How to sell fashions online: Interview with Circle Creations
Cranking out a boring 9-5 and wanting to figure out how to get your start in the fashion business? You don’t have to leave the safety of your core job. Start by leveraging the free time that you have now to build up sales, customers, and figure out your niche in the marketplace.
We interviewed Loralee Harding about her path to independence and the opening of her online stores, Circle Creations. Loralee grew up making things and attended Lane Community College where she took classes on fashion design and pattern making.
Loralee has made over 3,000 sales just on Etsy and also sells through her own website. However, she didn’t’ arrive at those numbers overnight. Her path to owning her business was not straight forward:
Walking down the streets of Portland, I saw someone selling Hemp necklaces back in 1995, I knew I needed to learn how to make those, so I asked the street vendor to show me how to macrame. From there, I started making jewelry for friends, and eventually selling them at my local Eugene Saturday Market. Macrame moved into crochet, and crochet moved into sewing, and sewing morphed into being a fashion designer.
While making items for friends and selling on the weekends at her local market, Loralee was able to get a feeling for what the market wanted. Over time she tested, iterated, and modified her offerings into what it is today.
Try to find your own nitch in the industry and something that sets you apart. Always listen to what people like about your product. What people want is not always what you want to design.
When asked about her creative process, she explained:
First I start with a basic set of body measurements. Then I draw a base pattern for all sizes male and female. From my base patterns, I’m able to design and be creative off of my base patterns. First making one sample, then making 4-5 samples (one for each size). It is not always something I get right the very first time, and it is an organic process how the design turns out in the end.
Her process is organic, as are her materials. Loralee’s niche is her commitment to using hemp, natural, and organic fiber materials in the clothing she produces. She’s partnered with other micro-entrepreneurs in her hometown of Eugene Oregon and also worked to get distribution in a handful of eco boutiques.
She also researched and found festivals on the West Coast that catered to her ideal customer. Her goals are to continually make quality products, sustain her customer base, and remain dedicated to working with hemp and other natural fibers.
You can find Loralee’s creation at her website and on Etsy:
Are you thinking about launching your own fashion brand? Would you like a critical review or a writeup about your designs or business? Contact us – we love to work with rising talent!