I’ve been SO bad at blogging lately. It’s mostly because of how completely insanely busy life has been since announcing that I’ll be launching my own clothing line. SO MANY i’s to dot and t’s to cross. Wow. I hope you guys will bear with me. I promise, I’m here behind the scenes, working my butt off to make this happen.
The BIG NEWS is that I was studying like a madwoman so I could take the test required to register as a clothing manufacturer in California.
A few weeks ago I got a big packet of booklets in the mail to study, a registration number supplied, and I had to set to work studying for the test.
Even though I don’t have any employees, California requires anyone who is a “garment manufacturer” (also meaning you’re going to be hiring someone to make clothing for you, or you’re planning on making them to sell yourself) to register. Part of registration is this test.
The bummer thing is that there’s really no guide as to what will be included, so I had to muddle through hundreds of pages of information, most of which is in legal language, and try to retain the information. If you’re wondering what sorts of things were included, there’s PDF’s of the booklets here, here, here, here, and here. It was especially hard since I’ve never worked in a garment manufacturing job, but luckily I could envision things from my dad’s manufacturing in a different field and some of the safety stuff from having gone through training at the La Jolla Playhouse last year. It’s mostly about building regulations, safety regulations, how to set up an injury protection plan, fire regulations and safety, but also about wages, laws about contracts, legal proceedings against contractors and manufacturers, and all sorts of that type of stuff. It was HARD to study all these and try to decipher the legal lingo, and try to put myself in a place that’s on a much larger scale than I ever anticipate to be, but I really understand why I’m excepted to learn it if I put it into context of this recent article about the garment industry and shady contractors taking advantage of workers (in this case, focused on Forever 21).
Anyways, I muddled through and had a study buddy.
And got my hands quite messy with highlighters and pens.
My forearms actually still ache from all the writing, highlighting, and note taking I did.
The test itself, I think I did fairly well on. I won’t officially find out for a while (online says from 7 days to 45 days), but it was a little over 50 questions which were multiple choice and true and false. There were a few math questions which were actually outdated, since our minimum wage in California just changed to $9.00 an hour on July 1st, so I’m really, REALLY hoping they don’t mark me down for those questions, since the amount wasn’t applicable to the current minimum wage standards. I wrote the DSLE and let them know. If they catch it, I think I should pass. If not, I can retake it for another $25. But I’m hopefully all my studying paid off and I’ll pass with flying colors :)
I have my label design, the fabric design waiting to be printed, and I had truly hoped I’d have samples to share by Costume College, but since I’m waiting on the test scores and I have to re-send some information to the IRS and DSLE, I don’t think that will be happening quite as soon as I had hoped. All in all, this process has been PAINSTAKINGLY SLOW and quite complicated, before I can even show you the fun designs I’ve come up with! This process has been one of the most challenging things I’ve done in my entire life. It’s not easy, and I can’t wait until I can do something more creative! I’m so tired of paperwork and studying and learning laws, but they’re all necessary things to do my dream, so I keep on plodding along and will never give up :)
Speaking of Costume College, it’s sneaking up on us fast. Since I’ve had pretty much no time to devote to personal sewing projects, I don’t anticipate to have much of anything to show for myself.
I’ve been puttering on my first all hand sewn Regency dress. It was started as something I could easily pick up and put down, as a relaxing break from trying to do all the above mentioned. It’s actually coming together pretty swiftly!
And I just cut out my 1910’s jacket, so I’m hoping to get some more sew-a-long posts up really soon! I know a bunch of us wanted to wear them to Costume College on the Sunday. I just haven’t had the time to devote to that project that I thought I’d have!
I still have photos from Missouri I haven’t managed to get off of my camera yet, too. Man! Just not enough time in the day!
I hope soon I’ll have more exciting visuals to share of my secret projects for my clothing line! I really hope to have the Kickstarter up by August, but I’m waiting on all the legal stuff to be done before I can anything going, and I’m somewhat at the mercy of the system on that front.
Hope you’re having a fabulous Summer!