Yes, you can start a fashion line even if you have no idea how to get started. Janelle Lucero and Annie Stewart are proof of that as founders of Petite Moss, an adorable children’s clothing company based in Seattle, Washington.
Neither has a background in fashion design. Annie was a second-grade teacher while Janelle studied hospitality management and pursued a career as a flight attendant and doula. But the two shared in the struggle of finding clothing for their children that didn’t have graphics, obnoxious colors or rough fabrics. So they decided to fix the problem themselves with Petite Moss.
“It was kind of good for us that we didn’t know anything about anything because right at the beginning. We were asking everyone we knew and finding those who did know, “ Janelle told me. “We feel really, really proud of ourselves.”
2 Things They Wish They Knew
- Be Patient
Janelle and Annie started working on Petite Moss two years ago, and the brand just launched its first line last week. (I’ll tell you this is actually quite fast from a fashion perspective, but two years can still feel very long.)
“We didn’t always feel very patient about it and I wish I could go back and tell us two years ago that there is now rush. It’s gonna take time and when you’re done with it, you’ll be so much happier you didn’t rush through,” Janelle said. “Be patient with yourself, be patient with the people you’re working with, be patient with the timeframe. Two years really goes by so fast.”
They shared that even the manufacturer was pushing them to approve of fabrics more quickly, even though they didn’t feel right about the options they were given.
“It gets really frustrating and really hard,” Annie said. “But now that we have launched and everything is so perfect and we have really paid close attention to detail…we’re so happy we did that.”
- Partnerships can be a good idea.
Janelle and Annie were told it would be best if they weren’t partners, but the friends decided to still start Petite Moss together regardless and it actually worked to their advantage. They both share that they’ve pushed each other and challenged one another in a healthy way to make the products better.
“I don’t think it’s the right answer for everyone,” Janelle said. “We needed each other in this phase of life. “
3 Things For Those Wanting to Start a Fashion Line
- Know your idea. Start with an idea and be flexible to know it could change. The ladies started with one idea – a lounge set – and starting with that propelled them and gave direction.
- Reach out to your network. You never know who could help you. Be vocal and ask for help.
“If there’s something that feels overwhelming to you, find someone that can help you,” Janelle said. “There’s such a big network of entrepreneurial women and also men who are willing to be helpful as you build something that’s your own.”
- Research. Get busy researching your idea. One place to start: Go out there, buy clothing samples, see what you love and don’t love and how you could make it your own. Janelle and Annie did this as newcomers to the fashion market but Taylor even did this as a professional working for Tommy Hilfiger. There’s value in research and you can’t do it enough.
Final Advice For Starting Your Business
“There’s no perfect time so just do it today. Start making lists of your resources, likes and dislikes and what you’d like to change to make it better.” Annie said. “Take it one day at a time.”
You can get 10% off at Petite Moss by using the code EFFYA10 at checkout!
Janelle Lucero on Instagram
Annie Stewart on Instagram