TBT: When I interviewed Andrea, designer and owner of Tutudumonde.com she gave me a great piece of advice to pass on!
Andrea’s Top Business Tip
“Be very clear in how you want your business/brand to look and stick to it. In order to be good at something I think you have to follow your passion but stay true to your vision, it’s easy to get distracted.”
I was thrilled with the transparency Andrea exhibited when I interviewed her on her design process and on her tips and experience producing overseas.
READ THE REST OF HER INTERVIEW AS FEATURED IN ISSUE 2 OF TFBM MAGAZINE ON THE BLOG. http://tfbm.weebly.com/blog/an-interview-with-the-designer-and-owner-of-tutudumonde
I am so lucky to work with some amazing designers and for Issue 4 of TFBM Magazine I have worked with 4 of them to bring you some amazing deals all under $15! The magazine has live links you can click for each deal. These deals are limited so get over to page 8 of issue 4 to get yours today!
Don’t miss future hot deals like this! Sign up for my email list and pick the send me more info on TFBM Magazine and Indie Designer Deals option! http://eepurl.com/v3uBD
Have you been following my series on production over on the website blog?
A new post is up! This one covers how to work closest to the dollar when you purchase fabric up front. How do you manage sales? What do you do with excess fabric? And more!
DON’T MISS A POST OR INDUSTRY TIP. SIGN UP FOR MY EMAIL LIST HERE: http://eepurl.com/v3uBD
I know I have been sort of stealth lately. I do have some great things going on behind the scenes that I want to share:
1. I have a private workshop going on right now to help businesses increase their Facebook Stats so more people see their posts. Once this test group is done I will roll it out to everyone!
2. The holiday issue of TFBM Mag is well underway! I have photo shoots every weekend for the next 3 week…s and several photographers sending in editorials. Stay tuned for an even more amazing issue than issue 1!
3. I have been super blessed with a crazy busy Halloween Season selling almost 200 costumes. So I have been a sewing banshee and busy hiring sewing help. Plus I am working on my holiday collection. Hence falling behind on blog posts.
BUT FOR TODAY
I want to direct you to issue 1 f TFBM Mag
. Fall is upon us which means apple picking and baking treats. This year try something a bit more modern than a normal pie. Throw a pie pop party!
In the magazine I style the pie pop party with a vintage country feel but it could be done equally well as a chic party in a NY Loft. Go crazy with your own styling and create a conversation centerpiece with Pie Pops as your main guest! Get your inspiration plus a link to a book full of pie pop recipes here: http://www.calameo.com/read/002669782063702bacba4
TIP: Don’t bake? Buy your pie pops on etsy.com and have them shipped!
Curious about my path to becoming a wholesaler and how it’s turned me into an angry designer? Read my latest blog post.
“Is this satin?” I heard the woman in line in front of me ask. The cashier took her time talking to her coworker in Vietnamese before looking up and saying, “Oh yes, satin, very nice, $3 a yard.” “Can you wash it, or is it dry clean only”, the lady asked? The cashier looked at her confused.
I reached in and felt the fabric. “Its polyester with a heat applied felt overlay. You can wash and dry polyester but the felt may not stand up so probably wash gentle line dry and iron face down.”
I’m not sure if she was more annoyed with me for destroying her great deal on satin today story, or more excited that she could wash the fabric. “I really like it”, she said. “But it’s not really polyester is it?” I was feeling a bit punchy today so I swung into annoying know it all mode and said, “Yes most inexpensive materials that sort of soft like satin are.” Now I could go on to tell you how many of your favorite materials really are polyester or a polyester blend and how polyester has come a long way since 1970 but I will leave that for another post.
Instead, for starters, let me introduce myself and why I have decided to start this blog. I am Katie. I design children’s clothing. I started my line when I was 3 months pregnant with no more than an old sewing machine and a refusal to return to corporate America. I started off with an Etsy shop just designing for fun, mostly blankets and burp cloths and later outerwear. A Japan retailer discovered my outerwear line thorough Etsy and asked if I wholesale. I said sure and they gave me an order for 60 faux fur ponchos the next day. I eventually moved into clothing and at the beginning of 2011 was approached by a showroom in LA’s California Market Center. She wanted to represent my line in the wholesale arena. (More on that another time too.) Fast forward 8 months later and my line is in over 30 retailers in the US, Japan, and Saudi Arabia. My Etsy sales went from 120 to 660 sales in that time too.
Needless to say this has been a rollercoaster of a ride. Thrilling, exciting, fast, with lots of ups and downs. And that’s why I am starting this blog. I have had to learn everything on my own, the hard way often, and while I have had some lucky breaks I learned that they are just that. If you don’t dive head first into those breaks with a will to succeed and the drive to learn you will not make it. Nobody will hold your hand and most won’t share a single piece of advice with you (not helpful ones anyway). This is a tight knit, tight lipped industry, it moves fast and you have to keep up. So many times I would have killed for a good mentor.
And that’s what this blog is. A fashion business mentorship of sorts. An open book on how I started my business, and what it takes to run it from wholesale to retail: fabric sourcing, sales, finances, customer service, marketing, season planning, line sheets, photoshoots, runway shows and beyond! I am not claiming to be an expert;I learn something new every day. But I have experience to share with you, and a decent track record of success. So I invite you to be my students. I will share with you all I know and I invite you to ask questions along the way.
Welcome to My Fashion Business Mentor.