Branded clothing is an affordable, accessible and powerful marketing tool and a growing global trend. It brings your brand exposure, every day of the week, and creates a professional image that boosts customers’ trust and workplace morale by keeping your employees feeling confident!
The clothing we wear affects our performance
Research shows that the clothes we wear affect the way we perform. Fashion is an important part of how we define ourselves and our perceive others in the workplace. It can be a powerful tool to influence confidence, or it can have the complete opposite effect. What we wear to work can alter our thinking, negotiation skills and affect work performance—especially if uniforms are badly styled with out-of-date designs. In short: if employees aren’t happy about their office clothing, it can change an entire company’s bottom line.
Why choose custom over mass production?
Today, many organisations prefer stylish custom clothing instead of off-the-rack uniforms. Why? The answer is: EXCLUSIVITY. Custom designs that are tailored to suit your company’s corporate identity and unique culture. Selecting finer details such as fabric, colour, width, length, button type and thread, collar design, cuff and pocket shapes, can be used as techniques to highlight the style of your business.
In addition, quality is always superior. With mass-produced clothing, high quality is often not a priority, but manufacturers of bespoke corporate uniforms value detail over quantity. Employees need clothes that represent your brand, compliment different physiques and quality material that outlasts off-the-rail clothing competitors.
Now that you have some persuasive reasons to choose custom professional clothing over mass-produced items, you need to decide whether you should partner with an international or local manufacturer. You’ve probably heard the stories about saving tons of money by producing your workwear with Chinese manufacturers – but is it really a worthwhile choice?
Domestic vs. overseas clothing manufacturers
When deciding to have products manufactured in South Africa or overseas, businesses need to weigh up the pros and cons of each option. Most clothing is produced in China, India, Taiwan or Malaysia, which is why it is so much cheaper. But using an overseas clothing manufacturer is not as straightforward as saving money — especially when you consider the language barriers and time zone differences.
You are also likely to experience cultural differences that could affect how you work together. Then, there are important tariffs, high shipping costs and long wait times, as well as travel expenses when visiting the manufacturer. Most importantly, it is difficult to inspect the quality of your garments until they have been paid for and received.
A local office uniform supplier brings many benefits
When you partner with a corporate apparel supplier and manufacturer in South Africa, you are more likely to benefit from a higher quality of manufacturing. With factories just a stone’s throw away, you can manage the quality of your clothing efficiently and inexpensively with regular visits. Communicating in a shared language makes things easier, allowing for emergency orders to be processed quickly without international shipping and customs delays.
You also won’t have to worry about sky-high import costs, your consignment been delayed at sea and you will be supporting ethical and sustainable production methods. While overseas manufacturers can produce quality clothing, this will depend on finding a reputable manufacturer—and there are many to choose from—making your decision a risky one.
Where to find local manufacturers
Now that you have a better idea of the pros and cons of finding manufacturers, locally or abroad—where do you begin your search? Naturally, Google is the best place to start, but you will need to dig deep. While most factories fail to keep their websites optimized for Google searches, keep in mind that some of the best recommendations come from referrals. Ask your industry connections if they have any leads or if they know someone who might. Trade shows are also another great way to meet manufacturers so you can discuss your specific needs.
What to look for in a local clothing manufacturer
By now, you should have quite a few potential ideas for manufacturing your company’s uniforms. The next step is to refine your list. For most companies, it’s not just about the price, and due diligence during the decision stage will ensure you make the right choice. Spend some time going through the manufacturer’s reviews and presence online, as this will allow you to understand the quality of their services and capabilities.
Whether you’re a small business looking to kit out your staff, or an established company looking to dress your employees for success—quality and longevity are everything in corporate clothing design. If you’re looking for the best return on your investment, then you should partner with a local manufacturer who values the same quality as your company.
It’s important to visit the factory to get a better sense of the company, the working environment and other ethical practices. Analyse the quality of their product, ask for references and discuss intellectual rights, sampling, lead and delivery times.
Behind every successful uniform, stands a reliable manufacturer – but choosing the right one is an expensive decision. You want to partner with a local uniform supplier that manufactures for diverse organisations and has a great reputation within the industry. You also need a clothing supplier that can express your brand’s strong identity and company culture, and meet deadlines and demands on time.
There are a handful of corporate clothing manufacturers in South Africa, but few can match the standard and versatility of KARMA Corporate Wear in Johannesburg.
We are one of South Africa’s top-rated custom corporate clothing suppliers
At KARMA, our services translate the quality craftsmanship of an atelier service to the modern world of high-end office couture. Deriving inspiration from the runways of Milan, Paris, New York and London, our skilled seamstresses and experienced designers have access to all the latest trends, manufacturing software and equipment.
We offer clients the flexibility to choose from a wide assortment of fabrics, colours, styles, stitching and prints when customizing one of our existing products from our line of corporate uniforms – or the opportunity to design something bespoke and completely unique!
What makes us the best in the custom clothing industry?
At KARMA, we consider our brand to be a big part of South Africa’s retail manufacturing industry and are committed to offering our clients an unrivalled, superior quality service. We have helped dozens of companies build their brand—and we can help you with yours.
Not only do we do all our manufacturing in-house at our factory plant in Johannesburg, but our in-house production team offers advice and recommendations tailored to suit corporate identities.
As a leading custom apparel consultancy and clothing manufacturer in Johannesburg —supporting small companies through to National and International organisations —we take great pride in the quality of our bespoke garments.
We are committed to providing exceptional office clothing which meets the high standards of our industry and customers, regardless of quantity. Fabrics are sourced both locally and abroad to match your requirements, and our custom clothing design quality is strictly monitored and assured throughout the production process.
Visual design software and a personalised fitting service
Operating sophisticated software, we present clients with a customised design visual, incorporating chosen and approved styles and colours. This visual can be sent on to relevant departments and branches introducing your companies unique and personalised corporate wear collection.
With a mission to provide clients with the highest quality workmanship, we offer a personalised fitting service (KARMA-in-motion) that travels to your office, allowing you to test and refine the functionality of your designer clothing.
Exceptional customer service and fast delivery times
Using our fully computerised ordering, invoicing and tracking system—KOPS (KARMA Ordering Processing System), we make the entire process as easy as possible for clients by guiding them through a worry-free process from idea generation to delivery.
Working fast and efficiently, our delivery times on bulk orders are within 6-8 weeks.
Let’s make great products together
Striving to provide the highest quality workmanship—crafted under fair trade manufacturing conditions for affordable pricing—we are passionate about what we do and are dedicated to helping you build your brand.
Not sure where to start? Reach out to us via our contact form and we’ll schedule a consultation just for you.