Case study

Sara Gabriel Achieves 60% Increase in Production Planning Efficiency with Katana

Sara Gabriel makes hand-made custom bridal accessories from veils to hair-pieces. Every SG piece marries together the traditional elements of bridal design and the free-thinking approach to fashion, creating a timeless piece, but one that allows brides to express themselves.

We love the added bonus of being able to manage our shop floor with Katana and that the inventory availability is hooked right in - having the shop floor know what they can/can't make on a given day is amazing, and replaces our previous "system" of creating/manipulating spreadsheets.
Headshot of Sara Varel
Sara Varela, Founder and Designer at Sara Gabriel

Company Profile

Sara Gabriel is a couture and handmade bridal accessory designer based in Denver, Colorado. Sara launched Sara Gabriel in July 2000 from her apartment and now has grown into a company producing over 10,000 custom units each year and is one of the most sought-after and recognizable brands in the bridal fashion industry. Each item is created completely by hand from start to finish and designed bespoke according to each bride’s wishes.

Seamstress working with pearl tree


Sara’s brides were dressed to the nines, and it was time to get the business management to the same standards. Key challenges Sara Gabriel identified:

  1. Forecasting inventory needs;
  2. Shop-floor management; and
  3. Managing the business in spreadsheets and lots of guesswork.

We are made to order and never want a material stock out. An important aspect was shop floor management and how it works together with the inventory supply. Now having the shop floor know what they can or can’t make on a given day is amazing, and replaces our previous “system” of creating and manipulating spreadsheets.”

Why Katana

Sara Gabriel set out to solve these challenges and tried a few other solutions as well. But why did they choose Katana over others?

Katana is built from the ground up for small make-to-order manufacturers like me. We produce over 10,000 custom units each year and make them one at a time. Katana doesn’t try to also serve “the big guys” who are producing hundreds of thousands of units all at once. All other industry-standard software we looked at was aimed at traditional manufacturers and didn’t fit our needs.

Seamstress working with lace strip

How Katana Helped

Sara Gabriel reported having optimized many aspects of their manufacturing management from production planning to communicating with team members. Main areas of improvement:

  1. Improved inventory control by more than 100%;
  2. Optimized production planning and scheduling by 80%; and
  3. And have managed to increase the efficiency of their day-to-day operations by at least 80%.

Katana knows in real-time if we have enough stock to make the orders that are due to ship soon AND when we need to order more materials to have them in time for orders that are coming due in the future. In addition, Katana is not “too big” for us like a lot of the other solutions we looked at which are designed for traditional mass-production manufacturers. Katana is the only solution we found that is made FOR the small, make-to-order manufacturer.

Katana is a cloud-based software designed specifically for small and mid-sized manufacturers. The scalable SaaS platform caters to manufacturing companies requiring a robust and effective production planning, scheduling, and inventory control system to manage their production. Katana supports both make-to-order and make-to-stock workflows and lets you save your bill-of-materials and makes automatic inventory adjustments, calculates operations costs, and assigns raw inventory, subassemblies, and finished goods to orders as soon as they’re generated.


Sara Gabriel Veiling







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