Designers at the start of their careers go into the workplace equipped with many great ideas, and a little experience. Whether they integrate into commercial companies or open their own brand, the gap between ideas and reality is expensive. Why? Because of the uncertainty.
Early in my days as a designer, I was called to the boss’s office. I spinelessly sat down and with unquestioned authority, he asked in frustration: “Why don’t you design me more hits, more best sellers?”
He did not mean, heaven forbid, to send me into a singing career, but asked himself for the best of the best. Products that will be sold quickly and easily without going from the beginning season to the end of the season with blood and sweat, but with no yield or profit.
A more experienced and confident designer herself would have found a witty and educated answer. But I? That shared the design bench with Dalia Kaposa, who was born a genius designer even before she studied fashion design, I saw it as a glorious declaration of professional failure.
A long time later, both the designer and management teams together came involved in this philosophical issue: Is it possible to design a commercial garment in a premeditated fashion? Is it possible to know in advance if a model will be loved and desirable as it is? In the look, in the cut, in the price? Can I become a hit machine like Ed Sheeran or is this something that happens in hindsight? How does a hit know it’s a hit?
Years have passed since then, dozens of dresses have passed under our hands, and we still can not say with certainty which design will be nice to our bank accounts.
Something which knows more about predictability is the voting platform that allows people to respond, offer, disqualify, or elevate models which we pitch. The models that start out as an illustration, continues to serve as a pre-order and then finally arrives at the site and the shops. This week we brought up the dresses designed by the students from the Shankar Fashion Department for an early sale.
We measured your votes for the students’ dresses, checked which models you had purchased at the early auction, and no doubt found the answer to the issue we had dealt with many years ago: does a hit know if its a hit? — YES! And who makes a hit a hit? YOU, the customers! So let’s get to know the talented illustrators and share them: their love? Any suggestions for improvement? Because if you do not say how we know?