Tell us a bit about your brand and how it came about… Also, what inspired you to start your business?
I started Hopeless just under 2 years ago, a short time after I finished my TAFE course. I have been sewing my own clothes since a young age, and from pretty soon after I finished school I knew I wanted to have my own business.
The dream for the brand really just came to me in a flash late one night. I scribbled it down on a piece of paper beside my bed, and in the morning I looked at it again and just knew exactly what everything was going to like, and how I was going to get started. The vision and spirit of the brand has pretty much stayed the same since that night.
I knew that handmade lingerie was a niche market, which suited me, as I never want to do enormous mass production, and I also love vintage styling, so it was really a marriage of my love for unique and special things with a vintage look.
I have been selling for just over 1 and a half years, and my expectations have been completely blown out of the water in that time! When I look back, it has all happened so fast, and I really am so thrilled about it all!
What is the best part about what you do and is there something you dislike doing?
I love working from home and being my own boss, and all the creative people I have come in touch with as a result has been wonderful. That is probably the best thing.
At the moment I work 7 days a week, and I must admit it is really hard to stay on top of everything. I definitely need to get better at organizing the business and accounts side of things. My strengths lie with the creative side so it is always a struggle with the less creative parts of running a business.
Is Hopeless and Hopelessly Devoted hobbies or full time business?
I do still work on weekends to make sure I have enough money for rent and bills, but I do Hopeless and Hopelessly Devoted 5 days a week and most nights.
Do you have any advice for other sellers that may be thinking of doing their craft full time?
Make sure you really love it. Because it will take up every second of your time and take over almost all parts of your life! Especially when you work from home, it is very hard to escape from it, and I pretty much never switch off.
It is a huge amount of work, but it is so much more fulfilling and the rewards mean so much more when you have worked so hard to get somewhere.
If you have one tip that you could give fellow online sellers to improve their exposure or sales, what would it be?
Just get involved! There are so many opportunities to get in touch with people online, and you need to take advantage of every avenue. You will learn as you go which work for you and which don’t. For some Facebook will generate the most traffic and sales, for others Twitter, for others blogging. There is no one recipe that will work for everyone. It depends on your business, your personality and strengths.
For me, having amazing photos has been a huge key in getting my work out there. That is obviously a lot to do with my product though too – I need that kind of package to sell what I am selling.
If you are selling supplies, or smaller items that might not need modeling, you can easily get amazing pictures with a small digital camera and a sunny afternoon.
Where can we find you?
AUD Dollars: www.hopelesslingerie.bigcartel.com