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NATIONAL RECOVERY ADMINISTRATION 

. " AM 8 1936—— 



DIVISION OF REVIEW 



EVIDENCE STUDY 

NO. 9 

OF 



THE DRESS MANUFACTORING INDUSTRY 



Prepared by 
W. A. GILL 



JULY, 1935 



PRELIMINARY DRAFT 
(NOT FOR RELEASE: FOR USE IN DIVISION ONLY) 



HIE EVIDENCE STUDY SERIES 

The EVIDENCE STUDIES were originally planned as a means of gathering- 
evidence "bearing upon various legal issues which arose under the National 
Industrial Recovery Act. 

These studies have valiie quite aside from trie use for which they were 
originally intended. Accordingly, they are now made available for confidential 
use within the Division of Review, and for inclusion in Code Histories* 

The full list of the Evidence Studies is as follows; 



1. Automobile Manufacturing Ind. 

2. Boot and Shoe Mfg. Ind. 

3. Bottled Soft Drink Ind. 

4. Builders' Supplies Ind. 

5. Chemical Mfg. Ind. 

6. Cigar Mfg. Industry 

7. Construction Industry 

8. Cotton Garment Industry 

9. Dress Mfg. Ind. 

10. Electrical Contracting Ind. 

11. Electrical Mfg. Ind. 

12. Eab. Metal Prod. Mfg., etc. 

13. Fishery Industry 

14. Furniture Mfg. Ind. 

15. General Contractors Ind. 

16. Graphic Arts Ind. 

17. Gray Iron Foundry Ind. 

18. Hosiery Ind. 

19. Infant's & Children's Wear Ind. 

20. Iron and Steel Ind. 

21. Leather 

22. Lumber & Timber Prod. Ind. 



23. Mason Contractors Industry 

24. Men's Clothing Industry 

25. Motion Picture Industry 

26. Motor Bus Mfg. Industry (Dropped) 

27. Needlework Ind. of Puerto Rico 

28. Painting & paperhanging & Decorating 

29. Photo Engraving Industry 

30. Plunbing Contracting Industry 

51. Retail Food (See No. 42) 

52. Retail Lumber Industry 

53. Retail Solid Fuel (Dropped) 

34. Retail Trade Industry 

35. Rubber Mfg. Ind. 

36. Rubber Tire Mfg. Ind. 
57. Silk Textile Ind. 

38. Structural Clay Products Ind. 

33. Throwing Industry 

40. Trucking Industry 

41. Waste Materials Ind. 

42. Wholesale & Retail Food Ind. (See No, 

43. Wholesale Fresh Fruit & Veg. 31) 



In addition to the studies brought to completion, certain materials have 
been assembled for other industries. These MATERIALS are included in the series 
and are also made available for confidential use within the Division of Review 
and for inclusion in Code Histories, as follows; 



44. Wool Textile Industry 49. 

45. Automotive Parts & Equip. Ind, 50. 

46. Baking Industry 51. 

47. Canning Industry 52. 

48. Coat and Suit Ind. 53. 



Household Goods & Storage, etc. (Drop-' 
Motor Vehicle Retailing Trade Ind, ped) 
Retail Tire & Battery Trade Ind. 
Ship & Boat Bldg. & Repairing Ind. 
Wholesaling or Distributing Trade 



L. C. Marshall 
Director, Division of Review 



CONTENTS 

Page 

Foreword 1 

CHAPTER I - DESCRIPTION AND SCOPE 2 

History 2 

Scope of the Code 2 

Recent Changes 2 

General Operation of the Industry 2 

Size of the Industry 3 

Geographical Concentration 4 

Competitive Products 6 

CHAPTER II - LABOR STATISTICS 7 

Number of Employees 7 

To tal Annual Wage s 7 

Hourly Earnings 8 

Seasonality 10 

CHAPTER III - MATERIALS 11 

CHAPTER IV - PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION 13 

Advertising Media 13 

CHAPTER V - TRADE PRACTICES 20 

Practices Now Prevalent 22 

CHAPTER VI - GENERAL INFORMATION 23 

Industrial Associations 23 

Guilds 23 

Present Position of the Industry 23 

List of Experts • 24 



o o ~ 



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TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



TABLE 



I - 



II - 



III - 



IV 



V 



VI - 



TABLES 

Page 

Growth of the Dress Manufacturing Industry 

in the United States, 1914 - 1933 3 

Number of Establishments, By Principal 

States 4 

Location of Concerns and Sales, By Important 
Cities, 1931 4 

Number of Dress Firms Located in One State 

With Branch Offices in Other States, 1934 5 

Number of Dress Manufacturers and Jobbers 

in G-iven States Employing Contractors in 

Other States, 1934 5 

Registrations Under Dress Code January 1934, 
New Registrations During 1934, and Number of 
Dress Manufacturers and Jobbers Going Out of 
Business, 1934, By Important Producing States... 6 

Average Number of Employees By Important 

Dress Manufacturing States, 1929, 1931, and 

1933 7 

TABLE VIII - Total Annual Wages By Important Dress 

Producing States, 1929, 1931, and 1933..... 3 

Average Hourly Wage Rate, Average Hours Per 

Week, and Average Weekly Hours, 1933 and 1934... 8 

Employment, Payrolls, and Man-Hours, By 

Months, 1933 - 1934 9 

TABLE XI ~ Value of Materials Used, By Principal 

Kinds, 1933 11 

TABLE XII - Per Cent That Labor Cost and Cost of 

Materials Are of Total Value of Product, 

1929, 1931, and 1933 12 

TABLE XIII - Total Value and Volume of production, 

1929, 1931, and 1933 13 

TABLE XIV - Label Sales of Price Lines For United 

States and Important Producing States, 1934 14 



VII 



IX - 



X - 



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TABLES (Cont'd) 

Page 

TABLE XV - Estimated Dollar Volume of production 

Based on Label Sales for the United States 

and Important Producing States, 1934 14 

TABLE XVI - Value of Products "by Important Produc- 
ing States, 1929, 1931, and 1933 15 

TABLE XVII - Number of Wholesale and Retail Establish- 
ments Distributing Products of the Industry, 
1929 16 

TABLE XVIII - 1934 Sales of 97 Dress Manufacturers and 
Jobbers Located in New York City By Price 
Line and By Sales Within and Outside New 
York State 17 

TABLE XIX - Sales by State Destination of Dresses for 
Eight Manufacturers or Jobbers Located in 
New York State, 1934 18 

TABLE XX - Retailers Returns to New York Manufacturers 
Handled by Dress Code Authority November 1, 
1934, to April 25, 1935, by Important Pur- 
chasing States 19 

TABLE XXI - Dollar Sales and Returns of New York Dress 

Manufacturers by Price Groups, 1933 and 1934.... 21 



- o o ~ 



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-]j- 



THE DKESS MAffiJFAC TURING INDUSTRY 



Foreword 



Published government data coextensive with the 
Code definition for the Dress Manufacturing Industry are 
extremely meagre. Complete Census data pertaining to 
dress manufacturing are not separately reported for 
various of the topics listed in the outline. Wherever 
Census data are available — as in the case of value of 
production — these have "oeen used. 

For other topics, Census classifications as they 
stand are not comparable with the Code classifications 
and the Census data are not sufficiently broken down to 
allow of recombination to give totals comparable with 
the scope of the Code. In many such cases unpublished 
Census material, especially prepared for this latter pur- 
pose, have been presented. 

Much of the material called for, however, was ob- 
tainable only from the records of the Code Authority, and, 
in such cases, these have consequently been used. 



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CHAPTER I 

DESCRIPTION AND SCOPE 

History 

, 

Dress manufacturing is a young and healthy Industry. Prior to 1900 
the Industry is not even mentioned in the Census of Manufactures. Before 
that time — and even today for the much higher priced article — dresses 
were custom made to individual order and measure by dressmakers in the home. 
At the present time Dress Manufacturing is one of the largest of the apparel 
industries. 

Scope of the Code 

As defined by the Dress Manufacturing Code and covered by this report, 
the Dress Manufacturing Industry includes "the manufacture and sale by the 
manufacturer in whole or in part, in the United States on the North American 
Continent, of women's, misses', and juniors' dresses, dressmakers' ensembles, 
and waists when used with ensembles, whether such manufacture and distribu- 
tion shall be by inside or outside manufacturers, contractors, or otherwise; 
provided that nothing in this definition shall include the manufacture of 
inexpensive dresses made of material of which cotton is the chief content 
and generally known in the trade as a house dress or house dresses." 

Recent Changes 

The Dress Industry has undergone many significant changes within the 
last decade. Prices have crystallized into definite price ranges as shown 
on many of the following tables. This has resulted in a strong tendency for 
specialization, with the result that today most manufacturers make dresses 
of a few price lines only. 

Coexistent with specialization and price-line development there has 
been a marked shift toward lower prices dresses. This has been accelerated 
by the popularity of cottons which are becoming increasingly important in 
this field. 

Perhaps the most striking recent change has been the almost complete 
unionization of the Industry. Although unions have existed in the Industry 
for a number of years they had largely broken down prior to the enactment of 
the National Industrial Recovery Act. At that time a relatively small por- 
tion of the industry was unionized. Under the impetus and protection given 
by the Act, the Industry has been almost completely unionized in the last two 
years. 

There appears to be some doubt as to whether this stronghold can be 
maintained in view of the Supreme Court decision, and also in view of the 
widespread use of contractors and other practices which tend toward evasion 
of union agreements and make difficult their policing and enforcement. 

General Operation of the Industry 

The financial condition of manufacturers often determines the source from 
which the cloth and other raw materials are purchased. The cloth may be 

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bought direct from the weaving mills, through commission agents, or in the 
case of the very small manufacturer, from the cloth jobber. 

The manufacturer who maintains his own inside shop next cuts the cloth 
according to pattern. This is done "by "laying up" many thicknesses of the 
material r anging from 4 to 6 to as many as 150 ply depending upon the number 
of orders and whether the cutting is to be done by machine or by hand. After 
cutting, the cut portions are sewn together to form the dress. The completed 
dresses are next pressed, trimmed by hand with ornaments and buttons, and 
then packed for distribution. 

Manufacturers who employ contractors often cut the material on their 
own premises and then send it to the contractor who completes the manufac- 
turing operations and returns the completed dresses to the manufacturer. 

The product is distributed bjr sales direct to retail outlets, by sales 
to jobbers, and in many instances by sales through resident or commission 
buyers located in New York, for their out of town customers. 

Because of the style factor, the small quantities usually purchased at 
one time, and the light weight of the merchandise, dresses are usually shipped 
by express or parcel post. 

Size of the Industry 

The Dress Manufacturing Industry in 1934 was composed of approximately 
2,000 manufacturers engaged in the production and distribution of dresses. l/ 
As sho?m in Table I below, the Industry expanded from 1,634 establishments, 
employing 63,593 workers, with annual production valued at about $153,000,000 
in 1914, to 3,518 establishments employing 88,223 with an annual production 
of about $823,000,000 in 1929. 

TABLE I 



Growth of the Dress Manufacturing Industry 
in the United States, 1914-1933 



Year 



Number of Average 
Establish- Number of 
ments Wage Earners 



Number of 
Garments 
( thousands) 



Value of 
Product 
(thousands) 



1914 
1921 
1929 
1931 
1933 



1,634 
2,653 
3,518 
3,101 
2,305 



63,593 
53,468 
88,223 
79,726 
73,493 



162,837 
166,720 
145,238 



$153,116 
375,330 
823,271 
617,818 
376,480 



Source: 1914 and 1921 data from Levine, The Garment Worker , The figures, 

furnished by the Bureau of the Census, include waists and children's 

dresses but not house dresses. 

1929, 1931, and 1933 data from special tabulation of the Bureau of 

the Census covering women's, misses' and juniors' dresses. Includes 

only establishments whose products are valued at $5,000 or more 

annually. 



1/ The Dress Code Authority. 



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Geographical Concentration 



Geographically the Industry is highly concentrated in and around New 
York City. In 1929, 72 per cent of the establishments in the Industry 
were located in Hew York State. These establishments employed 52.6 per 
cent of the employees and produced 76.5 per cent of the total value of 
the product. Chicago and Philadelphia are other important centers, pro- 
ducing in 1929, 5.2 and 4.4 per cent respectively, of the total value of 
the product. A similar distribution of the Industry for other years is 
shown in Tables II and III. 

TABLE II 

Number of Establishments, By Principal States 



State 



1929 



1931 



1933 



U. S. Total 



3,518 



3,101 



2,305 



California 
Illinois 
Massachusetts 
New York 
Pennsylvania 



118 


96 


98 


209 


182 


122 


108 


118 


102 


2,537 


2,197 


1,609 


140 


132 


74 



Other States 



406 



376 



300 



Source: Special tabulation of the Bureau of the Census covering women's, 

misses', and juniors' dresses made by both "regular" and "contract" 
firms. Only establishments whose products are valued at $5,000 
or more are included. 



TABLE III 
Location of Concerns and Sales, 
by Important Cities, 1931 



City 



llumber of 
Concerns 



Total Sales 



Amount 
(OOP's) 



Per Cent 
Total 



of 



U. S. Total 2,080 

New York City 1,383 

Chicago 180 

•Philadelphia 109 

Los Angeles 95 

Boston 79 

Cleveland 22 

St. Louis 40 

Baltimore 10 

San Pran cisco 18 

Other Cities 114 



$805,183 

663,183 

44,399 

30,465 

22,184 

20,251 

9,136 

8,963 

2,875 

2,529 

31,197 



100.0 

78.6 
5.5 
3.8 
2.8 
2. 5 
1.1 
1.1 
,4 
.3 

3.9 



Source: National Credit Office. 



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Tiie Code Authority records indicate that the practice of having many 
"branch establishments throughout the country is not prevalent in this 
Industry. The number and location of the establishments of the 10 firms 
having "branches in more than one state are shown in Table IV. 

TABLE IV 

Number of Dress Firms Located in One State 
With Branch Offices in Other States, 1934 



State 



Location of Branch Offices or Subsidiaries 
No . of New New 
Firms York Jersey Conn. Ohio Mo. Calif. 



Total 


10 


3 


4 


New York 


6 




4 


New Jersey 


1 


1 




Connecticut 


1 


1 




Missouri 


1 


1 




Texas 


1 







1 



Source: Certificates of Compliance, Code Authority. 

The practice of contracting, however, is widespread. In this 
practice contractors perform the manufacturing operations on materials 
owned by manufacturers or jobbers, making a certain charge for the labor 
involved. Manufacturers in one state often employ contractors in another 
state. Table V shows the number of firms in given states which employ 
contractors in other states. 

TABLE V 

Number of Dress Manufacturers and Jobbers in 
C-iven States Employing Contractors 
in Other States, 1934 



juci/C6 



No. of 
Manufacturers 
& Jobbers 



S tates in which Contractors are Located 

New 
Jersey Conn. Pa. Md. Vt. Puerto Rico 



Total 


299 


465 


98 


33 


2 


2 


2 


Hew York 


294 


463 


98 


32 


2 


1 


2 


Pennsylvania 


3 


3 












Maryland 


1 






1 








Wisconsin 


1 










1 





Source: Dress Code Authority. 

Table VI indicates the high turnover among firms engaged in dress 
manufacturing, registrations under the Dress Code having increased from 
1,364 at the beginning of 1934 to 2,078 at the end of that year. During 
this year 356 firms ceased making dresses, leaving a net registration 



of 1,712 at the end of 1934. 
important areas. 



This table also shows registrations Dy 



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TABIE VI 

Registrations Under Dress Code January 1934, 
New Registrations during 1934, and Number of 
Dress Manufacturers and Jobbers Going Out of 
Business 1934, By Important Producing States 



State 



No. Registered No. Registered 
Jan, 1934 Jan. 1934 plus 

New Registra- 
tions During 
1934 



No. Going Out 


Net. No 


of Business 


Regis- 


During 1934 


tered 




End of 




1934 


366 


1712 


25 


147 


16 


163 


12 


50 


290 


1163 


6 


55 



U. S. Total 


1364 


California 


71 


Illinois 


127 


Massachusetts 


49 


New York 


934 


Pennsylvania 


49 


Other States 


84 



2078 

172 
179 

62 

1453 

61 

151 



17 



134 



Source: The Dress Code Authority. 

According to the May 4, 1935 issue of Current Analysis of Insolvency 
Trends "by Dun and Bradstreet, Incorporated, for the first four months of 
1935 the Dress Industry showed 1,38 per cent of the total number of firms 
insolvent. This is the highest percentage of any indust ry shown on their 
Code classification. The high number of failures in this Industry is due 
to a number of factors; notably, the small amount of capital investment 
needed to go into the business, the vigorous and fierce competition ex- 
isting in the Industry, and the large number of small concerns. Unfortu- 
nately figures showing the total amount of the liabilities involved in 
these failures are not available. 

Competitive products 

Ensembles, which consists of a coat, skirt/ and blouse, or of a coat 
and dress, harmoniously designed to be worn together, compete with dresses 
for women's apparel dollars. 

Additional competition is given the Dress Industry by products 
manufactured under the Cotton Garment Code, This competition has become 
increasingly serious recently due to the style trend toward cottons. 
According to the Cotton Garment Code Authority 9,382,000 dozen cotton 
wash dresses valued at $103,300»000 were produced in 1934. 



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CHAPTER II 

LABOR STATISTICS 

Number of Employees 

In 1929 the Dress Industry employed 88,223 workers. Employment in 
this Industry had declined to 73,493 workers in 1933. No official figures 
for actual number employed are available for later periods. The most im- 
portant area in employment is New York State where more than half of the 
total employment was concentrated in 1929. Table VII shows employment 
for important areas for 1929, 1931, and 1933. 

TABLE VII 



Average Number of Employees by Important 
Dress Manufacturing States, 1929, 1931 and 1933 



sJ 



State 1929 1931 1933 

U. S. Total 88,223 79,724 73,493 

California 3,249 3,200 3,211 

Illinois 8,515 8,723 7,103 

Massachusetts 2,676 3,196 2,355 

New York 46,376 39,725 36,404 

Pennsylvania 5,940 4,887 4,045 

Other States 21,467 19,993 20,375 

Source: Special tabulation of the Bureau of the Census covering women's, 

misses' and juniors' dresses made by both "regular" and "contract" 
firms includes only establishments whose products are valued at 
$5,000 or more annually. 

a/ Skilled and unskilled workers of all classes: the average number 

on the payroll during one week at middle of each month, 1929-1931; 
March, June, September and December, 1933. 

Total Annual Wages 

Total annual wages in the Dress Industry in 1929 amounted to 
$118,395,000. By 1933 the total annual wages had declined to $57,676,000. 
Table VIII shows total payrolls for important areas for 1929, 1931, and 
1933. 



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TABLE VIII 

Total Annual Wages by Important Dress 

Producing States, 1929, 1931, and 1953 

( In thousands) 



State 1929 1931 1933 

U. S. Total $118,395 $88,653 $59,673 

California 3,645 3,005 2,259 

Illinois 9,086 7,249 4,569 

Massachusetts 3,538 3,522 1,827 

New York 78,932 54,900 37,790 

Pennsylvania 6,118 4,594 2,744 

Other States 17,076 15,383 10,504 

Source: Special tabulation of the Bureau of the Census covering women's, 

misses', and juniors' dresses made "by "both "regular" and "contract" 
firms. Includes only establishments whose products are valued at 
$5,000 or more annually. 



Hourly Earnings 

Official figures on hourly earnings are not available prior to 1933. 
According to estimates submitted by the International Ladies' Garment 
Workers' Union, hourly earnings in 1930 were 84 cents per hour, declining 
to 49 cents per hour for 1932. 1/ 

According to a special tabulation made by the Bureau, of Labor Statistics, 
average hourly earnings were 54.9 cents per hour for 1933. In 1934 they 
had increased to 72.8 cents per hour. Similar improvement is seen in the 
average weekly wage. Improvement is also seen in the employment and pay- 
roll indexes for 1934 as compared with 1933. (See Tables IX and X). 



1/ Hourly earnings based on returns from 60 manufacturing and contract 
shops, the figures being averages in which the two types are weighted 
according to their relative importance in the Industry. 

TABLE IX 

Average Hourly Wage Rate, Average Hours Per Week, 
and Average Weekly Hours, 1933 and 1934 a/ 



Item 1933 1934 

Average Hourly Wage 

Rate b/ $.549 $.728 

Average Weekly Earnings c/ 19.51 21.08 

Average Weekly Hours b/ 34.9 27.3 

Source: Unpublished data secured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 

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cooperation with the Division of Research and Planning, NRA. 

a/ Reporting establishments considered to he almost completely 

covered hy the Dress Manufacturing Code. Data reported for week 
ending nearest the 15th of the month. . 

b/ Based upon a representative sample covering an average of the 

establishments and nearly 650 employees in 1933 and a much larger 
group in 1934. 

c/ Based upon a representative sample covering an average of 76 es- 
tablishments and about 3500 employees in 1933 and a much larger 
group in 1934. 



TABLE X 
Indexes of Employment, Payrolls, and Man-Hours, 
By Months, 1933-1934 a/ 
(1933=100) 

Year and Month b/ Employment c/ Payrolls c/ Man-Hours d/ 



1933 








January 


96.0 


90.2 


..01.2 


February 


103.5 


93.9 


118.4 


March 


82.7 


65.0 


61.5 


April 


108.7 


104.5 


129.7 


May 


116.6 


112.4 


134.5 


June 


106.8 


98.4 


112.8 


July 


73.0 


63.1 


70.5 


August 


91.1 


83.1 


92.4 


September 


115.5 


152.4 


121.3 


October 


114.5 


132.9 


104.4 


November 


96.6 


94.6 


68.9 


December 


95.0 


109.5 


84.4 


Average 


100.0 


100.0 


100.0 


1934 








January 


110.0 


121.8 


95.6 


February 


117.8 


142.6 


98.7 


March 


117.9 


143.3 


102.8 


April 


120.5 


154.2 


108.2 


May 


122.4 


155.4 


102.9 


June 


100.2 


107.4 


69.1 


July 


76.2 


76.1 


49.3 


August 


114.5 


132.5 


90.7 


September 


123.6 


142.7 


95.5 


October 


125.2 


154.5 


96.7 


November 


107.1 


106.8 


67.8 


December 


109.7 


123.0 


75.7 



Average 



112.0 



130.0 



87.8 



(Table X continued on next page) 



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Source; Unpublished data secured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 
cooperation with the Division of Research and Planning, ERA. 

a/ Reporting establishments considered to be almost completely 

covered by the Dress Manufacturing Code, 
b/ Data reported for week ending nearest the 15th of the month. 
c/ Based upon a representative sample covering an average of 76 

establishments and about 3,500 employees in 1933 and a much 

larger group in 1934. 
d/ Computed: index of employment times average hours worked per 

week reduced to 1933=100. 



Seasonality 

The man-hour index on Teble X indicates the highly seasonal nature 
of the Industry. The International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union in a 
brief submitted at the time the Code was under consideration stated: 
"Women's clothing is by a wide margin the most seasonal of the 24 
(important) industries reported." 1/ 

The tendency is for the seasonal nature of an industry to increase 
during times of depression. Thus the ratio of the lowest to the highest 
employment in the Dress Industry (as shown by the special tabulation of 
the Bureau of the Census) declined from about 81 per cent in 1929 to 
73 per cent for 1931. In 1933 employment during the dull season was 
62.7 per cent of that during the active season. In 1934 the ratio 
of the lowest to the highest employment was 60.9 per cent. 

1/ Cited from Seasonal Variations in Industry and Trade , published by the 
National Bureau of Economic Research, 1933. 



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CHAPTER III 
MATERIALS 



Cloth made of silk, cotton, rayon and wool is the principal ra\? 
material which goes into the manufacture of dresses. The silk, from 
which silk cloth is made, is imported from China and Japan. New Jersey 
and Pennsylvania are the most important areas in which silk cloth mills 
are located. The cotton, from which cotton cloth is made, is grown in 
the Sou.th.ern States. Cotton cloth mills are located both in the Southern 
Atlantic States and in New England. The wool used in the manufacture of 
woolen cloth is grown in the Southwestern States. Together with some 
imported wool, this is made into cloth in woolen mills which are largely 
concentrated, in New England, Rayon is made synthetically from cellulose 
fibres such as cotton and wood. The industry is scattered among the 
Atlantic Coast States, oftentimes in conjunction with other cloth mills* 

By far the most important of these cloths is silk, dresses of 
this material valued at a total of $241,967,000 having "been produced in 
1933, The relative importance of the various materials may he judged 
from the following tabulation of production by various kinds of dresses 
for 1933. 



TABLE XI 
Value of Dresses, by Principal Kinds of Materials, 1933 



Material Used Total Value 

(in thousands) 



Total $399,195 

Silk 241,967 

Wool 28,012 

Rayon 40, 576 

Others not specified 88,640 
(principally cotton) 



Source: Special tabulation of Bureau of the Census covering women's, 
misses' and juniors' dresses made in establishments engaged 
primarily in manufacture of such dresses. Receipts for con- 
tract work included. Includes only establishments whose 
products are valued at $5,000 or more annually. 



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Table XII shows that about 55 per cent of the value of the product 
is in the cost of raw materials. The total amount of the cost of raw 
materials fell from $452,920,000 in 1929 to $211,995,000 in 1933. An 
interesting fact shown "by this table is that in 1933 labor cost represented 
only 11»1 per cent of the value of the product. 



TABLE XII 

Per Cent That Labor Cost and Cost of Materials 
are of Total Value of Product, 
1929, 1931, and 1933 



Total Value Total Labor Cost Total Materials Cost 

Year of Product Amount Per Cent Amount Per Cent 

(000 >s) (000 's) of Total (000's) of Total 



1929 


$794,830 


1931 


581,117 


1933 


379,865 



$41,98 2 11.1 



$452,920 
328,951 
211,995 



57.0 
56.6 
55.8 



Source: Special tabulation of the Bureau of the Census covering women's, 
misses', and junior's dresses made by "regular" firms only and 
not including "contract" shops. Includes only establishments 
whose products are valued at $5,000 or more annually. 



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CKAPTEP IV 
PRODUCTION AliD DISTljPUTIOw 

The Industry reached its -peak production in 1929 when 162,837,000 
garments valued at ;?S23, 271,000 -.'ere produced. In 1933, although produc- 
tion in units had declined to only l'-!-^, 230', 000, the total value of the 
product had. declined to $376,^80,000. Thin trend toward lovrer priced 
garments is further indicated in Tahlc .'".III -..-hich shows production "by 
price lines. 

TABLE XIII 

Total Value and Volume of Production 
1929, 1331, and 1333 



Volume of Froduction Value of Production 
IZind of Product ( Thous and dr e s s e s ) (In thousands) 

1329 1931 1335 1929 1931 1953 

Total 162,837 167,132 1^5,233' $323,271 $6lS,l62 $376, USO 

iiade to f.etail 

for Under ;)1.00 22,366 33,923 a/ 

Ol.oo- 1.99 35,736 3*+, 12S sJ 

2.00- 2.95 15,903 13,253 a/ 

3.00- 4.39 lU,190 2^,798 a/ 

5.00- 3. 99 3^,535 33,330 a/ 

10.00-2U.99 31,212 19,822 a/ 

25.OC and over 8,3^0 2,322 a/ 



iU,239 


13,^90 


a/ 


35,901+ 


32,7^1 


a/ 


26,502 


30,63s 


a/ 


44,017 


76,063 


a/ 


187,131 


ISO, 086 


a/ 


323,167 


215,478 


a/ 


192,311 


64,666 


sJ 



Source: Census of 1 Manufactures - "Women's Clothing." Data apply to all 
dresses, including those made "by Dress Manufacturing firms (ex- 
cluding receipts for contract -..-or'.:) and. those made "by firms not 
so classified. Includes only establishments vmose products rre 
valued at $5,000 or more annually, 
a/ "Jo comparable data. 



5313 



-14- 

Table XIV shows total production of dresses "by important areas based 
on label sales made by the Code Authority in 1934. This table indicates 
a total production of 84,823,895 dresses in 1-934. 

TABLE XIV 

Label Sales of Price Lines for United States 
and Important Producing States, 193^ 



Price 


United 














Line 


States 


Calif. 


111. 


Mas s . 


N.Y. 


Pa. 


Others 


Total 
















Labels 


84,824 


1,171 


2,326 


1,544 


76,051 


1,616 


2,115 


1.00 


2,l4g 


76 


SI 





1,851 


67 


75 


2.25 


11,063 


3S 


405 


4os 


9,805 


305 


io4 


2.75 


4,665 


16 


181 


4i 


4,345 


78 


5 


2.27^ 


12,627 


113 


91 


ISO 


11,915 


157 


172 


3*75 


16,689 


169 


196 


174 


15, 511 


266 


375 


4,75 


l4,05S 


l46 


52 


169 


13,229 


121 


34o 


6.75 


7,4i6 


107 


299 


2S0 


6,os6 


328 


317 


7,75 


4,020 


25 


2 


93 


3,814 


75 


12 


S.75 


3,039 


110 


263 


43 


2,339 


27 


258 


10,75 


5,913 


248 


5U6 


75 


4,4so 


165 


4oo 


12.75 


915 


57 


74 


20 


74o 





25 


13.75 


360 


15 


10 





319 


15 


1 


16.50 


1,186 


36 


104 


4o 


962 


15 


29 


IS 4.50 


256 


8 


15 


25 


205 





3 


22.50 


31s 


4 


10 





303 





1 


29.OO 


108 











108 








39.00 


29 











29 








49,00 


16 


3 








13 








and up 

















Source: The Dress Code Authority. 

Table XV shows estimates of annual value of production by important 
areas based on label sales made by the Code Authority in 193^» This table 
indicates that the product in 1934 was valued at about $428,464,250. 

TABLE XV 
Estimated Dollar Volume of Production Based on 
Label Sales for the United States and 
Important Producing States, 1934 



State 



Dollar Volume a/ 
(in thousands) 



U. S. Total 

California 
Illinois 
Mass achus e 1 1 s 

S313 



Continued on next page 



428,464 

8,317 

16,219 
8,158 



-15- 
TABLE XV (Cont'd) 



State 



Dollar Volume a/ 
(in thousands) 



New York 

P ennsylvania 



Other States 



37^,9^ 
7.3UU 

13,^22 



Source: The Dress Code Authority. 

a/ The dollar volume of the Dress Industry 

must he considered a minimum amount "because each price line 
(shown in Tahle XIV) includes all dresses at the indicated 
price line and all dresses ahove that, up to, "but not includ- 
ing, the next higher price line. 



Tahle XVI shows production from "regular" dress manufacturers and 
does not include the production of "contract" shops. 

TABLE XVI 

Value of Products "by Important 
Producing States, 1929, 1931f and 1933 
(in Thousands) 



State 



1929 



1931 



1933 



U. S. Total 

California 
Illinois 
Massachusetts 
New York 
Pennsylvania 

Other States 



$79U, S30 

16,669 

^3,721 

19,U0S 

610, 7S2 

36,U!+5 
67,805 



$581,117 

13,^27 
32,376 
16,097 

2U,g00 

52,276 



$379, 865 
9,902 

21,232 

9,312 

287,306 

12,0^9 

Uo,oiH 



Source: Special tabulation of the 3ureau of the Census covering women's, 
misses', and juniors' dresses made "by "regular" firms only and 
does not include "contract" firms. Includes only establishments 
whose products are valued at $5,000 or more annually. 

Although there are about 1,000 firms engaged in jobbing and selling 
dresses at wholesale, many retail establishments purchase direct from the 
manufacturer. There are also large resident buyers located in New York 
Cit2'- who purchase a large volume of dresses for stores scattered through- 
out the country. 

Dresses are sold to women in department stores, dry goods, and other 
clothing stores located in every village of any size in the country. 
Table XVII shows a total of 1+5,056 establishments in 1929 selling dresses 
at retail. 



3313 



-16- 



TABLE XVII 



6l 


2,222 


103 


1,520 


12S 


2,595 


3^0 


6,607 


55 


1,995 


S7 


3,76i 



Number of Wholesale and Retail Establishments 
Distributing Products of the Industry - 1J29 

Wholesale a/ Retail b/ 
State 1929 19 29 

U. S. Total 997 ^-5,056 

California 

Massachusetts 

Illinois 

New York 

Ohio 

Pennsylvania 

Other States 223 26,296 



Source: ]J. S. Census of Distribution,, 1930 ; 

Retail Distribution and Wholesale Dis- 
tribution . 

„a/ Includes following types of stores: 
clothing, general line; clothing and 
furnishing; clothing, women's and 
children's. 

b/ Includes following types of stores: 

department, general merchandise, "with 
food" and "without food" groups only, 
family clothing; women's ready-to-wear. 



As an indication of the interstate movement of goods in the Dress 
Industry s attention is called to Table XVIII which shows sales by price 
lines and sales within and outside of New York State of 97 manufacturers 
and jobbers located in Now York State. It is seen that for nearly 
every price line about three quarters of the sales are made to establish- 
ments located outside New York State. 

Additional evidence of the interstate sales of dresses is shown 
in T a ble XIX, a compilation of sales ^oj state of destination taken from 
the books of S manufacturers and jobbers. 



S313 



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-19- 

Jurther indication of interstate sale of this product is shorm in 
Table XX which shows the number and amount of claims from important purchas- 
ing states for returned merchandise, 

TABLS XX 

Retailers' Returns to Hew York Ilanufacturers 
Handled "by Dress Code Authority Hovember 1, 193^, 
to April 25, 1935, t>y Important Purchasing States 

Number of Number of Value of 
State Retailers Claims Claims 

U. S. Total 7,062 32,2^9 $^75,991 

1,070 is, 217 

1,871 30,^73 

2,3^3 39,7^0 

1,030 13,9^7 

^,5'jK 90,298 

3,0511- Uo,7S9 

3,876 55,260 

13,^-71 187,267 

Source: The Dress Code Authority, Report No. 1 . 



Advertising Media 

Dresses are nationally advertised in fashion magazines such as Vogue 
and Harpers Bazaar as well as practically all women's magazines. In 
addition, trade publications as Women's Fear carry such advertising. Re- 
tailers extensively advertise the product through the local daily press. 



California 


166 


Illinois 


258 


Has s achus e 1 1 s 


269 


Hew Jersey 


265 


Hew York 


1,020 


Ohio 


^58 


P ennsylvania 


688 


Other States 


^,033 



8313 



-20- 

CHAPTER V 

TRADE PRACTICES 

Manufacturers in the Dress Industry claim that one of the greatest evils 
of the Industry has been the practice of retailers returning merchandise. 
The Dress Code attempts partially to control this evil by establishing regu- 
lations for the return of merchandise. Among the reasons for which manu- 
facturers may accept returned merchandise shipped bach within five days of 
receipt are: errors in shipment, delay in delivery, defective materials or 
workmanship, and breach of contract. Merchandise returned after five days 
must be examined by an impartial representative of the Code Authority before 
acceptance. 

These regulations have served to reduce the amount of returned goods 
with resulting savings to manufacturers. Table XXI shows dollar sales and 
dollar value of returns for various priced goods for 1933 and 1934. This 
table indicates that this provision of the fair trade practices of the Code 
has resulted in large savings to manufacturers, for example on a $246,009,000 
volume of business in 1933, returns amounted to $24,575,000; while for 1934 
returns were about the same amount ($24,429,000) for the much larger volume 
of sales $316,183,000. 



8313 



-21- 





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-22- 

Practices Now Prevalent 

It is believed by many members of the Dress Industry that piracy of 
designs is an extremely harmful and unfair trade practice. This practice 
continues to be prevalent for many reasons. In the first place, it is 
difficult to enforce a codal provision prohibiting it because of the dif- 
ficulty in proving priority. Then too, many claim that fundamental designs 
are public property and new ones are created merely by slightly altering 
them. Others claim that business is stimulated and the whole Industry bene- 
fitted as a result of the widened demand caused by copying. 



8313 



-23- 

CHAPTER VI 
GSNEEAL IitFOBMATIOl 

Industrial Associations 

The associations listed below predominate in the Dress Manufacturing 
Industry and were represented on the Code Authority. All the associations 
now carry collective "bargaining agreements with the Joint Board of Dress- 
makers of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union. 

1. The National Association of Dress Manufacturers, Incorporated. 

This is an association of manufacturers and jobbers — principally jobber; 
— working mostly in the lower price garments. The Wholesale Dress Manufactur- 
ing Association was originally organized as a trade practice association "but 
in 1933, when the name was changed to the National Association of Dress Manu- 
facturers, Incorporated, under pressure of the garment makers' strike at that 
time, the association "became a vehicle for collective "bargaining with the 
union. This group has a membership of nearly 700, about 300 of whom operate 
inside shops; the "balance are mostly contractors. Mr. Mortimer Lanzitt is 
president and Mr. Is ado re Scharsman is secretary. 

2. Affiliated Dress Manufacturers, Incorporated. 

This is an association which was organized in 1929, and is composed of 
manufacturers working mostly in the higher price lines. It was organized 
exclusively for collective "bargaining agreements and has a membership of 
slightly over 250. Approximately 178 of these members employed contractors. 
Mr. Morris Kolchin is president. 

3. United Association of Dress Manufacturers, Incorporated. 

The United Association was organized in 1933 through a merger of the Dree 
Manufacturers' Association (organized in 1917 to succeed the Dress and Waist 
Manufacturers' Association, which was organized in 1910, and the Metropolitan 
Dress Manufacturers' Association, organized in 1932). The association carries 
collective bargaining agreements. 

Guilds 

In addition to the above associations there are several guilds, such as 
the Fashion Creators' Guild, which are becoming an increasingly important 
influence in the Dress Industry. 

Present Position of the Industry ■_■— 

According to statements of Morris Kolchin, President of the Affiliated 
Dress Manufacturers' Association, the Industry at the present time is m one 
of the strongest -positions it has been in for some time. This is due partly 
to a levelling out of costs among the various members by the Code wage ^levels 
the -protection and savings due to the fair trade practice provisions of the 
Code, notably the return clause; and to the increased purchasing power ox one 
people as a whole with the resulting beneficial effect upon retailers and 
business in general. 



-24- 

Jii.st of Experts 

Individuals thoroughly familiar with the Industry have teen chosen from 
"both the manufacturers' associations and the labor union. Those qualified 
to present the Industry's problems from the manufacturer^ viewpoint are: 

Morris Kolchin, 

President of the Affiliated Dress 
Manufacturing Association 

Mortimer Lanzitt, 

President of National Dress Manufacturers' 
Association 

Jack Mintz, 

Mamifacturer 

Those especially well qualified to present the problems from the point of 
view of labor are: 

David Dub in sky, 

President of the International Ladies' 
Garment Workers Union 

Julius Hachman, 

International Ladies' Garment 
Workers Union 

Charles Green, 

International Ladies' Garment 
Tforkers Union 



8313#