When we set out to start a company, we didn’t know what we were getting into. Like most projects, we were filled with lots of ideas and a healthy dose of optimism. We had no idea the difficult road ahead of us. However, despite challenges, it’s been a wonderful journey that, not to be too cheesy, has ultimately changed us as people, and blown away so many of the things we took for granted, or never really thought about at all.
I’m ahead of myself, let’s start at the beginning.
Melina and I both sew. A little. She had run a bonnet company with her mother, making cute hand-sewn bonnets that she sold in a few local stores. I had been sewing a few rompers for my new son out of my husband’s dress shirts. Putting our two concepts together, we started a children’s clothing line made from upcycled designer men’s dress shirts.
When we began, we envisioned a company like TOMS Shoes- with a great social mission that also turned a profit. We wanted to design well-made children’s clothing, with an upcycling twist, and have Nordstroms call and say “Congratulations, we love you, here’s a million dollars, and we’ll help you get launched.”
Hey, a girl can dream, right?
We worked on patterns, logos, taglines, pricing, social media marketing and sourcing dress shirts. We worked on figuring out manufacturing. We looked at business models, wrote business plans, and started to learn the difference between sewing pieces for a craft fair, and scaling up to manufacturing.
We also learned about the dark side of textile waste and manufacturing, as well as human nature and the fickle shopping experience.
The process has been daunting and overwhelming, but way too inspiring to quit.
Follow us as we share our journey, telling where we’ve been, what we’ve learned and what we plan to do next.
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