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Showing 8 posts in Manufacturing.

The FTC Cranks Up the Heat on Wool

Wool LabelingI am a very judgmental shopper – I inspect the seams and make judgments on the quality of the workmanship. I have left a lot of garments on the rack due to fabric that looks or feels “cheap.” I suspect that I share these shopping habits with everyone that knows how to sew, but doesn’t have time to make it through the pile of fabric that they just had to have.

I also read labels, before I make a purchase and again before that first trip to my washing machine or the dry cleaner. While I am a careful consumer, and someone who has relied on wool to make it through more than 30 Michigan winters, I must confess that the Federal Trade Commission cares a lot more about the details of wool labeling than I do.  Read More ›

Categories: Compliance, Fashion, Manufacturing

Labels: A Necessary Pain in the Neck

Garment TagIf you manufacture, import, sell, offer to sell, or distribute garments or textiles for household use, you need to know about labels.  If you don’t know precisely what you must label, or know the necessary content or location of your label, I highly recommend reading Threading Your Way Through the Labeling Requirements Under the Textile and Wool Acts, published by the Federal Trade Commission.  Threading Your Way is a much easier read than the Textile Products Identification Act, 15 U.S.C. § 70 et seq, and offers a lot of “how to” advice to include how to obtain and use a Registered Identification Number (“RIN”). Read More ›

Categories: Distribution, Manufacturing

Joe Carr, 3D Printing & Digital Manufacturing

digital manufacturingThe Runway's 411 Speaker Series is bringing in Joe Carr on Wednesday, Sept. 30 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. For those of you who have yet to see a 3D printer at work this will be a great opportunity to experience state of the art technology. For those of you that have some exposure to 3D printing Joe Carr is a wealth of information. He is a 3D printing veteran who helped start one of the world's first 3D printing retail stores.

The event will be held at The Runway and the cost to attend is $10. This is one speaker you will not want to miss. Be sure to register for the event here.

Hope to see you there! -Deanna

Categories: Fashion, Manufacturing, News & Events

Made In Michigan – Coming soon, to your closet?

Anyone who has spoken to me in the last two years about fashion law will attest to the fact that I am obsessed with the idea of developing a robust Michigan garment industry. For those of us who have not grown up in the New York garment district, it is difficult to comprehend all of the people and processes that are involved in a robust garment industry. Fortunately, I share my obsession with my daughter, who sent me a link to "Make it in America: Empowering Global Fashion" (2014). If you have an interest in what has happened to New York’s garment district, would like to hear from designers how important it is to have direct access to manufacturing and sourcing, or just wondered how your jeans were made, check it out here.

Made in America, made locally, made by hand – these have become value added descriptions of the clothes, shoes and accessories that we buy. I’d like to change the end of Make it in America, or be the first person to view Make it in America – Part II, to explore the success story that we Made in Michigan. 

Categories: Manufacturing

The Power of Choice and the Importance of Informed Choice

The theme of Fordham Law’s recent Fashion Law Symposium was The Power of Fashion. None of us need to attend a symposium to know that the consumer has power – the clothing that we choose to buy influences what is made for future seasons. We are increasingly aware of how our choices influence where our clothing is made. Years of preferring to buy as much as possible at the lowest price drove a lot of garment manufacturing, and other manufacturers of consumer goods, out of the US.

Thankfully, we are seeing a big push in the other direction – buy less and buy smart. The smart consumer is not only looking for quality, they are also considering the effect of their purchase on their local market and the US workforce. This trend has laid the foundation for companies like Shinola Detroit to make quality goods right here at home. This trend will be a big player in the success of a growing Michigan garment manufacturing industry and other US “makers.”

What I did not know, until I attended the Symposium at Fordham, was the power of our social media choices on modeling. Did you know that when you choose to follow a model on Facebook or Twitter you are helping them land their next job? Fordham Law brought together a panel that included Coco Rocha (yes, the supermodel), Chris Gay of Elite World Group, and Melissa Wilhelmina Cooper to discuss the power of social media in the modeling industry. They wholeheartedly agreed that social media has dramatically changed their industry. Read More ›

Categories: Manufacturing, News & Events, Social Media

The Small World That Lives in New York City

I had the very good fortune of spending a few days in New York. I am sure that my small town, Midwestern roots are showing when I share my fascination with The Big City. I love the energy and the endless options of things to see and do. This recent trip was, however, completely focused on the fashion industry. I was in New York to attend the 5th Annual Fashion Law Symposium at Fordham’s Fashion Law Institute, and while in town I attended a “Fashion at FIAF Talk” by Jack McCollough and Lazaro Hernandez of Proenza Schouler, had lunch with designer Daniel Vosovic, discussed re-branding with a young designer on a walk through Central Park, shopped at MOOD, met with the founders of The Trim Lab, and checked out the Halston exhibit at The Museum at FIT. I will be sharing some specifics regarding these recent New York happenings in future posts, but I would like to first share a general observation and how it will, I hope, translate into things to come in Michigan. Read More ›

Categories: Entity Planning, Fashion, Intellectual Property, Manufacturing

House Bill 4198, what is it good for? Nothing, absolutely nothing.

If you employ anyone or hope to employ someone, be aware of a very bad idea. House Bill 4198, introduced by State Rep. Peter Lucido would, if it became law, effectively ban non-compete agreements between employers and employees in the State of Michigan. Particularly for fashion designers, who lack statutory protection for the overall design of their garments and accessories, a covenant not to compete is a very important provision in the designers’ agreements with their employees.

According to Crain’s Detroit Business (March 23, 2015, p. 25), House Bill 4198 was a reaction to a publicized debate over the use of covenants not to compete by Jimmy John’s Franchise LLC to prohibit their sandwich makers from working for a competitive sandwich shop. I have to wonder whether anyone involved in such a debate, or involved in authoring House Bill 4198, has a working knowledge of current Michigan statute on the topic and the role of our courts in enforcing covenants not to compete. Read More ›

Categories: Contracts, Employment, Intellectual Property, Manufacturing

Foster Swift Obtains Unanimous Jury Verdict against Competitor Manufacturer and Sales Agent in Federal Trademark Law and Unfair Competition Case

Foster Swift is pleased to share news of its success in federal court, representing a manufacturer whose patterns, vendor pricing list and raw materials sourcing were misappropriated by a former production manager and former outside sales agent.  If you have suffered such a loss at the hands of a former employee or sales agent, or if you wish to discuss protecting your proprietary information, please contact us.  – Deanna Swisher                  

A federal court jury in Detroit unanimously found in favor of Foster Swift’s client, an internationally recognized manufacturer of custom sports equipment. The complaint in the case alleged that the client’s former production manager and former outside sales agent, while still engaged by the client, had established a directly competing manufacturing and sales business, in breach of their fiduciary duties and duties of loyalty. The complaint also alleged violations of federal trademark law (false designation of origin), unfair competition and civil conspiracy. After a ten day trial in September 2014, the jury awarded Foster Swift’s client substantial monetary damages against the individual defendants, and against entities that each of them had formed, upon hearing evidence that they had misappropriated and used the client's corporate name, manufacturing patterns, vendor pricing lists and raw materials to establish their competing enterprise. Read More ›

Categories: Contracts, Manufacturing, Trademarks