Over the past few years ODM has arranged sampling processes and production for a different pair of socks every year.   They are highly sought after collectibles.   After completing the design of our lucky monkey, it’s then time to kick-start the sampling process at our factory.   Here is a brief blog explaining the processes of sampling in factory as part of our product development process.

Sampling Process Step 1- Production

Our last sock factory visit and blog gave you lots of details on how we create lucky monkey socks.   The sampling process takes place on the same machines using tiny production runs just to check all aspects of the product.

Sampling Process - Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Sampling Process – Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Stages of our monkey sock production process:

  1. Materials. Our lucky monkey socks consists of 76% cotton, 22% polyester and 2% elastane. This combination let us keep with our colour scheme, maintain high standards of quality and importantly retain the elasticity for a long period of time.
  2. Digital grid map. The factory then process our lucky monkey logo into a digital grid map using a specialist computer software. Each individual square represents a sewing point whilst the shading represents the different colours of yarn needed for stitching.
  3. Computer process. This grid map is then entered into another computer functioning the operations of the sewing machine.
  4. Stitching. The needles finally act in accordance to the mapping and our lucky monkey is then embroiled into the sock.

Our video gives more of an insight into the production process behind our lucky monkey socks:

 

Sampling Process Step 2- SF Express

Once the socks are produced, our sock factory sends our sock samples through Chinas leading and most reliable courier, SF express.

Sampling Process - Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Sampling Process – Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Why we like to use SF Express in China?:
  • Cost effective. A package of this size and quantity will cost USD 2. If sourcing and shipping overseas this can cost upwards of USD 60.
  • Time efficient. 2-3 working days is what is expected to ship from the East to West of China.
  • Great coverage. SF express cover 86% of the country and are able to attend to all of our factories based around China.

Sampling Process Step 3- Measurements and Contour Check

Sampling Process - Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Sampling Process – Our Lucky Monkey Socks

What do we look for? 

  • Colour. Our lucky monkey sock consists of 4 colours. We check these with our pantone book in order to ensure that the sample matches our design. In some cases the colours we use aren’t directly from our pantone book. Our blue monkey sock is a colour directly from our factory. We decided to use it because not only did it look better, it is significantly more cost-efffective to do so.
  • Size. There are two methods of measurement we check for our socks. From the heel to cuff (top of sock) our socks are measured to be 230mm , from heel to toe (bottom of sock) they are 220mm. We decided to use these sizes because it would fit the western average of a size 7 foot (24 cm length). It is important not to measure the size before trying the socks on due to the socks stretching.

Sampling Process Step 4- Hands-on

Sampling Process - Our Lucky Monkey Socks

Sampling Process – Our Lucky Monkey Socks

What do we look for?

  • Embroidery. Does the embroidery match our design? We are very pleased of how our monkey looks on the sock although it is crucial to ensure that it is durable and the stitching doesn’t come out after use.
  • Stretch. We stretch and feel the socks in three areas; the cuff, centre and toe end. This is important to feel the thickness and see whether our monkey logo keeps it shape.
  • Fitting. The final step is trying the socks on- does it fit well? As these socks will be given out to a variety of people we make sure to get all of our office to try on our socks and get their feedback.

Our next monkey blog will be about the packaging and tag aspect to our lucky monkey socks. Be sure to keep an eye on our twitter and Facebook to be the first to find out when it is posted.

Check out other Promotional Socks blogs here.  Now that you know the sampling process for promotional products…

Have a browse through our promotional product blog for some more case studies that may help spark some ideas.
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