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This blog provides insight of article master with grid functionality (created through color & size characteristics) and Fashion Bill of Materials. The fashion BOM has unique features of grid control in it. The objective is to highlight the fashion brand’s business purpose served by these functionalities.

We discussed the set up required to create an article in previous 2 blogs. Please find the link below for these.

Part 1: Set up of Organization Elements – Set up behind Article creation in SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business (Part 1 of a 3 parts blog)

Part 2: Set up variant class & assignment to material group - https://blogs.sap.com/2023/05/11/set-up-behind-article-creation-in-sap-s-4hana-fashion-vertical-busi...

Core Solution

There are 2 topics to discuss. The first topic is grid functionality of article master and second topic is Fashion BOM. An article is created through transaction MM41 and can be maintained at mass level via MM46. A fashion BOM can be created via standard BOM creation transaction CS01. However, all of these have unique features to serve business purposes. Let’s discuss these one by one.

Grid functionality in Article Master:

Business Requirement: An article often represented as a matrix created through color & size characteristics. Here the size is in X-axis and color is in Y-axis. Merchandisers mention color & size wise purchase price to contract manufacturer (Vendor) in a purchase order sheet. Furthermore, the quantity distribution of the purchase order also mentioned in this matrix (or grid is in simple term). These details provided along with tech-pack which contains more technical details of an article.

Solution: SAP S/4HANA fashion & Vertical Business uses article creation method of SAP IS retail via transaction MM41. The article creation is very similar to material creation through MM01. There are similarities between material creation and article creation as far as sales view, purchase view, MRP view, work scheduling view, plant/store location view, warehouse management view, quality management view, accounting view & costing views are concerned. Furthermore, SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical business also uses the grid functionality of SAP IS Retail.

Please note: SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business is an Industry Specific solution evolved from SAP ECC Fashion Management Solution. SAP ECC Fashion Management Solution is a best breed of SAP IS Retail & SAP IS Apparel & Footwear Solution (AFS). Thus, we can wonder why SAP did not leverage the concept of material grid of SAP IS AFS. The key reason could be that color & size wise sales price determination is very complex data maintenance, the variant wise inventory cost calls for split valuation and huge data maintenance for purchase price too. Thus, it is easy to handle material codes with variant characteristics assigned to it.

Step 1: We can create an article through transaction MM41. The selection of material group determines the variant class.

Image 1: Determination of variant class by selecting Material Group

Step 2: We can choose color & size values from the variant characters appeared on the next screen.

Image 2: Choosing color values

Image 3: Choosing Size values

Step 3: The display of grid and generation of grid via clicking ‘Generate grid’ button.

Image 4: Grid in Article Master

There are several more steps to perform in MM41 to complete the article creation. Once, saving the article creation, SAP creates material codes for the generic article as well as the material codes for all possible combination of the grid along with variant characteristics associated with it. The generic article code is ‘01’ and variant material code has the generic material number in the reference material field of table MARA. The beauty of SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business is that it appends MARA with new fields like ‘COLOR’, ‘SIZE1’ & ‘SIZE2’. The color values stored in the ‘COLOR’ field and size values stored in the ‘SIZE1’ field. The ‘SIZE2’ field indicates the secondary sizes if any. This means it is very easy to call the correct variant material code based on a size & color combination. This newly added feature helps immediate display of grid during purchase order creation or sales order creation. Furthermore, the pricing record maintenance has become the standard one for both purchasing & sales price. The new fields of MAAR table shown as follows.

Image 5: COLOR, SIZE1, SIZE2 fields of MARA Table

Fashion Bill of Material (BOM)

Business Requirement: A garment is majorly made of fabric(s). Depending on the style of the article there are body fabrics for front & back parts of the garment, interlining fabric for jackets, rib fabric for collar & sleeve bands. Furthermore, the fabric comes with the shade characteristics which in turn becomes color of the garment. Thus, it is evident that color of a garment is derived characteristics from its main raw material fabric. However, the size parameter is an operationally added characteristics of garments. The cutting operation of garment manufacturing generates or rather we can say adheres to the size of the garments. Based on the size range, there are accessories components like zip or chain or button varies. This also happens for label or tagging components. The care tag or hang tag must contain the correct color & size details. The impact of size comes down to single polythene or single box packing material too. The smaller size goes into small box and the box size increases as the garment size increase. However, packing materials like carton or hanger will not vary from variant to variant.

Solution: SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business caters the impact of color & size to its component selection and color/size wise consumption quantity variation. The details of this feature is shown as follows.

Step 1: Create BOM for the generic article and plant through transaction CS01. Please assign all components. The fabric should be created with article concept with 1 parameter of color/shade. However, we need different article codes for different type of fabric like body fabric/rib fabric/interlining etc. The sewing thread will be standard material. However, the accessories like zip/chain/button should be article with single parameter size. This applies for single packing box/polythene. But the carton or hanger will be standard material.

Image 6: Fashion BOM creation first step via CS01

Please note article should be created via MM41 transaction code and standard materials should be created via MM01 transaction code.

Step 2: Click on a component (fabric for example) and click on ‘Grid View’ icon on tool bar. On the next screen assign size/color wise component quantity and click on ‘Accept’ button on tool bar.

Image 7: Grid view of Fashion BOM

I assigned blue color of fabric to all sizes of blue color of the garment. It can be done either by direct mention of quantity in respective field and removing from quantities form the unnecessary fields or the ‘Cut/copy/paste’ option can be sued. The same concept applies for other colors & sizes. While saving this Fashion BOM, SAP will create BOM for all variants of the Garment’s generic article with correct assignment of all the variant codes of the component or the standard material. Furthermore, if we need to maintain/change the BOM, we need to do it for Generic Article Level only. We should not allow BOM maintenance at variant level. It will create inconsistency.


The SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business serves the business requirement of managing supply chain for articles very well by the effective design of article master & BOM. Furthermore, there are planned innovations in SAP S/4HANA roadmap for Fashion & Vertical Business. However, the solution of SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business is very wide and thorough. Please have look into the other features of SAP S/4HANA Fashion & Vertical Business through the below links.

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