What is your product(s)?
Mikumo is an independent slow fashion label that specializes in timeless, feminine apparel with Korean and Japanese style influences.
Where were you with your idea or business before joining Factory45?
I began thinking about creating my own line of sustainable/ethical products in Fall 2020 and had started researching the process of launching my own brand. After exhausting all of the free content I was able to find on Google, I found myself wanting more guidance and structure, especially for things like supplier connections and crowdfunding. I found Factory45, was impressed with the alumni, joined a few of the free workshops, and signed up that winter to start in May 2021.
How did joining Factory45 help you?
Being a part of Factory45 was very helpful in providing a sense of community and external motivation to stay on track. I felt like I was not alone on this journey, which reduced my anxieties about taking the ‘road less traveled.’ There’s always someone there to help you work through a problem, whether it’s a mentor or someone else in the program.
In your opinion, what is the most valuable thing about Factory45?
For me, the most valuable part of Factory45 is hands-down the community. The content of the course itself (particularly the supplier database, email templates, and crowdfunding guide) is very helpful when getting started out, but the community is the gift that continues giving long after you’ve made your way to launch. I personally love the Facebook page we have, where we ask questions, share wins, and help each other out. As a group self-selected for conscientiousness, it’s full of kind and friendly people who lift each other up!
What were some big or small milestones that you hit after going through Factory45?
I was able to run a successful Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign, reaching our goal of $15k in the first 37 hours and raising a total of over $24k.
Please describe your business after Factory45.
I now have my own online store with a steadily expanding line of products and growing number of customers. Additionally, suppliers and manufacturers take me much more seriously now, which has given me more options and tools to improve and streamline my supply chain. In early 2023, Mikumo will be undergoing a partial rebranding and moving half of our production to India!