Producing Textile and Fabric Products

How much and what type of upfront tooling or setup charges can be expected when making a textile product such as a duffle-bag or backpack? Is the major cost of a textile product merely raw material and labor?

What is the typical process to getting such a product mass produced? Are there any US prototype factories that can run small qtys?

Any recommendations would be highly appreciated.


  1. Depends
  2. Depends

Further explained… if you’re making a simple 3 or 5 fabric panel duffel bag versus a highly innovative technical mountain backpack, there can be different initial charges. One for example, do you require custom hardware, or is off the shelf fine?
Hard to say what costs more, as there are millions of different fabrics out there and thousands and thousands of factories who pay different labor wages, all located in many different countries. If you’re using Dimension Polyant VX-71 fabric, with Riri zippers and Cobra buckles but are only making a fanny pack, then the materials cost more. If you’re making a massive cross-continent travel pack loaded with details and features, but made out of 400D polyester, then the labor cost will be more.

Long story short, it depends.

The typical process to getting a product produced properly would require hiring an expert in this field, or going down the long path of learning these processes via first hand experience (I’m 6 years into focused full-time design of softgoods, have been on-site to factories in 4 countries, on 3 continents, and I still have a lot to learn).