REALLY knew his.

Glove expertise, technical factors or leather knowledge are important ...

But for this design, "intangibles" made all the difference. 

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Topics: Private Label: Glove Design Process, Private Label Glove Innovation

Glove Manufacturer's Advice: 3 Ways to Reduce Minimum Order Quantity

Posted by Rhonda Hurwitz

Sep 12, 2014 7:35:00 PM

no_moqA glove buyer's job is tough.

You watch retail trends, and develop new items to satisfy customer demand. But, forecasting a new item is hard.

If you could, you’d start small. Perhaps even fly in a small quantity to test, to gain confidence for a bigger follow-up order. 

Your gut tells you there are larger quantities to come, but until you see what sells, how can you be sure? There’s no crystal ball -- so to manage risk, you try to keep quantities small.

Problem is, the manufacturing world isn't geared for "small". That’s why you run into the MOQ issue.

Here's how to work around it.

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We write about:

  • glove category trends and innovation
  • product development and materials
  • sourcing and supply chain issues
  • other gloves manufacturing topics

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