Relabelling, at first look, it might seem unethical — after all, you’re taking a product someone else made and rebranding it as your own — but it is a common practice in the wholesale T-shirt printing for resellers industry and it IS legal if you do it the right way.-
Who needs to know how to relabel when doing wholesale T-shirt printing for resellers?
Usually, owners of small and medium apparel businesses and clothing lines. Basically, it allows you to use a product of a wholesale company and sell it as your own, but there are limitations, of course. You can’t just grab any T-shirt, get rid of the branding and sell it as your own.
- Products must come from a wholesale brand
- Products must be basic in nature
- Products can’t have a distinctive design or feature (such as a particular cut or print)
- Products cannot be altered to look like the one of another’s brand (knockoff)
Things to know:
- To put it simply, someone that’s starting a clothing line is not required to create T-shirts from scratch. Relabelling gives a push to smaller brands and a “competitive edge” against bigger ones.
- Some wholesale companies like Gildan even produce garments with labels that are easy to tear away. This is an attractive option for designers who want to relabel, but don’t want to pay for a more “careful” and therefore more expensive way of getting rid of a label.
- Most of the time, the one doing the alterations gets rid of the brand label and keeps the one about care and handling.
- In order to relabel a garment you need to make sure of two things: First, that the supplier of the garment allows you to do so and second, that the label you replace it with abides to the laws of the territory you’re going to sell the product in.
- If you’re not sure of whether you can relabel a certain product or not, just ask the supplier.
Note: In case you’re wondering, Printsome does offer relabelling services. Depending on the garment, we can either carefully stitch out the label or just cut it. Of course, the first costs a bit more since it takes more time. Get in touch for more information.
When is relabelling illegal?
The first case would be when it is a product that’s been designed for retail. I don’t think Nike would be too happy if you took one of their trainers and claimed it as your own. As a general rule, if you see it in a shop, you cannot relabel it.
The second case would be when making a knockoff product. In the industry of wholesale printing for resellers, it is never okay to relabel a product to make it look like it was produced by another better-known brand.
The third scenario would be when the product to be relabelled has a distinct feature such as a pattern or a design. As we mentioned above, it’s only cool to switch the label when we’re dealing with basic items. No crazy pockets, prints or cuts allowed.
Requisites for labels of textile products in the UK
When doing wholesale T-shirt printing for resellers, you have to make sure you replace it with one that complies with the laws of the territory you’re going to sell the product in. There’s a lot of information out there regarding what information that needs to appear on the label of a textile product — some of it is accurate and some of it not so much. After some digging, this is what I’ve managed to find out:
- Let’s start by stating what the EU considers as a textile product: “any raw, semi-worked, worked, semi-factures, manufactured, semi-made-up or made-up product which is exclusively composed of textile fibres, regardless of the mixing or assembly process employed” — It also considers a textile product any article which’s weight is at least 80% textile.
- Since May 2012 it is mandatory to clearly label if the garment has any type of non-textile animal origin in its materials; such include, bones, fur and feathers among others.
- All garments must be labelled whenever they hit the market and this label must be “durable, easily legible, visible and accessible.”
- It is not necessary for labels to be sewed in or printed directly on the garment; swing tags are completely acceptable, as well as for the information to appear on the product’s package.
- Abbreviations are discouraged, but if they’re used then they must be explained in the same label
If supplies are manufactured outside of the EU, it is the importer’s responsibility to make sure the fibres in the garment are properly identified.
- When preparing garments to be sold internationally, make sure they comply with the final country’s laws, as they change from territory to territory.
- When selling your product in an EU member state, the information on the label must be in the territory’s official language — All countries members of the EU comply with the regulations listed here, but they may have their own on top of these
- Other information such as size and care instructions should be displayed separately from the fibre composition, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be on a different label.
It is important to note that it is compulsory to label nightwear garments, especially kid’s, that do not meet the flammable standards in the UK with a label that says in big, bold red letters “KEEP AWAY FROM FIRE”. You can find more information here.
The main purpose of the EU regulation is for consumers to know what the textile products they consume are made of. With that being said, there are other types of information that regularly appear on labels that are not mandatory, but still encouraged….
* I feel it is necessary to point out that these laws were put in place when the UK was still part of the EU, which means it is TBD if these will still be in place after the country finalises its exit negotiations from the union.
Encouraged, but not mandatory in the UK
The following information is encouraged but not required by law to appear on labels of textile products to be sold in the United Kingdom.
- County of origin
T-shirt Printing for Designers
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