apparel giant Kellwood, maintaining its globally
competitive position is no easy feat. Significant
challenges come from rising labor costs, constantly
monitoring supply chain efficiency and staying a step
ahead of its megabrand rivals Liz Claiborne, Polo
Ralph Lauren and Jones Apparel.
revamp productivity within its highly labor intensive
design department, Design Process Manager Mary
Pintarelli enrolled the company's creative team of 39
employees in 24 hours of Adobe illustrator training at
Fashion Business Inc. Her goal was to improve
company efficiency by having all designers certified in
the same version of the program. Many of the designers
were creating apparel sketches by hand, but now all
design concepts will be submitted in Illustrator.
Multimedia software instructor Chris Schiotis customized
the curriculum especially for Kellwood to include
specific apparel design exercises from their workplace.
"There's a critical need for this type of training in
the apparel industry," says Schiotis. "At certain
training facilities there has been a high rate of
attrition because instructors teach this software from a
graphic-design perspective, rather than using material
that is specific to the fashion industry.
aligning Kellwood's creative team with industry best
practices and globally competitive design skills,
Pintarelli hopes to speed new ideas to market and
capture fast moving industry trends that will keep
Kellwood's brands on top.
has an office in City of Industry, California and
generates nearly 60% of its sales from women's wear,
including its Koret and Sag Harbor lines. Kellwood
brands include Baby Phat, My Michelle, Phat Farm and
Sierra Designs. The apparel, footwear and accessories
manufacturer sells its products through department
stores, mass retailers, specialty boutiques and
catalogs. Kellwood has gained a foothold in new niches
and grown through strategic acquisitions including
Vince, Group B Clothing, Romance du Jour, Phat Fashions,
Hollywould and licenses with David Meister, XOXO, Eddie
Bauer and Gerber Childrenswear,.
501(c )(3) provides the fashion industry with the
resources and training to turn businesses into a
FBI Resource Centers, along with
its website and business partners, offer business
education, technical training, sourcing, networking,
marketing and consulting services. These services and
tools promote the success of FBI members and ensure the
future vibrancy of America's fashion industry. FBI has
nurtured key West Coast brands from startup phase to
global distribution including American Apparel, C&C
California, Frankie B. and many others.
Learn more about the
Fashion Business Inc.