Monday, May 31, 2010

The F Word

Dear Readers,

Lest you think we are neglecting you, I thought I would do a quick check in. The problem is, we have been waiting. Waiting for our website to be done, our logo to be finalized and all of the vendors to approve our paperwork. So we have nothing amazingly exciting to report- and that is just not great blogging material. However, now that you are reading you may as well continue, yes?

As I was enjoying my aunt's 60th birthday / surprise brunch this weekend, I was realizing how tiring it is to talk about the business sometimes( yes already, don't judge me :/ ) I used to have a hard time when family members asked me about our band also. I don't know what it is- maybe you feel like everyone is eager to be proud of you and you are like - well yeah, i mean in Minnesota we played to the piano player that went on before us, his wife, the other band and one poor journalist who heard us online, so we are basically huge.
Not to say that we didn't have some marginally successful nights in our own hometown, but for the most part we ended up just doing it for fun- because we are all friends, and we liked making music.

It's different this time. If we don't have some degree of success I might be seriously dissapointed. I might feel like a failure, and I might be embarrassed. I don't want to be talking to my family a year from now about how we are struggling just to keep our heads above water ( especially since I now owe them my first born - thanks mom and dad and stepdad and stepmom!)

The point is, I'm in a mental preparation phase. I need to be ready to work my hardest, perservere, and if absolutely necessary, be ready to let everything go and chalk it up to a great life experience. I'm just saying - hello Failure, I'm aware of you - if you come anywhere near me I'll punch you in the face- and if you are stronger than me, at least I went down with dignity.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Inspriration: An Unexpected Theme of Pets + Ladies

Hi everyone!

It's been a while since we'd done an inspiration post (mostly because people are so camera shy...nudge, nudge) but that doesn't mean we haven't been inspired! Here are two sites you should all check out:

Introducing All Mighty, an adorable online shop run by two sisters out of an old Victorian house in NY. The shop is named after their Boston Terrier, Mighty, and the look of the entire site is just over-the-top adorable in honor of his cuddly cuteness. All Mighty is a far cry from what Carly and I are putting together over here at FFC Headquarters in terms of the theme, but it's inspiring to me nonetheless because it's two ladies running an awesome online store out of their house--and they make it look like so much fun! I also think the site is uniquely approachable and really captures their friendly point of view without being precious in a bad way. Good design and good ideas, executed well--it's lots of fun! Go see for yourself!

Next up is, which is actually where I learned about All Mighty! is an all-things-pet-and-animal site that is also run by two ladies in SF (my friend Sarah and her co-founder Sonia). Pawesome offers a huge range of info on everything from pet advice, to information about adoption to hilarious YouTube videos. They even do pet profiles, such as this one of my cat Eleanor. I encourage all of you to check out Pawesome, it's a great resource and really fun.

Have fun surfing the net!


Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Let's say it again together - Live and learn!

Woweeeee, could we have ever imagined that we would be in the middle of so many things at once? I really didn't expect to learn this many life lessons in a few short months. If I had a nickel for every time I, or someone in my vicinity has said "live and learn" lately, ...well, you know. To put it vaguely, while we have been regaling you with tales of trade shows and mythical dresses, there is a lot more going on behind the scenes than one might think. Namely, we have been desperately trying to get our store BUILT. Everything that you will see when we launch the store, from our logo all the way down to the poses of the models will have more thought behind it than you, the customer (er hopefully, OK, not you Dad :p, but hopefully *some* of you ) will ever be privy to. And let us assure you, it has not been easy.

Without going into all of the gory details , we have had to learn a lot about the way we work with each other and the way we work with other people. We can't accomplish every facet of this business on our own , so naturally we have had to hire other people to work with us. How do you communicate effectively to someone, the store that already exists inside of your head? The customer you have already met in your daydreams? And that you would rather have your store look like the fake bathroom in the lovely BellJar boutique than anything else? See even you don't know what we are talking about (well some of you probably do, and you guys rule).

With that in mind, I think the main thing we've learned is to be clear and as specific as possible about your initial ideas with web designers and developers. Even if a detail seems too tiny to mention, mention it, and early on. You won't be sorry. You will save time, money, and headaches. If you don't have a vision yet - sit down and brainstorm. Gather images you like, observe the competition, focus on helping to create something extraordinary - and know that sometimes that means letting go, too.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Good Morning, Spring!

Hi everyone!

I'm sitting in the internet cafe at the D&A showroom waiting a few minutes for Carly to arrive. It's on the 13th floor of the Starrett Lehigh building, everything is white and bright, the windows are flooded with sunshine and the flowers on the table are screaming spring!

This is the third and final day of trade show shopping for us, and we are surprisingly not completely pooped. The last couple days have been so productive, we've seen so many beautiful things, and are feeling really good about the orders we want to place. We're especially excited about a long sleeved Dolce Vita dress (as soon as we started we both started cooing over it--it was kinda embarrassing but I think everyone was too busy to notice). There are also some really great accessories we plan to order, which is a relief because we were starting to feel like nothing amazing was going to stand out to us.

Another great surprise is how nice everyone is here! Maybe we're just more comfortable with ourselves in this new situation, but I swear, people in NY are not keeping up their reputation for being aggressive at all. We feel very grateful for everyone's patience and kindness towards us as we learn the ropes.

That's it for now, it's time to shop!