THE LEARNING PHASE NEVER ENDS
Last week, I talked about the origins of the belt and the birth of D’clic during my years as
an architecture student and athlete. After searching without success for a “real” belt to
replace the seatbelts I was wearing, it occurred to me I would need to create it myself.
I like to call this beginning the learning phase because that is exactly what it was –
everything I did initially amounted to me having to learn how to do it. This is precisely
when I knew I was an entrepreneur in the truest sense of the word. I completed every
necessary task on the way to creating D’clic naturally and without any regard as to
whether I was capable of doing it or not. I just did it.
The belt was D’clic’s first product, the foundation of the brand, and I started small by
creating two samples that stayed true to the actual seatbelt concept – one in black and one
in grey. The learning curve is enormous in fashion. I had to learn about manufacturing,
fabric and pattern making, investing, crowd funding, and negotiating overseas with
people whose English skills were ten times worse than my own! Eventually, and after
much support from my community, I received the first order of 50 belts. That’s the
moment when my brand became real. Words cannot describe the excitement I felt
holding my creation, now tangible, in my hands.
Since that day, the learning has continued. One of the most important lessons I learned
early on, that still sticks with me today, is that of control. This concept of control is a
perfect example of where my artist soul and business mind can be at odds with one
another. After the initial production of belts, the artist in me envisioned so many more
color options, which I created and released. However, the businessman in me realized
that the ability of a company to lay a solid foundation, and continually evolve at a steady
pace is crucial for its success. This meant I could not churn out every product idea I had,
as soon as I had it. Keeping myself reigned in and controlled is a constant practice, and
luckily I was born with an ability to be patient no matter the circumstances. Timing is
Remaining loyal to the origins of D’clic and the seatbelt concept that started it all, gives
me the opportunity to expand on the original belt. The new line, which will be released
later this year, takes our original belt concept to yet another level, and I cannot wait to
unveil the new designs!