Hello My Loves!I wanted to start sharing with you guys my steps and process on becoming a handbag designer and launching or better yet starting the process of launching a line with just 3 designs I have in total. My idea is launching a 5-bag line but we'll see how that goes!
First and foremost what I did was choose mentors and supporters, not financially, but morally, i seek advice from friends and family. I consult my every move with my dad and boyfriend and closest friends and they are all really amazing and really helpful. I have to thank Sotiria from www.RelaxMissy.com who, without knowing, gave me the push i needed to start this already! She provided me with the necessary steps to reach my goals and also introduced me to Mommy Millionaire. Steps A-Z on becoming an entrepreneur and making your product successful!
I started looking for manufacturers which is what I knew was going to take up most of my time for a while. Contacting a manufacturer, the RIGHT manufacturer, is hectic. I decided to go overseas because of the quality and price! Everyone knows the best things are manufactured overseas which have advance technology and are way ahead us here in the U.S.
I am now in contact with a manufacturer who is very interested in working with me. He took one look at my site and saw that I meant business. He said, " From your website,knowing that you are working on becoming a handbag designer ,I believe being an awesome and fabulous handbag designer is one of your wonderful dreams,sincerely wish your dream come true,and we are happy/honored and look forward to working with you." Now wouldn't that make you extremely happy? YES! I have been on a high ever since!
You have to provide them with dimensions and measurements, material, colors, details EVERYTHING when you're contacting manufacturers. You have to make sure they do OEM designs which stands for Original Equipment Manufacturer, basically YOUR very own design. The next step is to make sure to get a sample from them and ensure they can deliver and its as perfect as you want it to be.
THEN! is actually getting your name brand trademarked. Make sure the name you want is not taken. Do your research make sure its a name you want and love and a name that can bring definition to your product. Which is what I'm up to now. Finding a name that defines ME. If you're using a slogan make sure its catchy and defines your product. If you're doing a picture along with your trademark make sure you stand by it.
Any suggestions for my line? I am aiming for MargieB, as simple as ME! lol <-- there goes my slogan haha.
So last night I was up till weeeeee hours of the night chatting with Gary, rep for the manufacturing company I've been dealing with. He sent me pictures of samples for closures, leathers, studs, handles etc. I finally chose the correct closure along handle for my first handbag design.
i.e. (Click HERE for more info)
I love the fact that Gary keeps me informed of everything. We usually have a set time to contact each other when we're both up and available and able to just work. He keeps me updated on the sample making and sends me pictures to make sure its to my liking and my expectations. He takes into consideration the time difference, the fact that I am a new designer, and my goals and dreams <-- that alone is very important. So its like being able to monitor the making of your handbags first hand.
I am suppose to receive the first sample in 7 business days and the first sample will be made in black as most companies have set sampling colors that they use and give you the options. Black seemed a more neutral color to me and not to mention the fact that black will be one of the colors I'll be using on this bag so it works perfectly.
Just because I'm dealing with this one manufacturer doesn't mean my manufacturer-lurking time is done. I am reaching out to several different manufactures and getting samples from them to be able to do comparisons. Gives you options, looks, ideas and different perspectives. I am also in the process of meeting a designer who makes his very own bags and has his very own personal manufacturers who only make HIS designs. I wont disclose the name just yet, as i don't know it myself haha. I hope to learn the type of lining best used for the bags, different kinds of leather, metals, zippers, etc.
I received my bag. It is amazing. Check it out here. It is absolutely perfect and I wouldn't have it any other way. The next step for me is submitting my other 2 designs that will be part of the classics. My love for studs has grown but my love for pleads has grown even more. The pictures really don't do the bag any justice. The bag is so chic, rock n roll, trendy while maintaining a level of sophistication and elegance.
I am very pleased with this manufacturer. The leather is authentic, the gold is perfect and the details are just as I described in the detailed emails.
Stay tuned for Classic II and III :D
I am in the process of receiving 10 bags of MargieB.
I have sold 7 MargieB leather bags. Everyone that has bought one has received plenty of compliments and loves the bag! They say its sophisticated, comfortable, can be worn everyday and can be worn out to a nice elegant dinner. I love a bag thats versatile and i am so glad my design is.
Here are some customers posing with their MargieB Leather Treat HAPPY CUSTOMERS.
Right now I am waiting on 2 samples of 2 more designs. As soon as I have 5 designs I am creating a separate website specifically for the bags. I have to set up a photoshoot for finished product pictures of the bags and with models. I have a photographer, I have the models, I have ONE product i just need the other 4 and I'm ready to go. I am currently working on a marketing pitch to then hit the stores, buyers and get ready for tradeshows :).
I have not done an update for about 2 months now and I think its time for one. Life is all about trial and error. I'm at a place right now where it really IS about trial and error. I am soooooo upset and discouraged a little bit that I have to find a new manfucaturer, which i knew would happen eventually, as i was not 100 percent happy with this one. I was told from experience by numerous people that this was going to happen, i was going to find a manufacturer that i liked but chances are it would have to be after trying out a few manufacturers. They were limited with resources and always had an excuse to fulfill my requirements and bag details, that to me was unacceptable. Its almost as if i had to settle for their remarks and suggestions and that is not what i wanted. I am not changing my designs just because they cannot make it. So that has me a little bummed but its better now than later. Im staying positive.
Right now I am researching and reaching out to other manufacturers which are NOT located in China to see if i come across a better opportunity located elsewhere. I am looking in India and Vietman primarily but will keep my options opened for other countries like Colombia and Dominican Republic who do have leather manufacturing companies.
Last week i attended the St. Patricks event where I met numerous elite's from NYC. A very wise man shed some light on me and gave me some insight on how to do business and how to handle myself as the designer. I appreciate and cherish the time i spend speaking with him because it was all resourceful information that will only better me. Because of him I have taken of another project (aside the sketching of my official website to sell my bags, due to launch by this summer or early fall and also the photoshoot to start my press kit and professional pics of my bags) i am also working on incorporating myself. Rebecca Minkoff is LLC and so is Marc Jacobs. This is an essential part of starting your business for all liability related issues, anything such as write-off's and much more.
So there you have it. Thats where i stand. This little baby is literally my 2nd job!
Hello there, so it has been 6 months since my last update and last I left off i was telling you how i was researching other manufacturers. I did. Tried one and it failed yet again. Right now I am working with another one whose termination and details are soo perfect. Let's see how this one turns out. All my sampling for the collection is done. I have 7 designs and working on one last one which shall be the added bonus to the collection.
Ongoing struggle with manufactures, late night hours working to get this done while working a full time job and taking two classes. It is a lot of work but its soo worth it nonetheless.
I am receiving the shoulder bag by this thursday and so i am very excited to see the results.
I am also awaiting samples for 4 new designs. I cannot wait for those.
I am officially Incorporated. Simply Fabulouss, Inc :) feels awesome to say I own a company!
I am also officially done sketching my site which has been launched http://www.mymargieb.com/ visit and sign up for the newsletter for discounts! The site is not officially done. I have to fix a few things here and there but it is definitely functional and ready for stock to be sold!
There you have it. I am working on getting the launch done by Fashion week in February. Very excited!
THE END FOR NOW! :)
My Disclaimer :)
All my designs have been inspired by plenty of hand bag designers like Betsey Johnson, Rebecca Minkoff, Marc Jacobs, Foley + Corinna and more. Along with runway shows, street styles and magazine clippings, but are NOT replicas. I don't duplicate I can say I try to immitate but adding my very own touch. I take an idea I make it my own and try to make it better. This is a start for me and this particular bag (picture posted up top) I will give all inspiration to B.Makowsky and Rebecca Minkoff.
From the bottom of my heart.. thank you for those who have been keeping up to date and helping me out. Your support means a lot!
Thank you and stay tuned! ;)