We’re not a start-up! We are slow fashion!
Nowadays it’s time to create start-ups anywhere… sure?
We recently made public a small project called Sofía Luzón. For more than a year we’ve been working hard in private and without a release date in our mind. Just working: step after step we’ve moved forward until the D-Day arrived.
When we talk with the people about our project the first thing we need to explain is that we’re not a start-up. In fact we don’t want to be one. It’s not about picking a word or another. It’s the way we work.
What makes us slow fashion instead?
While a start-up is focused in growing fast and to be scalable, we’re focused in small production keeping our feet in the ground.
One of the most important things for us is to put our soul in the lingerie we do. All our pieces are handmade, but not overseas where for sure we’d have them cheaper. We create them in Barcelona with our own hands and being involved in all processes.
Another important reason, as Jon Westenberg explains perfectly in this article, is that sometimes ideas are discarded because they can’t reach a million users or money immediately. That’s just crazy! We are the owners of our time, the path we want to follow and the most important thing: how we want to grow.
At the beginning of the article we explained how we didn’t have any release date for our Arkhé collection. In fact, when we had all the photos from the shooting with the model and the photographer, we didn’t know if we’d be uploading them immediately or not. We got the photos and we started to create all the content for the web, the shop and the lookbook. And we waited a couple of days until we were sure it was what we wanted. So, we published the lookbook. But not the shop!
Slow but confident
If we were a start-up we would be focused in reaching a lot of users to transform them into clients as fast as we can and in the biggest possible amount.
When you’re looking for investors they take part of your company to be sure that you’re managing it properly… in their opinion. We prefer to ask for neutral and selfless advice. And if we fail, we fix it, and we try again, no pressure nor disagreements.
We do not want users per se. We want that when people pay attention to us is because we fill their needs. We don’t need to grow fast to prove anything to any investor. We grow slowly but confident that what we deliver is not just lingerie, it’s a story about how we made it and how much we care. So, long story short, we want the customer to be part of our vision, our passion.
Hard but so satisfactory
In a start-up there is satisfaction: the CEO and the founders are happy when they reach a specific number of users, a new investor…
In a small fashion business like ours the satisfaction is the day to day. It’s also to design and create for people but also for ourselves. We enjoy selecting the fabrics or the garments, the packaging or even the marketing channels we’ll use.
A year ago we didn’t have any idea about suppliers, tax management or logistics. We’ve started without much money but with plenty of time. And by using that time today we can say we have solid suppliers with the highest quality standards. And we still have a lot more to learn!
The difference is that we gained a lot of knowledge because no one was telling us what to do in each moment. We’re discovering it hardly but it’s so satisfactory!
Grow is for the future
We just started! For us the future is tomorrow.
Maybe in the future we’ll need to grow, we must. But when that time comes we’ll decide how to proceed. And for sure it will be without sacrificing part of the company or asking for a big loan. We decide how we will grow.
This is our new adventure and we hope to keep learning day after day.