What is your product(s)?
Opaline Hue offers technical clothing for all day wear. Each piece is constructed from high quality wool blends for all the performance strengths anyone could need from their clothing in daily life.
The designs are made to flatter and style across many occasions while leaving room for movement and comfort. My supply chain is intentionally designed for kindness towards people and the environment. My goal is to make your hands down favorite sweater that you can’t imagine your life without. And consequently the content and construct is made so you won’t have to!
Where were you with your idea or business before joining Factory45?
Funny story, when I joined Factory45, I was visiting LA to meet with a development company to kick off my business. I has just finished a particularly rough and intimidating meeting with them and remember sitting at a coffee shop seriously contemplating my options.
Factory45 applications has just opened but hadn’t applied because the quote I got for development was even more than the price of Factory45. I really felt like I could succeed in this business I had an idea (and sketches and an instagram account) for, but this development meeting frankly had me feeling really small. I had some money for development and probably a little production.
At that point, I had probably spent a year eating up any free education I could get- podcasts, books, videos and I was so ready to start! I knew vaguely where to start but didn’t have the network or the understanding to ensure I wasn’t being taken advantage of. Even when I got the quote from this company I was feeling uneasy about the price.
Ultimately, I decided to apply to Factory45 because I felt it was the kind of quality education I needed for my business. I know I have what it takes and though any business is a risk, I want to take wise risks. I felt Factory45 would be a choice that would decrease risk and increase stability for my business.
How did joining Factory45 help you?
Having contacts for sourcing fabric was the first really helpful part of Factory45. I really wanted to do this on my own but I didn’t have the network to do so before Factory45. Going through the module brought me to a supplier I adore and fabric choices even better than I had been looking for.
I also gained direction and confidence around marketing. I think without Factory45 this would have been a huge weakness for me. I learned what I should be focusing my energy on based on today’s best practices. I can try and keep trying with confidence knowing that if something isn’t working, it’s not because it’s a waste but rather because marketing takes consistency over time. I’m less likely to give up quickly in my marketing efforts because of Factory45, and I don’t have to tell you what kind of impact that will have long term!
In your opinion, what is the most valuable thing about Factory45?
Shannon is the best part of Factory45. I have taken two other online courses (self paced) and, though I think the content in Factory45 is much better anyways, the access and personal relationship to Shannon is what stands out. Shannon’s personality is the kind you need behind you. She is warm and encouraging, but gives you really straight answers. Though I’d like to think I’m confident, I am also very unsure, prone to insecurity and freak out about my business at a moments notice. In Shannon I found a mentor who could say YES ME TOO and then offer personal encouragement, and practical business support. That empathy and expertise combo equipped me. Working with Shannon helped me craft this resiliency in my confidence, and this grit has continued to impact my business post Factory45.
What were some big or small milestones that you hit after going through Factory45?
I launched my pre-sale this year. I’ll be fully open in the Fall with a few more styles added to the collection. The most noteworthy milestone is setting up a supply chain I’m confident in. The relationships I’ve built with suppliers and contractors makes this such a joy for me. Having something that is running in a healthy way is such an accomplishment!
Please describe your business after Factory45.
I love my business! I see my business as a dynamic work of art that I get to put into the world. It’s a complex system with moving pieces and the fun is in figuring out how to make it blossom. I love paying people for their work. There’s such a beauty in having the money to honor someone for their craft and building relationships that way. What Factory45 gave me was the education, resources, confidence and support to get me to this place- a place I love and am wildly proud of.