Private But Not Peculiar
Understanding the purpose and provisions of private label apparel
THE KEY TO anything is to first understand it and then decide how best to use it. Consider the human tear duct and its byproduct. It is widely understood tears are the body’s mechanism for cleansing the eyes of foreign objects as well as for lubricating the eyeballs. However, most people would readily agree that tears are best used to pull at heart strings and ultimately to get one’s way! Although customized promotional apparel is hardly anything to cry about, the same principle applies to the notion of private labeling in the industry. The term must first be understood and then decided where it could work best.
In an effort to provide a quick primer on the subject, Paul Kunitz, general manager at Scottsboro, Alabama-based Valtex, defined
private labeling as “the means of creating a product, usually a garment, with the customer’s identification in it, [rather than] the manufacturer’s brand name.” He further said the term frequently means “substituting a customer’s label when the garments are manufactured, usually to order.”
And it is the “to order” part, also known as custom manufacturing, that defines the best practices of private labeling. Businesses looking to stand out from the crowd by designing a unique garment will find this apparel niche most useful. “A very important part of Valtex’s private-label business is custom manufacturing a product to the specific requirements of the customer,” Kunitz explained. While Valtex primarily specializes in private labeling for infant and toddler wear through its Kiddy Kats line, Kunitz said the company can produce
“adult goods to special order,” as well.
Like Valtex, Vantage Apparel, Avenel, N.J., specializes in custom manufacturing of private-label apparel. “We can design custom products or collections,” noted Gina Barreca, director of marketing.