In the spirit of Fashion Revolution week, I would like to take the time to tell you a bit more about how our designs are made. But before I explain how we are doing things now, I would like to share the evolution of our production process.
In the very beginning I, Ophelia, was making every piece myself. For the first three years I cut all the pieces, sewed all the fabrics and laces and attached the elastics with my own two hands. Of course, this was very time consuming, so I decided to start working with a production company in Belgium. Since 2017, they made all the pieces with my assistance. It is a small atelier In Roeselare with 3 seamstresses, specialized in lingerie. But after a while, I started to outgrow this as well.
Determined to continue working with the atelier and also keeping the production in Belgium, I decided to set up my own atelier. I bought the necessary machines to work efficiently and hired a parttime seamstress to have all year production. This is a very unusual way of working, since brands usually have all their designs made in the beginning of the season and afterwards focus on selling them.
At Ophelia lingerie, we do things differently. In the beginning of the season we make larger amounts of the designs in our external atelier in Roeselare. We can work faster and more efficient there, so it is perfect for producing many pieces of the same design. In our own atelier we focus on small restocks of the designs, after they have sold out.
Why is it important to work this way?
By restocking small amounts every week, we only make the pieces that are necessary. This way we avoid any overstock, which means we don’t do seasonal sales or stock sales. By selling every piece at the same price, we can offer our clients a fair price for a local and handmade product.
What about our fabrics and elastics?
All our materials are sourced in Europe. Our fabric supplier is based in Italy, we buy laces in Germany and elastics in France. The most important factor of buying materials, is that we can buy small amounts. This adds to our philosophy of not creating overstock. Every fabric gets used until it is finished. This means we can restock a design as long as the fabric or lace is available. All our suppliers create their own products in house and are OEKO-TEX certified. We have also started working with new sustainable materials like organic cotton and bamboo fabric and are excited to continue this journey.