I can't believe it's been 2 years since I launched my business! As a fashion designer and founder of a small fashion brand, people often ask questions on how I manage being a solopreneur in the fashion industry.
In full transparency, wearing all of the hats while running a small business can be very challenging and it can get in the way of the designing and creating process. But until you reach the point where you can hire your first employee, this will be part of your day to day schedule. So if you're planning to start your own fashion brand, learning about the business side of things is just as important as learning how to become fashion designer.
With all that being said, I've created a YouTube video where I answer the top 3 questions I get asked as a small fashion brand owner. This is my way of giving you virtual access to my work space and design studio.
Here is a summary of the questions and answers discussed in the video:
What inspired you to start a small fashion brand?
- At 4’ 11” shopping for clothes was never fun for me…up until I was around 20 or 21, I was able to get away with shopping from the girls section. But by then I just wanted to go to the mall and buy clothes that were styled a bit more grown-up. Needless to say that after a few hours at the mall, I usually walked out empty handed and disappointed.
- When I was 22 years old, I got my first job working in an office environment. This is when I realized that the best solution was to start making my own clothes. Now I can help other women find the right fit for their body proportions.
When and how did you learn how to sew?
- I’ve been around sewing most of my life, most of the women in my immediate family know how to sew.
- My mom put together a sewing kit for me when I was around 7 years old and taught me how to cut and hand sew outfits for my barbies.
- I attended a vocational high school and graduated with a diploma in Clothing & Arts Design (this took my sewing and patternmaking skills to the next level).
Why do you make your clothes using the made-to-order process instead of manufacturing them?
- Sustainability is important (I learned so much about the fashion industry's impact on our environment while in college by writing every essay and speech around this topic) so my goal is to do what I can to help the environment. I try to use upcycled materials as often as possible and when I go fabric shopping, I look for remnants and/or end of bolt pieces that would otherwise sit in a warehouse collecting dust until somebody decides they are a waste of space.
- I want to be able to serve the petite community on a personal level—with a made-to-order process I can offer semi-customizable options that allow length adjustments for a better fit.
Stay fabulous my friends!