I’ve always loved all things fashion: books, magazines, movies, shows, people wearing beautiful clothes...yep, that’s me!
I get it from my mom, she is the original fashionista in the family. I can walk into a store and within the first ten minutes pick a wardrobe for an entire year for myself or a complete stranger I just met, no problem!
After my son was born I spent the first two years of his life raising him with no nanny or outside help. I couldn't do much besides watch him and keep him from danger, and of course feeding, bathing, and putting him to sleep. Sound familiar? And I always thought to myself, if I only could do what I want in my life, what would it be? Fashion design, no brainer for me, it is a fashion design! And there I was on my way to becoming a fashion designer!
My entire school experience felt like a bootcamp to me. I was surviving, we were all just surviving, staying up through the night to turn your assignment in on time or else. Deadline after deadline, eighty hours of work a week. That was my very first taste of the industry.
Not only I did I feel completely burnt out by my last semester, when time came to design my own portfolio, but that’s when I completely freaked out. I had no idea where to start my collection and where to look for any inspiration if there were any out there. “I am not a designer,’ - I told myself. “Love of shopping doesn’t make me a designer, and I quit.” - I announced to my friends and family “put a fork in me, I’m done”.
A light bulb went off in my head, when I heard my best friend say, - “design what you wear”. So I did, and I got an A on my portfolio and successfully graduated with a diploma in fashion design.
Two years later, I founded my own fashion brand and was repeatedly told that the only way to become successful was to find a showroom that would represent my brand to the stores, and that showrooms like racks full of your clothes because that was exactly what buyers liked to see.
For two years I did nothing else besides creating tons of new designs, and driving back and forth to my sample maker in downtown so she could sew more samples.
Not only did it take two years, it also took $85,000 out of my pocket.I knew it was time for me to start selling.
With very little money left I found a showroom. I had no idea that each showroom was different, and that the degree of your success FULLY depended on the way business was run there. Let me put it this way, my showroom owner was not the most goal oriented person. She kept welcoming new brands and letting them go on a regular basis.
A year later I ended up with zero money in my pocket, tons of debt on my credit cards from traveling the country with my showroom, tons of inventory that no one cared about and no strategy in place to help me sell.
“This is over”, - I thought to myself again, - “this is it”.
Panic and despair consumed me. For the next year I felt helpless and doomed. I lost my confidence as a designer and any motivation to design any more clothes. I was ready to stop and get a job somewhere else.
But my curiosity saved me. I started wondering whether I could represent my own brand and sell my own clothes. I learned about Instagram and Facebook, YouTube and SEO, and was on my way to becoming an influencer of my own brand.
Then Covid hit, and once again it felt like there was no way it was all going to work. I felt lost, in disbelief without a plan, like many other business owners did.
I was looking everywhere for answers about what to do next, within myself, talking to others, in books, and movies, motivational speeches, and coaches, until one day I came across a documentary that my son accidentally found on TV, and it was about well known brands.
It came to my surprise that it took 36 years for Starbucks to become the Starbucks that we all know today, and about 20 years for Ben and Jerry’s to be well known and gain a space on shelves of the most leading supermarkets, and that there is always an opportunity, you just need to go find it, if you care.
I did care. A lot. I finally viewed myself as a unique designer with unique ideas and unique clothes that can not be found anywhere else and realized that there are other women out there who need help and inspiration now more than ever, and I am here to spark their sense of creativity and personal style, which will unlock their true feminine strength, so they can conquer the world and live the life of their dreams today.
I continue successfully selling my clothes, even in the Covid environment and enriching women’s lives. Not only have I become an influencer of my own brand, but the world’s influences, and I am here to stay.
IMAGINE IF I QUIT?