Author Archives: lizeth maldonado

Lean Equipment Maintenance Program

Lean Equipment Maintenance Program

 

How to Sustain Your Lean Equipment Maintenance Program

Asset utilization, also called Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) or equipment capacity, is not just the responsibility of one department. It is the responsibility of the entire company. It has the focus of ensuring that nowhere in the world does another company have the same assets or produces greater capacity from those assets. It means being the best at getting the most out of the assets by measuring and managing availability, performance efficiency, and quality rate.

Certainly, maintenance priorities in a heavy machining plant will be different from an assembly plant or a chemical processing plant. Regardless, these practices can be applied across most production facilities:

  • Borrow from successful lean production techniques and process map your maintenance workflow. Beginning the mapping effort at the very beginning of your maintenance process and the flow of the process from one step to the next. 
  • When your facility is organized, you can more easily see areas for improvement. Depending on your facility, industry and specific needs, the use of 5s techniques can be important tools to help you identify problems in the maintenance process.
  • Schedule more frequent checks for older equipment. As equipment ages, parts and components will start to wear out sooner, and the maintenance window narrows.
  • Engineer machine improvements for maintainability and operability. Windows cut into guarding to give easier viewing of gauges will make the daily checks easier to perform and more likely to be completed.
  • Address operator alerts immediately. Beyond the operator and the proper performance of the checks, the maintenance organization must be ready to respond immediately to an abnormality that’s been raised as part of the operator checks.
  • Continually review spare part requirements. Remove any spare parts from stock as equipment and machines are retired.
  • Document and continually re-visit your operation’s maintenance history, including how critical items have addressed. 

Whether you use a computer based maintenance system, or you rely on a card file, or you have a white board in the maintenance area, the strategies, opportunities and approaches remain the same. Once implemented, the entire workforce  from senior management all the way down to the last mechanic hired, must adhere to the basic tenet: minimize unplanned downtime through proper preventive maintenance.

Leadership Skills

Leadership Skills

10 Tips to Enhancing Your Leadership Skills

We could all admit to ourselves that there is room for some improvement in the way we lead others. After all, it’s not the sort of skill that is easy to get 100% right all of the time. It might just be that we don’t specifically know what improvements to make, so here’s 10 ways to start:

  1. Get a reality check

Finding out what others think of our leadership style can be real eye opener, and is often the most powerful driver for change. Using a 360 survey where you receive feedback from your staff, peers and manager, gives you some concrete information on a sometimes intangible subject. 

  1. Don’t use the power of your position to get things done

If people are questioning why certain things are done, or the logic of decisions, never pull rank in response. A critical component of effective leadership is getting the buy-in from your team and colleagues.

  1. Don’t think of employees as things that need to be controlled or managed

Instead, give them the latitude to take actions and make decisions. Trust is a vital component of leadership. If you can’t trust people to do their jobs well, then you either have the wrong people in the jobs, or you have the right people but you haven’t trained them sufficiently. Let them do what they are there to do, without leaning over their shoulders all the time, or demanding to know how they spend each minute of their time.

  1. Listen, listen listen

If there are unhappy or disgruntled people in your business, you can guarantee that at some stage they’ve tried to tell you what the problem is. It’s likely you weren’t listening (or didn’t want to listen), or perhaps your initial reaction made the person think twice about bringing the problem to you.

  1. Stop providing solutions

Managers often achieve their positions after being technical specialists, and so will have an opinion or view on how to “fix” situations or problems. They believe that it’s faster to tell someone what to do, or do it themselves, than give their employees an opportunity to figure it out.

  1. Always be constructive always

Language and communication skills set great leaders apart from mediocre ones. Don’t patronise or be critical of others take complete responsibility for how you are heard. 

  1. Judge your success by the success of your team

The true success of a leader can be measured by the success of the people that work for them. As a manager of others, your prime responsibility is to ensure the success and development of your team. If they are successful, you will automatically be successful.

  1. Don’t do things just because they will “look good”

Nothing is more transparent than managers who make decisions and behave in ways simply to look good to their superiors. If you want to improve as a leader, one of the qualities you need is integrity.

  1. Include humour in your diet

Nobody likes to work in an environment that is devoid of any fun. People are more productive when they are enjoying themselves. 

  1. Let people get to know the real you

Being open about yourself helps to break down the barriers that hierarchy puts in place. When your employees know the person behind the faзade, that’s when you start to build the foundations of good leadership  trust and respect.

“Leadership skills are considered to be important traits which can help you get to the top of your career field” commented Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of Grupo Denim.

Threads and their characteristics

Threads

Type of threads and their characteristics

If you want to start a sewing project, there are many different types of threads that you can use, to know the different ones, continue reading this article.

“Only threads of great quality can guarantee a good manufactured garment, that is why Grupo Denim works with vendors compromised with the quality of their products, to make sure we only deliver garments that will strictly meet our customer’s specifications”, said Salomon Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of this company.

Here are the different threads that you can find:

  • Cotton– This is the most popular thread, as it is easier to find and buy and it is manufactured in different weights, if you are getting this thread, we recommend you the mercerized one, as it is softer and the color is more consistent.
  • Polyester – Covered with cotton, the polyester thread is also known as multipurpose, it has a center made of thread which makes it stronger and elastic and it is perfect to sew natural fibers and weaves.
  • Silk – The 100% silk thread is made in a variety of colors and weights, it has a characteristic brightness that can enhance any look, it is strong and elastic and it is perfect to sew silk and wool.
  • Nylon – This is a very resistant and invisible thread, it is mainly made in two colors: transparent and smoke, and it is great for light fabrics.
  • Metallic – Metallic threads are bright colors, if you have decided to use them, keep in mind you have to take the necessary cautions with your sewing machines as these threads tend to accumulate static electricity.

“Although there are many different types of threads, it is important to only wear those of the highest quality, as this will ensure resistant seams”, added Salomon Juan Marcos Villarreal about this topic.

Maternity Dress

Maternity Dress

History of Maternity Dress

Throughout most of history, all over the world, women’s attire has of necessity been designed to adapt to the needs of pregnancy and breast feeding, which were likely to take up a large percentage of women’s lives between puberty and menopause. Before the industrial revolution, the making of fabric and clothing was labor-intensive enough to preclude the making of garments exclusive to pregnancy.

Thus, in Western Europe since medieval times, regular dress of all classes has been easily adapted for pregnancy. Laced bodices, frequently involving center panels to cover expanding waistlines, were prevalent. Petticoats, separate or integral with bodices, were tied at both sides, equally adaptable. Women appeared not to mind the rising hemline in front that resulted from the use of a normal wardrobe during pregnancy.

Some women did contrive garments specifically for pregnancy, as a surviving set of eighteenth-century quilted garments in the collection at Colonial Williamsburg attests, in which a waistcoat expands over the belly to cover the gap in the jacket front. Possibly this sort of individualized contrivance occurred more often, at least among members of the upper class who could afford it, than surviving examples can document.

In the 1980s, styles for working pregnant women also emerged as a category of fashion, as garment makers, and would be mothers, struggled to find styles apt for women in the workplace.

The 1990s saw an end to the customary attempt to conceal pregnancy. The emphasis on fit, athletic bodies, and the culture’s comfort with revealing the human form, have led to adopting clinging maternity styles in place of centuries of draping and concealment, and even bare midriff shirts are worn by pregnant women.

Feminism and a body conscious culture have taken maternity fashion in new directions commented the president of Grupo Denim Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal.

Fabric Correctly Can Create Fabulous Designs

Fabric

Using Fabric Correctly Can Create Fabulous Designs

Here are some fabric facts to consider.

Although it may seem intuitive, there is a certain amount of planning that goes into matching the right material with a pattern.

Not only must the right material be chosen for construction of the garment, but there are other details that must be taken into account in order to produce a beautiful garment that you would be proud to wear.

Once the material has been identified, then knowing how to correctly cut and sew the material takes into account:

  • What sewing machine to use
  • What settings on the sewing machine work best
  • Which is the best sewing machine foot to use
  • What type of thread to use
  • How to lay the material out on the pattern for cutting (yes, this does make a difference)
  • What size hand sewing needles to use for any hand stitching that must be done
  • What type of markers to use
  • What type of supplies and equipment will be needed, such as pins, shears, scissors, stabilizers or an iron
  • What type of seam works best
  • What type of hem is best for the garment
  • How should the seam be finished, should it be by using a zig zag stitch or by using a serger
  • Whether bias tape or bindings are needed
  • If the garment needs interfacing what weight of interfacing will work best
  • If the garment requires a lining, what type and weight of lining material will work best
  • What type of closure will work best-zipper, buttons or snaps

All of these factors must be considered to produce the best finished garment.

“Taking the need to plan how to best use your material seriously, can result in a genuine feeling of both pleasure and accomplishment and a garment that you will be proud to show off and to wear for a long, long time” commented the president of Grupo Denim, Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal.

Price your product

Price your product

Ways to price your product

Ask people to pay too much for your product or service and they will stop buying; ask too little and your profit margin slides or customers assume your product is poor quality. An optimum price factors in all your costs and maximises your margins while remaining attractive to customers.

 Here’s how to set it.

Know the market. You need to find out how much customers will pay, as well as how much competitors charge. You can then decide whether to match or beat them. 

Choose the best pricing technique. Cost-plus pricing involves adding a “mark-up” percentage to costs, which will vary between products, businesses and sectors. Value-based pricing is determined by how much value your customers attach to your product. Decide which approach is most suitable for your products before making a calculation.

Work out your costs. Include all direct costs, including money spent developing a product or service. Then calculate your variable costs (for materials, packaging and so on); the more you make or sell, the higher these will be. 

Consider cost-plus pricing. You will need to add margin (mark up) to your breakeven. This is usually expressed as a percentage of breakeven. Industry norms, experience or market knowledge will help you decide mark-up. If the price looks too high, trim your costs and reduce the price accordingly.Set a value-based price. You’ll need to know your market well to set a value-based price.

Think about other influences on price. How will charging VAT have an impact on price? Can you keep margins modest on some products in order to achieve higher margin sales on others? You might need to calculate different prices price for different territories, markets or sales you make online. Selling at odd values rather than whole pounds is common.

“No matter what type of product you sell, the price you charge your customers or clients will have a direct effect on the success of your business” added Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of Grupo Denim.

New Era For Denim Industry

New Era For Denim Industry

New Era For Denim Industry Starts: Robots Are In Actıon

Operating in denim industry since many years, Vav Technology has been able to determine the health and safety deficit in the sector and accordingly, launched 2 new unique robots that imitate human hands in perfect standards.

Until a denim material reaches to its usage stage, its becoming exposed to many different processes like sandblasting, different washing systems etc. These operations  provide denim a more added value by the effects given.

In the past, sandblasting operations have been performed by the denim workers however because of its cancerogenic and negative effects on human health, it has been banned.

Alternating to it, the denim producers have been started ‘’hand scraping’’ to get natural worn effects. Even though the results have been successful, the process has been too costly and hard.

Nowadays, these processes are being able to performed by VAV laser machines with less labor cost, less energy consumption, less chemicals and zero health problems. Laser system is able to give natural effects to denim just like its been made by human hand.

However, laser completely is not enough getting the most advanced effects. The PP (Potassium Permanganate) application is also needed after the laser process to get more natural, distinct, lighter and intended results.

As the PP application is a very hazardous process on human health and unfortunately is still getting used in denim industry, Vav Technology is developed an  innovative solution to prevent insecure and dangerous effects of scraping and PP processes, and  created two intelligent robots that imitate human hand by cloning the best worker by Clone Mac 10AX AN recording method.

With ERASER MD48 SCRAPING ROBOT, Vav Technology has been able to take the scraping tool from human hand and transplant it to robotic arms. By this way, the standardization in scraping process is achieved as well as labor mistakes, health problems, production capacity have been increased (App. 4000 trousers a day).

DA VINCI OB48 SPRAYING ROBOT, brings solution to dangerous chemical processes for lighting denim with potassium permanganate . With this robotic system, the robotic arms copy the human movement and spray the water based chemicals on denim in a standardized amount each time. By this way, none of the workers are exposed to dangerous effects of the chemical. High productivity with very fast activity (App.6000 pants a day).

Both Eraser MD48 and Da Vinci OB48 robots have been created with Vav’s 8 years long R&D studies and long experience in the industry.

“With all the machines and robots created, the company is mainly aiming to provide health and environment friendly production solutions as well as to reach high quality and high productivity  with less labor and production cost, less energy consumption, and less labor mistake” added Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of Grupo Denim.

Fashion Trends

Ladies Fashion Trends

Ladies Fashion Trends

Trends in fashion often reflect the state of the world think shorter hemlines in the Roaring Twenties and the grunge look in the rebellious ’90s. Trends in recent years have been all about going back to the basics. Streamlined silhouettes with a nod to classics of times past are coming into fashion again, and are applicable to every woman’s closet. From must have apparel to on-trend colors, it’s easy to update your wardrobe with modern trends.

Leopard Print

Many women are afraid of wearing leopard, but this print is extremely on trend. A leopard scarf or a pair of shoes would be the perfect accessory to an otherwise neutral outfit. Leopard can be paired with warm colors  greens, browns, and even dark reds would look lovely with it.

Midi Skirts

Best suited for taller ladies, the midi skirt is a longer, calf length skirt that is best paired with heels for some height. Midi skirts come in a variety of silhouettes from a line, to pleated, to pencil. Younger ladies might want to try pairing the midi skirt with a cropped sweater, whereas more mature ladies might want to pair it with tucked in shirts and v neck cashmere sweaters to balance out the longer skirt length.

Muted Color

One color outfits, so named because of their monochrome palette on top and bottom, as well as outerwear and accessory pieces, streamline the silhouette and take a lot of the guesswork out of having to match colors in an outfit.

Green

Dark, mossy green is universally flattering to all women, and is particularly beautiful made in velvet. For older women, a dark green turtleneck or cashmere sweater would be the perfect piece for a cold winter’s night, while for younger women, a skater dress in green velvet would be a lovely evening party piece. Clothes in this color can be paired with tartan plaid for some festive cheer.

“It’s easier than ever to incorporate some trendy pieces into your closet no matter what your age or tastes. Contemporary trends have been less about particular pieces and more about patterns, colors, and fabrics” commented the president of Grupo Denim Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal.

Income from Cotton

Income from cotton

Less pesticide, more income from cotton

With “cotton ecosystem analysis”, Asian farmers learn to study pests close up in their fields and use insecticides only when necessary.

Cotton is king in Asia. China, India and Pakistan alone account for almost 60% of the global cotton harvest and more than 70% of the world’s cotton growers. Cotton in Asia is predominantly a crop of the poor, providing the main source of income of more than 100 million low-income, small scale farmers. 

But cotton production often involves intensive use of pesticides, mainly insecticides, which can pose a serious hazard to the health of farmers and consumers, agro-biodiversity, drinking water and ecosystems.

In Asia, the use of synthetic pesticides many of them classed as “highly hazardous” and banned in developed countries increased exponentially with the introduction of improved cotton varieties and hybrids, which are higher yielding but also more susceptible to pests than traditional cultivars.

As pests developed resistance, pesticides become less effective and farmers began applying them with greater frequency, aggravating the economic, environmental and social costs. In the late 1990s, insecticides accounted in some Asian countries for an estimated 40% of the cost of cotton production, which not only limited profitability but forced many farmers to take out ruinous, high-interest loans to pay for them.

Alternative strategies. But there is also good news. Phytosanitary standards in international trade, growing consumer awareness, and concern over the degradation of natural resources have all prompted a growing number of cotton producing countries in Asia to limit pesticide use and adopt alternative strategies for protecting those valuable cotton plants against pests.

Cotton processing provides jobs for millions of factory workers, many of them women. Little wonder, therefore, that cotton production is an important part of rural development strategies in many Asian countries, added Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, presidente de Grupo Denim.

What Colors Look Good on Me?

Colors look good

What Colors Look Good on Me?

For help in choosing the most flattering clothes that will bring out your natural beauty, it helps if you first ask yourself which colors really complement your skin tone, hair, and eyes. By determining what hues are the most flattering, you can fashion a wardrobe that makes you look fantastic every day.

Color Seasons

If you are interested in a more detailed analysis than deciding if your coloring is better suited for warm or cool colors, you may want to have a color season analysis done.

Winter

If you are a winter, your skin color might be pale, olive or dark; skin undertones are typically blue or rosy pink. Hair and eye color often contrast the skin. Black, dark or white blonde hair are typical winter hair colors.

Winters look great in deep, rich colors such as black, deep blue, crimson and dark pink. Icy pastels like silver, sky blue, light sunny yellow and pink can also look wonderful. Bright white is another good color for many winters since this stark neutral works well with hair and eye color contrast.

Spring

If you are a spring, your skin undertones may be gold-yellow. Skin coloring is typically in cream or peach shades, with hair color ranging from auburn shades to golden and strawberry blondes. Springs often have freckles and lighter eye colors.

Springs look best in soft, rich colors. Warm colors such as peach, golden yellow, copper, coral and brown shades with warm tones are good choices. Bright aqua, green and royal blue can also look stunning. Rather than bright white, springs can opt for a rich, creamy ivory as a wardrobe staple.

Autumn

If you are an autumn, your undertones are typically golden, with skin coloring in shades like peach, beige and golden brown. Red, red-brown, dark blonde and rich brown or brown-black hair shades are common for this season. Autumns also tend to have darker eye colors.

Autumns look wonderful in rich neutrals, earth-toned and spicy colors. Consider olive, forest or mossy greens, orange shades, grays, dark browns, burgundy, purples and camel and rich beige colors.

Summer

If you are a summer, skin undertones might be pale blue or pale pink. Skin might be pale or pink-toned. Light eyes and blonde or light to medium brunette hair are common for summers.

Summers look excellent in soft shades and muted colors with cool undertones (or light colored neutrals). Some of the best colors for summers include dusty or rose pink, pale yellow, lavender or pale mauve and powder blue. A soft white can also work for this season.

When you wear colors that really work with your skin tone instead of against it, you will look your best and you’ll feel good about the way you look, said Salomón Juan Marcos Villarreal, president of Grupo Denim.