5 Lessons I Learned Starting a Fashion Brand During the Pandemic
This past year has brought us all many challenges, and I believe that every challenge has its purpose. While I wish this pandemic never existed, it has given me strength to focus on the growth that it’s brought and the lessons I’ve learned. I’m sure you’ll all be able to relate to these 5 lessons I’ve learned while starting my fashion brand during the pandemic.
1 // Pivot
As the saying goes, we plan, God laughs. That is definitely a phrase I hear in my head when planning anything nowadays. Instead of calling an unsuccessfully executed plan a failure, I call it pivoting. It helps me keep a positive mindset, and it’s much easier to get over. The year of 2020 is the year of the pivot! I’ve learned that if you can pivot with ease you’ll be just fine in this business—actually, any business. Having a backup strategy or readjustment plan is crucial. I’ve learned how to pivot on things from adjusting product launches, celebrating milestones, timeline changes and reallocating funds. Pivoting is a part of daily life right now.
2 // Community is key
Taking care of the community around you has an impact on your life more than you realize. When your community thrives, you reap the benefits. Donating time, money or highlighting local small businesses helps people keep their jobs and sustain their livelihoods. As a small business watching so many businesses fall around me I find it extremely important to support locals as much as possible. I continue to work on production in the city in order to push the business forward and support my local manufacturer. Local businesses are the backbone of the economy and are a huge part of what makes NYC so great.
3 // Use time wisely
Living in NYC, the original epicenter of the pandemic, the city has been mostly shut down. Time typically spent going out and socializing has dwindled, and we have been somewhat confined to our homes for the majority of 2020 and into 2021. Some of us have a lot more time on our hands, so it’s easy to waste it binge watching something on television or scrolling endlessly through social media. For others—I’m thinking of all the parents out there—time is even more scarce than usual, and it’s hard to get anything accomplished. Either way, winging it is not a sustainable strategy. This year, I’ve learned to be more disciplined and manage my time more wisely. Setting a routine and planning out daily goals, exercise, as well as a break time is key to making the most out of the time you have.
4 // Gratitude
As so many people have lost loved ones or fallen ill from the virus, it’s been more important than ever to cultivate gratitude. As I continue this entrepreneurial journey, I appreciate every day that I can work at something I love. No matter how small the task, I am grateful to celebrate every single success and milestone. I’d be lying if I said this past year has been all gratitude all the time. It has been hard and sometimes quite depressing, but I make a point to show appreciation for how far I have come. I may not have had a launch party like most brands when they come out to the world, but I look forward to inviting all the people that have made purchases and supported me out for a huge celebration when this pandemic is over to show my love and gratitude.
5 // Perseverance
I think going through this awful moment in time has made us realize what matters most in our lives. It’s a reminder that life is short, and also a reminder that we’re stronger and more resilient than we may feel. So many of us have experienced such crushing heartache this year, and yet, we’re still standing. Besides staying safe and positive, believing in myself has been key throughout this pandemic despite the many obstacles that have arisen. I look forward to what the future holds because if I can get through this I can get through anything. I know this because I was made in NYC.
My wish for all of you is to find growth and joy in these challenging times. Thank you for all the support!