General tips for planning your season

The task of ensuring everyone from the players, coaches, trainers and even the fans are geared up in time for the season can be overwhelming. Timelines are always a challenge, especially when final team selections fall alarmingly close to the start of the season. Making sure your sportswear or apparel order arrives not only on time but fits the players has been known to create additional angst. Juggling everyone involved, including those charged with managing the graphics and branding, while keeping the budget maintained can be demanding. We have the utmost respect for those in the community who take on the role of equipment or apparel manager, so our athletes can enjoy the season. We understand and would like to help.

Whether you are the captain of a pond hockey team, the athletic director at a school, a club coach, or part of a group of volunteers in charge of gearing your players for the season, In Team & Corporate sales we have developed some tips that will help you with planning and ordering for your upcoming season.

Before You Order

The more customized the longer the lead time.

Most sportswear is “customized” to some degree (crests, logos, name bars, designs, etc.). The more customization, the more time your order will take. The delivery date clock really doesn’t start until the graphic design is complete and the artwork has been approved.

Most orders take 4-6 weeks to complete.

Typically, customized team sportswear and apparel orders take 4 to 6 weeks to complete. Some in the industry may promise you a much faster timeline – be careful.

Prepare for setup fees.

Set-up fees apply to ensure design, layout, color considerations and pre-production work is properly managed, so your final product is perfect.

Minimum order numbers likely apply.

In virtually all cases with “team” business (apparel and decoration), minimum orders apply. As a rule, no less than 12 of any item can be ordered at team pricing. Minimums do not generally apply to equipment and hard goods, although there are savings when purchasing these in quantity.

Consider ordering extras.

You might want to consider ordering a few additional pieces. Sometimes, a last-minute change in the team results in the need for an extra jersey or two. Due to the minimum requirements, we don’t want you to find out that 2 extra jerseys are going to be much more expensive than you expected.

Rush orders may be possible for an additional fee.

Rush orders are very possible with many (but not all) of our suppliers, they are able to quickly turn some apparel and uniform items on a short notice. Rush fees apply – we’d like to help you avoid these by planning accordingly.

High demand, popular brands may require additional time or low availability.

Sometimes, the hottest brands can be the most challenging to order. High demand, coupled with the manufacturing process used by most, can lead to product not being available. We encourage our customers to always be open to a plan B, should one of our manufacturing partners run into a snag.

Reduce Order Stress

Plan in advance of the season as far ahead as possible.

Ideally, planning your apparel and gear should begin well in advance before the season. In a perfect world starting the process at least 3 months before the season starts is ideal, allowing yourself time to evaluate all the options available.

Consider an online ordering system.

The use of an on-line store can simplify the process immensely. The on-line store allows you to select the items for your group and then you leave the rest to us. We manage the orders and any customization, receive and sort the product, manage the financial transactions and deliver the goods to you. Click here to learn more about Order My Gear.

Take care with size and fit.

Proper sizing and fitting are critical. Relying on sizing charts alone can be risky. We can arrange to bring in sizing samples and host sizing night(s) at our facility or a location of your choosing. It can take a week or so to bring in samples if we don’t have them on hand – we’ll help you plan accordingly.

Take care with order accuracy.

Order changes can be tricky depending on the timing. Late additions can result in additional shipping fees or decoration charges. Art adjustments after final approval might involve additional costs if the files have already been created. And of course, all of this can slow down the process and affect delivery dates.

Very large orders may require putting product on hold in advance.

For very large orders “booking” your product may be recommended. Booking is simply putting product on hold and is done well in advance ensuring product will be available when you are ready to order. We negotiate on your behalf with the manufacturers and create a calendar to manage your booking orders.

Uniform & Apparel Checklist


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