Well, since I hadn’t heard from my manufacturer (which is usually bad news) I called him up and braced myself. He surprised me with 2 unfortunate updates:
1) The bag production was delayed (again) to next week, so the bags would be shipped out on 2/12
2) To minimize costs we’d need to ship this ground delivery, which would take 7 whole days to arrive
So it looks like the earliest I’d get my bags is 2/19. Since I don’t want to screw around with the photographer’s schedule again, the manufacturer promised that if he missed the delivery date, he’d pay the difference in shipping costs to still ensure I would get the bags by 2/19. At least this gives him a strong financial incentive to meet that deadline, and he’ll take a hit if his production dates slip again.
I ended the call by asking him to think of ways to prevent these same delays next time, and I even offered to have his patternmaker do future patterns for me, and getting him more involved with the fabric selection process. I’ve talked to other designers and they tell me these types of delays is normal, but most of these designers do production overseas. My manufacturer is in the same country as me and he still can’t get my products delivered within a reasonable about of time. Can’t Obama help someone like ME?!
Now that I know what’s going on with my bags, I’m going to focus more attention on the purse organizers. I’m meeting with the plastics sales rep to see if he can find me other materials that I can use in my purse organizer shell. I am hoping we can get that production moving while I wait for my laptop bags to ship. Who knows, maybe these purse organizers will be finished first!
I’ve got a busy few weeks gearing up for launch: the website, PR, and search marketing have my head spinning a little. I hope I can pull it all together in the next 3-4 weeks! This has been a LONG, bumpy journey, but I am still glad I embarked on this career change. I can’t wait to start selling Plaid Doctrine products!