How to Start your Designer Outlet in Pakistan?


TailoringIn major metros such as Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi, corporate executives wear suits all the time as it is a major job requirement. Hence they cannot do without suits. However when it comes to women, the competition is very high in ready made dresses as well as in tailor made. A new entrant in this business has to make extensive amount of investment to survive in the beginning coupled with a strong marketing strategy to counter the competition. On the other hand in men’s formal wear, the competition is negligible in tailor made dressing. There are very few good quality brands in Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi in men’s formal hand made dresses. There is a potential in this market and for that you don’t necessarily have to be a designer or a tailor. These skilled people can be hired easily during the market research.

Starting the Business

The first and the most important step in starting a tailoring business is to find a suitable location in the posh areas of cities like Islamabad, Lahore and Karachi. It is advisable to get the shop or outlet on rent rather than purchasing the shop which is going to be very expensive in commercial areas. Area of the outlet depends on the scale of the business. Normally you should have sections in your shop. A fabric section with around 30 to 40 different fabric styles, a display center to show the type and quality of your work and you can increase the area according to your requirement. Then you should have another area for the workers which should be near the outlet so that coordination becomes easy.

Then a major investment is required on the purchase of machineries. Three main types of machines are required in men’s tailor made formal; Industrial sewing machine, industrial over lock machine, and steam boiler. One can increase the quantity of machines depending upon the work load. The industrial sewing machine should be of JUKI (brand) which costs around Rs. 65000, but used machines in good condition can also be used which would cost around Rs. 35000. Industrial over lock machine costs around Rs. 130,000 and a used one is of Rs. 50,000. Steam boiler costs around Rs. 40,000 to Rs. 45,000.

The material required for the work includes bukram, fusing, threads (nylon/cotton), buttons and lining. This whole material of a good quality would cost around Rs. 30,000 to Rs. 50,000. Then a stock of good quality fabric would be required of around 30 to 40 thans, which is going to cost around Rs. 4 to 5 lacs. Fabric and other material is usually purchased from Peshawarbecause it is very cheap in that area. Even big designers purchase the fabric from the pathans who bring the fabric from Iran and Afghanistan. You can make special deals with the whole seller of the fabric that the fabric he is selling to you should not be available in any other place of the market.


Workers are the most important and the most crucial part of this business. High skilled workers are difficult to find and even if you do find them, it is difficult to have a long term relationship. In this business, especially in the start, it is very normal that workers keep on shifting from your business to other businesses unless you understand the nature of the workers. Motivation is very important in this business for workers. It is wise to give pays to workers on weekly basis depending upon the number of suits and dresses they make rather than paying them on a monthly basis. Monthly payment method could slow down the work and the chances of losing your workers frequently are very high. Moreover, workers should be provided with food and other refreshment facilities to increase the motivation level.

The main workers required for the doing all the work are 4 and all of them should be highly skilled and should have an experience of around 5 years. These four include pattern maker, sewing person, hand Heming techniques person, and a highly skilled person for the measurement. The number of workers can be increased depending upon the work load. The pays of the workers vary from business to business. The payment should be made according to the number of suits they are making every week.


Once you have established the displays, purchased the material, machineries and hired the workers, you may well get down to the marketing aspect. For starters, you need to have a certain amount of marketing budget to get the customers. Since your business is limited to a specific city and area hence the marketing of the business becomes easier. You can market your brand through bill boards and advertisements on local cable channels. Then you must distribute your brochures in offices as they are going to be your prime customers. Every single office should be targeted through brochures and bill boards. Then initially special discounts should be offered on fabric and other incentives should be given to the customers e.g. free ties.  Ties can also be showcased in your display center. Moreover you should have an option for your customers to have a hand made tie of their type of fabric in the shop. Then another section of Lawrencepur fabric can be made available in your display center as it is the most renowned fabric brand inPakistan. Special deals with Lawrencepur can also be made. The investor should have a marketing budget of at least 3 lacs for the recognition of the brand.

Initial investment

To start with a very good material and skilled workers and a display at a very good location in posh areas of Lahore, Islamabad and Karachi, you need to have an approximate investment of Rs. 2 million. If the display center is not in a very posh location, then the initial investment is around Rs. 1.5 million. If you have marketed your business properly, you can reach the breakeven point in one and a half year. Once you have built your image in the market, you can earn an annual income of around 6 million rupees and even more. But in the initial phase, you can earn around 3 to 4 million rupees a year. Winters are the suiting season for men and the sales are on the high end. But all around the year, the sales could be maintained as apart from suits, you are also going to offer pants, shirts, ties and coats. Sales could be increased if you can target offices, especially the armed forces, where you can make deals of stitching uniforms. If you can get contract from Army, Navy, Air force, Police, Guards uniforms and factories where workers wear specific uniforms, then you can make a lot of profit as it is an on going process. As a result, your sales can increase tremendously. With an annual sale figure of around 6 million rupees, you can get the profit of around 4 million rupees or a monthly income of around Rs. 3 lacs.


The major problem with this business is the workers. You have to have very good and highly skilled workers as they are going to make the final product of your business and make a brand name in the market. You have to understand the nature of the workers and the required motivation level to keep your business running smoothly.


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