NEW YORK — As many small and medium-sized apparel manufacturers made their way through the aisles at the Jacob K. Javits Center last week during the International Fashion Fabric Exhibition, many faced a recurring hurdle for their businesses: Vendors who had minimum order requirements for more fabric than they needed.

Before designers began flipping through swatches of fabric from Far Eastern, domestic and European mills, most asked about policies on minimums. Many Asian mills, which included exhibitors from China, Hong Kong, Japan and 43 from Taiwan, had appealing prices in the $1-per-yard to $3-per-yard range, but often asked for minimums of 1,000 yards or higher per color and style.

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