Empowering Women
in Manufacturing And Business

Successful women sharing their experiences and life stories that contribute to the greater good of all, improving products, making things better and safer, and fulfilling lives.


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#174 The Evolution of the Textile and Garment Industry with Eileen Small


Since Eileen Small entered the textile and garment industries in the 1980’s, a lot has changed. When she started out, close to 90% of garment manufacturing took place in the USA and today this number has dropped to less than 10%. Furthermore, technology has made the world a much smaller place, and a more entrepreneurial one, and sustainability and transparency have become vital to staying relevant. In today’s episode, Eileen gives us an inside look at what it was like sourcing piece goods (commonly known as fabrics) from all over the world in her twenties, and the nuances that exist within the textile and garment industries. As a trade show veteran, Eileen also has valuable advice to share about how to get the most out of these events, and what you can expect from some of the upcoming ones that are going to be held in the near future. The textile and apparel industries have some of the most responsive and attentive supply chains of all manufacturing sectors, and you will have a greater appreciation for the apparel that clothes you after listening to this episode!

To watch the episode, CLICK HERE


Rosemary Coates

Ms. Coates is the Executive Director of the Reshoring Institute and the President of Blue Silk Consulting, a Global Supply Chain consulting firm. She is a best-selling author of: 42 Rules for Sourcing and Manufacturing in China and 42 Rules for Superior Field Service and The Reshoring Guidebook. 

Ms. Coates lives in Silicon Valley and has worked with over 80 clients worldwide. She is also an Expert Witness for legal cases involving global supply chain matters.  She is passionate about Reshoring.


Eileen Small

Eileen Small is currently a Market Research consultant for Messe Frankfurt USA for their fashion and apparel trade show events.   Experience in the textile research & development field gives her a unique perspective in communicating with both exhibitors and buyers at the Northeast’s largest textile and apparel trade show.  Eileen is responsible for attendee acquisition as well as developing and organizing the seminar platform each season.  Prior to joining Messe Frankfurt Eileen was the Director of Fabric R & D at David’s Bridal for 10 years and was the Director of Fabric R & D for women’s wear brands at Liz Claiborne for 16 years.

special guest photo