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Why Made in the USA? Because You Cant Make it Better Anywhere Else

The question has been posed many times before by this magazine: Were it not for the Berry Amendment, would manufacturers still produce a USA-made product? Better still, would they want to?

For industry veteran Bob Lazar, the answers are simple. Of course we would, he believes, because there are simply some things that cant be made anywhere else.

That is the philosophy behind Artcraft Blazers, the manufacturer of high quality in stock blazers and blouse coats who has never veered off the made-in-the-USA path since its inception in 1950. And while that sentiment was popular during Artcrafts nascent years, for many, manufacturing here nowadays is purely a matter of economics. Yes, offshore production has hurt us, because most blazers made overseas sell at prices below our price, says Lazar, Artcrafts owner.

But for those customers who still value a superior level of product customization, Artcraft is second to none. Lazar illustrates this point: Many customers prefer a welt pocket on the blazer rather than the traditional patch pocket. To accommodate this, when we cut the blazer, we take the left front, send it to the embroiderer, and once his work is complete, he returns it to us so that we can finish the garment. Im not sure you can get this level of customization anywhere else.

Artcrafts attention to detail extends throughout its customer service policies. To assure the proper fit, a major headache in the industry, Artcraft sends a series of try on blazers before an order comes in. This way, we are 98 percent certain that the garment is going to fit right the first time, notes Lazar. The normal rate of accuracy for the industry? A mere 50 percent. This irritates the customer, frustrates everyone and makes us look unprofessional, Lazar adds.

The company distributes its blazers through a network of nationwide dealers, who at times, Lazar admits, have been less than enthusiastic about adding these to its product offering. Our blazer, depending on the fabric, wholesales for $70 – $75 dollars, explains Lazar. From the dealers perspective, it is easier to sell less expensive items like t-shirts, and it has been a challenge to get them involved.

Of course, the type of product offered is the main reason why customers keep coming back to Artcraft. Customers may choose from a wide range of colors (purple was the most popular last year, second only to navy), in several fabrications., including 100% wool, 55/45% worsted wool, all polyester and Trevira. And if they need a special color, well do it. We can accommodate orders from a handful to 4,000 units, adds Lazar. That level of service can take only take place in the USA.

To learn more, call 800-345-4166 or visit www.artcraftblazers.com

Above story first appeared in MADE TO MEASURE Magazine, Fall & Winter 2006 issue. All rights reserved. Photos appear by special permission.
Halper Publishing Company
633 Skokie Blvd, #490
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(847) 780-2900
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