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How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria - Fashion - Nairaland

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How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by Grandeur1(m): 10:14am On Dec 11, 2017
My name is Toriola Isa Oladimeji– CEO of GRANDEUR Tailors. I am a professional tailor with several years of experience. I need to tell you this, just to assure you that you’re not reading an ordinary random blog post put together by a novice in Tailoring field. I therefore guarantee you of ample information on how to start tailoring business in Nigeria, its requirements and obstacles. A lot of expensive information is therefore promised to be unveiled with utmost selflessness.

Now here we go.

Two sets of people often venture into tailoring. The first set are those who will go through apprenticeship experience to learn and later set up their own tailoring shop. The second set are those who has money to employ tailors and set up in a big way. The factor which determines which of the two is best to go for is the starting capital and the time planned to be devoted. However, I’ll break down how you can go about the two . As you read through the sub topics beneath, you’ll grasp all you need to know on any format of setting up.

Learning Tailoring
Whatever might have prompted you into tailoring, be it passion or lack of job, you can only skip through the learning process when you have enough money to employ skilled tailors. At this point, I must confess to you that the learning process is not always a child’s play as people outside tailoring perceive it.

You can learn tailoring as an apprentice under an experienced tailor or you enroll into a fashion school. Both has their advantages and disadvantages.

Learning as an apprentice might expose you to insults especially from some of your learning colleagues. If your boss happens to be a strict type, his/her rules may not be friendly to you; but you’ll really gain a lot if you concentrate. Yes, Concentration matters because many of these bosses hardly explain work; they only do explanations once in a while. What they expect is that you should look and grab. Aside learning how to make clothes, what you’ll learn from your boss is how to deal with different costumers and manage works generally.

As for fashion schools, they teach well all the time but I think the duration is always too small to grab all what it takes to be a boss. With extra self drilling and practices, fashion schools can be really cool. Though, some of them might just be after the money. Before choosing which one to go for, look at their packages and how well their products are doing.

The point is, learn from a good tailor or fashion school of good reputation and stay devoted during the course.

Choosing a niche
Tailoring is wide with different branches. It is therefore impossible for an entity to handle all the various aspects of tailoring work. From the onset while you are thinking of starting a tailoring Job, you must be thinking alongside with it, ”which aspect of tailoring to go into?”.

You may decide to go into native and casual men’s wear, suits and corporate men’s wear, ladies dresses, children’s wear, uniforms and other special dresses. And you may decide to combine two or more aspects, depending on what you wish to offer. But I do advice that the fewer the niche, the better.

Like some funny Nigerian tailors would do; they sew men’s native, English wears women’s dress and uniforms, all combined. Then they’ll have loads of work to do and starts to disappoint customers.


The good thing about staying on a particular aspect is that, it makes the tailor becomes faster on his job and making it easy to plan work. Imagine how good you’ll develop yourself by doing same type of work every day. It may sound unreasonable at start, but when you’re good and known at your specialty, people will come even from far distances to patronize you.

Setting up a tailor shop
After learning well and certified as professional tailor, the next thing is to set up your own shop. The kind of shop you’ll set up depends on what you have as starting capital. Never mind if you don’t have it much. Just fulfill the main purpose of having a shop which is to have a place your customers can be reaching you. A shop can be as small as a single space that contains your sewing machine, working table, hanger, a chair and little walking space. And you may also have it two roomed, one serving as a reception to attend to clients and the other serving as working place.

No matter how less furnished and lavished your shop is, always keep it clean and well arranged.

If you are setting up a big investment whereby you would employ tailors, it is better you have some tailoring ideas yourself too. The fact that you wouldn’t be the one working doesn’t mean you shouldn’t learn, though it may not be intensive like the other. By having good idea of tailoring skills, you would be able to know the amount of materials required to finish each job and the time it takes to finish. If you don’t know these things, your chance of going bankrupt soon is high.

When you employ tailors, you can either have a fixed amount to pay them monthly, weekly or you pay them per Job done. I believe paying per job done is the best because it makes no one feel cheated. Make sure you pay them well and let them see working for you as an opportunity. Since you can’t carry out jobs yourself, they are the life line of your business. Don’t be greedy, once your profit cool forget about whether you’re paying them too much or not. You win, they win, everybody wins, and then business goes forward.

Dealing with Clients/Customers
A poor customer relation can eat deep into your business and ruin it, but many Nigerian tailors don’t take cognizance of this.

People hate disappointment and most tailors keep disappointing. It’s an opportunity for you to make prompt delivery as a selling point for your own business. When you collect clothes, make sure you deliver or make it ready at the promised time. It is understandable that plans change unexpectedly; when such happens, it is obligatory that you inform your client before the fixed time. By delivering clothes at due time, you gain more love and trust from your clients. The only way you can achieve this is to be well organized. A situation whereby a client brings his cloth and says he needs it at a particular date, if it is not possible to deliver at that day, tell him from onset. If it would require that he’ll take it to another place, let him do so. You can’t keep client at the expense of your integrity.

Another aspect where tailors do have issues with clients is the aspect of payment. The golden rule to put into practise is “No advance, no action; No balance no delivery”. By following that, you’ll have fewer issues with clients. Try as much as possible not to give clothes on credit. When you give clothe on credit, you at times indirectly send them away from you. Because, by the time he wants to sew another one, he would feel reluctant to come to you because he’ll have to pay for previous clothe.

Do good and neat job with fascinating packaging and always remember you have a business reputation to protect. Doing good job can makes you charge well, thus making you get fulfilled and satisfied with your job.

Marketing Strategies
Many Nigerian tailors depend on just staying in shop to get clients. This is a big mistake especially at this age. Try and give your business a good online involvement. Make use of Facebook, Instagram, and better still, have a simple website. This things really works in letting more people know about what you do.

Another way of reaching people is to meet them in offices and advertise to them. But personally, I don’t like it.

People get to know you also from referrals from the clients you’ve made happy by doing quality job with prompt delivery.

It should be quickly mentioned that, it is very important and really helpful to mingle with other tailors and fashion designers in order to share ideas and rub minds. Join Fashion designers association of Nigeria FADAN and make sure you attend meetings.

Best of luck as you proceed to start.

12 Likes

Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by Fame333(f): 7:31pm On Dec 28, 2017
Nice one. Thanks
Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by gistcity(m): 8:24pm On Apr 28, 2018
Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by ticon4life(m): 3:48pm On Jul 14, 2018
cool
Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by anytaij: 8:43am On Jul 15, 2018
Thanks so much, are you based in Lagos? If yes what's your location ma?
Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by larryjay123(m): 8:56am On Jul 15, 2018
Wonderful info!, thanks and God enrich you.
I like to ask and to know the importance of registration of the Company name with CAC especially when I must have joined TAILORING ASSOCIATION and do attend meeting timely.
Re: How To Start Tailoring In Nigeria by NaijaPress: 1:59pm On Sep 11
Tailoring business plan in Nigeria goes with passion... you can only skip through the learning process when you have enough money to employ skilled tailors.

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