David J Chadwick ltd – founded 1967 – Strangeways, Manchester, England.
Chadwicks have a rich heritage as a prominent supplier of fabrics to the uk garment making industry since the late sixties and seventies. Predominantly at first in the rainwear trade for the early part with the north west and Manchester,”the rainy city” in particular being at the centre of a more larger and thriving textile industry.
Importing and stocking a specialized range of rainwear fabrics from Europe initially, it soon became clear there was growing demand and new opportunities with a wider and more comprehensive marketplace of clothing manufacturers and brands throughout the UK and mainland Europe as fashions changed – recognizing the needs of manufacturers, the ability to identify new trends, coupled with just in time delivery were key to the companies growth and success.
The eighties and nineties also signalled the start of a more profound and lasting change in the global manufacturing market as large scale textile manufacturers in South East Asia and the Far East targeted Europe with a wide variety of low cost specialist fabrics.
Whilst in the long term it would signal the demise of high volume European garment manufacturing, Chadwick’s seized the opportunity to expand its fabric business into a wider range of specialist markets including sportswear, high street fashion, corporate and workwear as well as a variety of non apparel end uses such as equestrian and protectivewear.
Customers included multi-national and household retail brands who nominated our fabrics to their manufacturers worldwide, as well as many smaller market leading niche and specialists garment manufacturers. But with suppliers now being further afield, more frequent journeys to the Far East were essential in order to build lasting relationships with key suppliers as well as to ensure that quality standards were met, something which is still fundamental to the companies success and values today.
Beyond the year 2000, Chadwick’s continued to recognize the need to diversify and invest, looking for new markets that represented a more secure future and adding other textile related companies to the group, most notably “The Design Co” a leading UK company designing, manufacturing and sourcing a range of childrens nursery bedding and furniture. Products were designed and developed in the UK working closely with key retailers but manufactured in Asia with specialist suppliers.
This new direction led to the creation of Chadwick’s first China office, set up to control quality and manage operations day to day on the ground. Crucially also helped cement the working practices and quality controls vital when sourcing multiple products offshore.
By 2005, despite still producing and stocking a wide variety of fabrics, it was clear UK and European garment manufacturing was in decline at pace with only smaller niche UK manufacturers offering a more bespoke service able to offer an alternative to mass produced garments.
It became unviable for certain garments to be made anywhere else other than Asia or Eastern Europe at lower cost. However, as technology progressed, Digital Sublimation printing in the sportswear market was growing, enabling sports brands to offer teams, clubs and schools unique garment designs and personalisation at reasonable cost compared to more traditional expensive embroideries, transfer prints and appliques.
Steadily the market for sublimation expanded and as such Chadwick’s range of specialist knit fabrics for printing grew, as did a wider demand for generic imported off-the-shelf sportswear.
By 2010 In conjunction with a select few key brand customers, Chadwick’s had already started to manufacture a variety of sportswear garments using a growing number of trusted China based factories, using years of fabric sourcing knowledge to ensure finished products were fit for purpose and premium quality.
Steadily, a growing garment customer base meant the companies direction was changing from being primarily a sportswear fabric specialist to being a teamwear garment supplier at the same time.
Today, Chadwick Teamwear offer a premium range of more than 50+ garment styles, with in excess of half a million garments in stock available for immediate delivery from our Altrincham based warehouse.
Chadwick Textiles fabric division holds stock of 250,000m of specialist fabrics for sublimation offering teamkit sports brands and manufacturers in the UK and Europe a fast, efficient service with expert advice and customer support.
We continue to build our team of sportswear garment specialists both in the UK and China, designing and developing all our own products. We never source through 3rd parties or agents, only ever direct with trusted specialist manufacturers, enabling us to offer fit for purpose premium teamsport/training garments and fabrics suitable for pro level through to grass roots clubs, schools and universities.
‘BRAND QUALITY WITHOUT THE BRAND’!