About Devanét UK
From humble beginnings like most entrepreneurs, decisions were taken that would set a course to be different from most of the suppliers of buckles and belts by becoming a true UK manufacturer from the creative design to a finished custom product. In some ways, we were forced into it, by suppliers who were only interested in big ticket numbers to sustain their massive overheads. Our research found that there were more people in our markets around the world, who wanted their own brand, their own product range and wanted to work with a company that was prepared to support them with small volumes, high quality, using only top quality materials.
We found out the hard way, that most buckle suppliers wanted us to order hundreds if not thousands of one item and pay exorbitant tooling costs to get a buckle component. Initially we had to be content, establishing a foothold in a very competitive market seemingly dominated by low priced imports from Asia by sourcing what we could. It soon became apparent we had to do something about it to satisfy what our customers wanted more cost effectively and more importantly be able to control the quality. So little by little, we purchased the machines to enable us to have more control over what we made.
The customers, were broken down into two distinct categories, there was those companies who sold big volumes and wanted the cheapest price no matter what. Then there were those companies who felt that quality not quantity was more important for their image and having a quality brand – it was these customers we knew we wanted and it was on this basis Devanét applied its strategic plan.
Today, we have invested over £100,000 in machines and technology software and make buckles, jewellery and components made from solid brass or aluminium, we CNC mill components on our own precision machinery, this applies to all the elements that make up buckles and findings. We make and braze buckle bars, prongs, metal keepers and other pieces, many of them branded with a customers logo to make what we refer to as the raw product. The product is then tumbled in our own tumbling system for several stages to deliver a top end pre-plated product – here we still use some final machine polishing so that the components are evenly finished to a high lustre.
The final stage, the plating or lacquering, it is this final process that has been the most challenging as there are many options to provide customers. With the help and support of a number of suppliers we are now also able to plate products and control the outcome of the final finish. The finishes we offer range from brass plating, rhodium, silver, 24 carat gold, cobalt hard gold, nickel, anodised aluminium and nuances that some customers require to our jewellery standard. We now offer powder coating, ceramics coating and flocking making us the only UK company to offer all these services under one roof.
The leather and webbing components, belts, bags and custom made gifts are somewhat different as the processes are well established and defined if you want to make a belt but very little expertise is available on how to make a buckle. We already had the design skills, so we acquired the support and help from specialists in fabricating and processing leather and webbing and over the past 5 years have purchased everything from die cutting to computerised pattern sewers to ensure we can produce a complementary quality range of products in both leather and webbing. Our latest investment is a custom made computerised edge stitching machine which has set us apart from many other manufacturers in the UK, complete repeatability and computerised indexing around corners completes the edge stitching of a belt in 40 seconds and everyone is the same high quality finish.
In 2016 we commenced the development of a range of buckles and blanks, webbing and gifts for the sublimation market, a first in the UK. Being able to design the whole product range and produce a complete bespoke buckle in 24 hours has given us, the ability to export our products worldwide to this niche market. Complemented by our own sublimation printing system we can offer customers full colour inserts or blanks custom cut to any shape or design and matched to their own gift range we can make for them. We can now produce our own boxes which can be sublimated, or custom made for specific pieces of jewellery. The project was completed in 2019.
In 2016 we introduced precision colour filling into the product range, and the implanting of Swarovski crystals by a vacuum technique. This has meant we can now offer customers coloured crests, logos, designs or create buckles with custom designs with Swarovski crystals.
More recently, making more use of our engraving capabilities, with lasers, and diamond drag machinery and investment of over £50,000 we can now make signage and a host of other custom products using solid surface materials, wood and acrylics to order for customers. This also includes the ability to make not only the buckle, piece of jewellery and belt but also the presentation box.
In latter part of 2016 we invested in a state of the art high speed Galvo laser so that we could engrave very fine detail onto metal and with exceptionally high speeds. The ability to engrave most metals in such detail has given Devanet the ability to offer customers one of the most comprehensive range of branding solutions for metal buckles and belts.
Our latest investments extend to our own inhouse plating facility offering low volume real silver, 24 carat gold, black chrome, nickel silver, rhodium, Other plating finishes are available subject to volume.
It was decided to add to our option for demands for coloured buckles and other metal hardware, so we have invested in a powder coating system, which enables us to coat, glass, stainless steel, wood and plastics as well as our buckles and end tips. Now we have a comprehensive mix of plating and powder coating.
It seems, we have only just tipped the surface, but we continue to invest every year to improve our ability to produce UK made products, and, being supported by some of the top worldwide brands, fashion designers, the corporate sector, famous sports personalities and a growing number of like minded entrepreneurs gives us the confidence and determination to offer British manufacturing to anyone who wants to have “Made in England” or “Made in Britain” stamped on the product.
Our 2020 plans are the introduction of retail products which are exclusively made by Devanet at our Congleton factories and this website is dedicated to our belts, jewellery, accessories and products for your pet and home as well as offering a bespoke service to create your own designer gift.
Rest assured new investments planned in what we offer are being scheduled for July, in the meantime have a browse and see what we do and if there is something you would like to us make for you, give us a call or email.
David Webster BA, MSc
Devanet (UK) Ltd