When I started Costume Source in 2017, I never thought I'd be spending countless nights wide awake at 4am researching laundry equipment and the average time it takes us to process each costume.
Well... I was wrong...!
Over the years we've grown really rapidly and the demand for our costumes is not only higher than its ever been, but it's still growing.
As we've grown, we've had to constantly adapt our processes to deal with the ever increasing demand.
We always want to supply great costumes to our customers, but when about 40% of the costumes returned to us are stained (blood and fake tan being the main culprits), this isn't always easy.
Checking, cleaning and booking in hundreds of costumes a day is no mean feat. At peak, it's several thousand a day. We have a full team of people who do nothing else and we use technology as much as we can, but the process of actually cleaning the costumes had proven to be a bottleneck.
We needed to completely rethink hire returns on an industrial scale.
After much research and planning, the installation of a lot of pipes, vents and three phase power, we're proud to announce the opening of our new laundry facility!
We've significantly increased our capacity with lots of room to grow. We can now process more costumes each hour than we used to be able to process each day.
Using the newest, most advanced industrial equipment (the majority made by Miele) allows us to process costumes using wet, dry and Ozone processes.
Miele is a renowned German appliance manufacturer and has always been synonymous with quality and innovation, so they were a natural choice for us.
Although this is a significant investment for us, we aren't prepared to do it at a cost to nature. This is why our new facility is designed with the environment in mind.
Laundry has traditionally been resource-intensive, but we aren't prepared to sacrifice our environmental credentials.
Each piece of equipment is designed to use less energy and resources, with precision auto-dosing and intelligent usage optimisation. We also recover 'waste' heat to use in other parts of the process. Miele's use of sustainable and recyclable materials further minimises the environmental impact of each machine's life-cycle.
As a company we have to grow sustainably. Each part of the business has to be able to deal with current and future demand. Let's face it, there is no point getting thousands more costumes if we can't actually process them!
We never 'close our books' or turn customers away if we have stock available that they want to hire.
As a business we operate at scale. This new facility allows us to continue being able to provide you a dependable service, even as this scale increases.
We've completely eliminated our returns queue. Our aim is that 95% of returns go through processing and return to the rail (ready to be hired again) the same day as they arrive back with us.
We always want to supply great costumes to our customers
Our new facility ensures we can continue to do this at the speed and capacity we need today and tomorrow.
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