The relationship between designers and stylists can almost be described as symbiotic: designers create garments. Designers need exposure to sell. Stylists need to pull items for shoots. Shoots can bring a lot of exposure to designers. In the middle of this beautiful relationship is a very essential legal (yes, legal) document: the pull letter. What is it? Is it necessary? What do I need to include in it? Keep reading and you’ll find your answers!
Of course, please take this as legal information and not legal advice. If you have any questions regarding pull letters or would like to get one drafted/reviewed, send us an email at email@example.com.
What is a pull letter?
A pull letter (or letter of responsibility) is a legal document that outlines, amongst other things, what the garments you are lending (or borrowing) will be used for, how long they’ll be borrowed for and who will take the responsibility if anything were to happen to them.
Why do I need one?
There are multiple reasons why you’d want to use a pull letter, the most obvious one being that you want to make sure your garments will be taken care of, and if not, that you will be reimbursed for any damages. If you are a stylist, you should assume that no designer will want to lend their creations without such a guarantee.
A letter of responsibility also allows you to maintain the control over how your garments are presented (by knowing what the theme of the shoot will be and putting it in writing).
What do I need to include in it?
The basics. Aside from the name and description of the parties, a complete list of the items that were borrowed is absolutely necessary. This list should be very detailed, which means you can include the size, the color, the sale price, model number if applicable, etc. As a designer, you might also want to develop the habit of taking pictures of the garments you lend to keep proof of their initial state.
Responsibility. The other element you need to include is a clause outlining who will be responsible for the garments as well as their use. Depending on the situation, this could be an event organizer, a publication, a photographer or a freelance stylist.
Payment. Taking down the borrower’s credit card number or asking for a deposit is a good way to ensure you, the designer, will be getting the garments back.
Credits. Lending your creations is a good way to gain visibility. Aside from protecting the state of your garments, you can use pull letters to ensure that you will be given credit wherever the leased clothes will be used and that you can use the end product to do some promotion on your social media platforms.
As surprising as it may seem, pull letters are legal documents and should be taken as seriously as any other business agreement. If you need some advice regarding pull letters, do not hesitate to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or click here to schedule a consultation.