At the start of my Journey to Molly in 2018, I was straggling the fence about whether or not I would like my brand to remain exclusively one-of-one custom pieces or to mass produce and share these unique and intricate designs with a larger, still limited, number of sole lovers. It was one hell of a ride, but I figure it is worth sharing for those of us that have embarked on our personal expansion journeys and are in need of a little motivation.
At some point in 2019, I caved and expended close to $10,000 on single prototype samples of two pairs- something I regret doing until this day, with my first mass production trial at an overseas factory. I say regret, because with this amount of money, one would think I’d have the liberty to have my designs reproduced with various colour options and remodelled until perfection… WRONG! A little over a month after signing the contract, I was told that a particular clause in the contract meant that I could only have as many colour changes during the design process, not that I would be provided these colour options as finished prototypes. I was hugely disappointed and it was a very trying time for me. I’m not gonna lie. I broke down so many times over the mere idea that I had literally flushed out $10,000 for nothing short of failed communications and extremely delayed timelines.
Granted, they did execute my complex designs to the best of their ability, however, the quality was giving absolutely subpar– A total rip off. As if this wasn’t enough, after months of reproducing designs that took me only a few weeks to create, the company correspondents went completely radio silent upon completion of both projects, leaving me with no idea as to what my next move would be in terms of mass production.
As disappointing and extremely unprofessional as that experience was, it worked out in my divine favour because exactly a year later I was introduced to my current manufacturing partner who is an absolute ANGEL!
She definitely came into my life as if God had handed me the answers on a gold platter. Her energy was unmatched, communication was top notch, manufacturing quality was explicitly more luxurious than the first company and I felt valued every step of the way. Not to mention that I was given the liberty to remodel the samples as many times as I needed in as many colours as I wanted. In the end, I received 5 prototype samples before approving my first design, The GR1, for handcrafted mass production.
This lady (and her establishment, of course), is the reason for this collection coming alive in the manner and prestige that it is. Even after approving the first design, she never fails to go out of her way and come up with better, higher quality alternatives during production to ensure that I get only the best for my debut collection. I am certain now, that my initial disappointment was definitely a much needed step to securing a life-long mutually respectable manufacturing partner.
I know there are a number of you who reach out to me occasionally to figure out how I’ve done it and what path to take, but honestly, there really isn’t a sure way. It’s YOUR story and you have a right to make mistakes and fall flat on your face as many times as you need to thrive. I share my journey not only to reflect on my experiences as I continue to grow, but in hopes that my transparency will continue to inspire others to keep trying and keep failing- without failure, you will never know the taste of success. Do the research, ask A LOT of questions, and go with your intuition. No one knows your designs and vision like you do. If you think someone is not reciprocating your energy, respecting your vision or is diminishing your value, then by all means, do yourself the honour of re-evaluating the situation and determine if it is working out in your favour or against your mission. One things for sure, redirection should never be a hindering factor. Instead, think of it as an opportunity to explore new territories and expand your knowledge.
As always, it’s peace and love to my readers and supporters. It’s hard out here, but if you love what you do with all your heart, then it’s worth doing well.
Until next time,