Approach & Process

Why We Need To Rethink Fabric Sampling

The current sampling process costs brands and manufacturers massive amounts of time, money, and opportunities. Now, there's a solution for it. Here’s a quick primer on how we are rethinking the way sampling is done.

May 17, 2021
Written by
Natali Andersen


The sampling process plays a vital role in product development for both Brands and Manufacturers. Requesting samples serve as a quality and capacity check from the buyer's end and a key tool to forecast the resources that will go into production from the mill's end. However, the current sampling process continues to cost brands and manufacturers massive amounts of time, money and opportunities. Moreover, it can be incredibly wasteful.

The True Cost of Physical Sampling

Fabric samples act as a bridge between buyers and producers and are vital to follow through before placing a bulk order.

On the brands’ side of things – requesting samples lets them visualise their designs, test the quality of the fabric and the supplier's capability to develop, produce and deliver the product. Therefore, it is essential to be meticulous in the sampling process, given the time and distance it takes for the samples to reach product development offices worldwide.

For manufacturers, on the other hand – samples are a means to an end. Samples are made to identify selling opportunities. Thus, seemingly optimising and eliminating potential bottlenecks. Samples can also provide accurate estimations on material consumptions, which allows mills to budget time and resources accordingly. A good quality sample can invite more business for the mills, but there is a hidden environmental cost with every physical sample created.

The Current State of Samples

Current design and development processes within mills remain wildly inefficient.

Between requests on initial samples to approvals and alterations, the back and forth can end up taking up weeks, depending on the buyer's requirements and the producer's capabilities.

But what if you could digitise your fabrics and provide your customers with 'digital raw materials' to bring their ideas to life in a digital format, in less than a day?

Introducing INDIKON

INDIKON is a cloud-based fabric digitisation platform that lets you turn physical denim fabrics into beautiful 3D-ready materials in a blink, with a set of proprietary algorithms. Today, the ability to launch new denim fabrics to market and fast-track product development with digital tools is limited by the lack of accurate, high-quality digital materials.

This means that countless fabric samples are produced for design and product adjustments that could be done digitally - contributing to an enormous amount of material waste and logistical pollution. By bringing fabric digitisation into the mill, we can fast-track the ability to sample fabrics immediately from mills around the world and get them straight into CLO3D/Browzwear.

This solution is but built explicitly for denim, with no hefty upfront investment in dedicated equipment for the mill. All you need is a digital camera with a flash, a bit of training, and then you are ready to go.

We are bringing this to the market in partnership with Bandicoot – A Sydney based startup company creating new software that makes it easier to capture and display 3D fabrics that are essential for the digital transformation of the global fashion industry.

Choosing INDIKON means that denim mills will be at the forefront of enabling better digital product development to reduce waste, time, and logistical pollution of physical samples.

Sounds like something you want to be a part of?

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