Save The Garment Center

From Benjamin Dein to “Ari Dein”

 “If there wasn’t a New York garment center, Ari Dein wouldn’t be here.”  –Arielle Shapiro

Founded in 2009, Arielle Shapiro has been building her brand, Ari Dein, with luxury designs produced in Manhattan.  Her architectural details and inspiration drawn from boutique hotel living have been contributing to her unique line of versatile sleepwear.  She dedicates Ari Dein to an old New York and a family history of quality in the New York Garment District.

“I run every aspect of my company and I depend on the garment district to be able to manufacture my collection.  My turn around time is short and I can baby-sit everything,” stated Arielle.  She added that if she had outsourced and something had gone wrong in production, she would have lost a significant amount of orders.  “The quality control is also really crucial to the price point that I’m aiming at.”

As Arielle started out sketching designs and putting her pattern making skills to good use in order to make her first samples, she wasn’t aware of the infrastructure of the garment center and became overwhelmed.  “When you have no experience working in the neighborhood, it’s like an island with a secret password and you have no idea how to start,” said Arielle.  Arielle explained that it wasn’t until a friend had introduced her to a factory when she discovered what kinds of resources were at her fingertips.  “I would literally ride the elevator on every floor of every building in the garment district, hunting for new contractors and building my network of local production resources.”

4. Basic steps to successfully source in the garment center:

1. Do research on the internet ( and are great places to start)

2. Get referrals

3. Building relationships of your own takes time, so make sure when you first hire a contractor they can show an example of similar goods.

4. Be clear about your quality expectations and make sure the terms of payment are clear.

Arielle’s great grandparents were hugely successful furriers manufacturing the NY Garment Center.   Their history and reputation for excellence inspired and motivated her ambitions.  “I thought, “if Benjamin Dein could be conquer New York high fashion as an immigrant without funding or even much English in his vocabulary, he paved the way for me to have a head start.”

Arielle’s goals for Ari Dein is to continue growing the business and build out the collections to have greater breadth.  Ultimately, taking her niche, lingerie inspired designs “to the street” and dressing women outside of the bedroom.

written by Tiffany Ouyang

Tiffany Ouyang is the editor of Quality Control and writes on the topic of internships in the fashion industry. Follow her on Twitter at @underqc

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