A well-chosen name for a clothing company is the perfect opportunity to pack a punch of personality. It’s not like naming a brand of paper plates or brake pads; style conveys so much about who an apparel brand is. And naming that brand is all about creativity and self-expression.
That doesn’t mean brilliant apparel company name ideas are going to strike you in a jolt of inspiration. Just like a business plan, a name needs to be practical and strategic. It needs to capture the essence of what you do and why you do it, without getting into the weeds. It’s a tall order, but these NameStormers tips will help you arrive at the perfect name.
Determine Your Brand Persona
It’s impossible to land on a fitting name without determining the traits you want your target to associate with your brand. Narrow your focus by aligning your business with one of these five brand dimensions:
- Sincerity: wholesomeness, family values, honesty. Examples: baby shampoo, home security monitoring, charities
- Excitement: fun, youthful, imaginative. Examples: dating apps, entertainment companies, fast food
- Competence: intelligent, strategic, successful. Examples: banks, healthcare providers, law offices
- Sophistication: luxurious, elegant, expensive. Examples: jewelry, luxury cars, upscale hotels
- Ruggedness: tough, outdoorsy, adventurous. Examples: outdoor clothing brand, plant nursery, hardware store
Let Your Personality Shine
Once you’ve determined your brand traits, lean into them. The most successful clothing brands are able to vividly convey personality without getting too descriptive or literal.
Clothing brand Club Monaco nailed the high-end, sophisticated persona: “club” conveys exclusivity while “Monaco” calls to mind wealth, luxury, and leisure. Similarly, the online retailer REVOLVE positions itself on the exciting, cutting-edge of fashion by evoking the idea of change and ever-evolving trends. The North Face and Patagonia conjure mental images of rugged travel and adventure. Cutesy, youthful boutiques like Francesca’s, Hazel & Olive, and Paisley Grace use women’s names to come off as personable and relatable. And the Mint Julep Boutique is named after a classic Southern cocktail, paying subtle homage to its Alabama roots.
Instead of telling your target who you are, use evocative language that excites the imagination and leaves people wanting to know more.
Choose a Name that Lends Itself to A Naming Architecture
Naming architecture provides a coherent connection between your company name, your products, and your overall brand. It also provides a road map for the future and takes the guesswork out of naming new products as you grow your apparel company. For this reason, it’s helpful to have the concept of a nomenclature system in mind when you name your company.
The Adidas Boost™ line of running shoes is a prime example of cohesive naming architecture. “Boost” meshes with the brand’s athletic, competitive persona, and the various products — Ultraboost, Pulseboost, Senseboost, Alphaboost, Solarboost — convey traits that are specific to their unique designs.
ModCloth, too, has a consistent naming architecture; it pioneered the use of cutesy puns like “Windswept Off My Feet Maxi Dress” and “Wait Tulle Then Strapless Dress.” Other women’s boutiques that have adopted the first name trend often continue this logic with product names like “Lily Dress” or “Amelia Skirt.” Whether it’s an overall vibe or an exact science, it’s important to think of how your product names will relate to your company name.
Consult the Experts
The NameStormers seven-step process is three decades in the making, and we still learn from each other and our clients every day. We’ve named Fortune 500 companies and fledgling start-ups, nonprofits, and splashy luxury brands. The creative process of coming up with apparel company name ideas thrills and excites us, but we don’t coast on great ideas alone. Our strategy involves thoroughly vetting our favorite names for online availability and potential trademark issues, and then running them by you in order to get your feedback.
And we don’t just hand you a list of name options and call it a day; we tweak and retool and even go back to the brainstorming phase if necessary — all for one flat fee. We don’t charge our clients extra for doing the work it takes to land on a perfect name. If you’re ready to get started naming your clothing company, contact us today.