When kath is blogging

Any independent fashion designers or fresh graduates out there?

Posted in Fashion by Katharine on June 11, 2010

After a 5-weeks trip in Europ with my family, stomping across the Netherlands, Italy , Switzerland and France… I’m now back home in Hong Kong. and after such a long break away from home, I felt motivated to get back on track with my career.

Honestly, I had been very lazy with work. I have never tried hard to apply for job, instead I always thought I could sew up some samples and start my own line. Which I think is still doable, but I had been really lazy with it. You know… sometimes when you are working alone without someone else’s deadline, you start to wonder why the rush and why all the hard work. Then everything seems to be meaningless.

Anyway, that was a month back then. Now I want to get back on track. So I’m starting to cut and sew tomorrow. and I’m really wondering if there are any independent designers or fresh design graduates struggling to start their own line. I’d really love to make your acquaintance, no matter where you are living on earth. I just want to know someone who is going through the same, and perhaps share some experience.

Please drop me a line, as long as this post exists.

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9 Responses

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  1. Carolina said, on January 6, 2011 at 6:38 pm

    Hola Katharine,
    I am in love with your blog… My name is Carolina , I am from Colombia, I have been linving in Dublin for the past 14 months, and before that… Miami, London, Glasgow.. ahhhhh… My husband and I move a lot, and we love to travel… and We are planning to move again… and Hong Kong is in our list…. But this time I want to settle down, and get back on track on my career.. My first degree is on Physiotherapy and my second degree is on Accesory Design.. Nothing in common, but that is another story..jajajjajaja I make handmade purses and bags.. I am trying to set up a web site, but it has been a nightmare, but I am trying not to give up, http://www.reallyrubiano.com but then I read this post , and although you wrote it, seven months ago . I am going through the same situation… I work from home, but it’s really difficult to keep a schedule,

    I first read an article on your blog about where to buy fabrics in Hong Kong, I am going for a few days in two weeks, and I want to buy fabrics, purse frames, etc etc… But I kept on reading your blog and althought you wrote this post seven months ago, I am going throgh the same situation… I work from home, but as you mentioned, it’s really difficult when you are on your own… but there is another disadvantage for me, the competition…. It’s so difficult to compete with the prices from the big shops, trying to make something handmade is very pricey, and it difficult to find people how appreciate the time that you spend on making something, and that they will be paying much more that somenthing that has been made on a machine and in huge quantities…
    But I am trying to be positive and keep on sewing and trying to complete what I started a long time ago..
    I hope you could tell me , How you are doing with your sewing … and Thanks again for your helpful post..
    CAROLINA…

    • Katharine said, on January 7, 2011 at 12:51 pm

      Hola! Thanks a lot for the message . I’m really glad to hear your story, Carolina. That is amazing that you get the chance to live in so many different places 🙂 I love traveling too, and I’m trying my best to save up money so that I can go somewhere.

      I have to say that setting up your own brand is very hard. and i have the outmost respect for anyone who is not giving up their dream. The hard thing about fashion is that it’s so hard to find a factory to produce your design in small quantity. on top of that, there are so many details can go wrong… after you spent so much time and effort in your creation, you have to compete with the price tag in the department stores, and not a lot of store would stock up your items as you’re not well known yet….

      Since I wrote this post 7months ago, I did finished sewing a few items. and there are two dresses that I really love. but i haven’t put it up for sale as I feel that it isn’t the right time yet.

      In August, I started working as an assistant designer at a start-up designer company. It’s a very small operation, so I get to see everything a start-up designer have to do when setting up your own brand. I’m so grateful that I got this job, as I’m really learning a lot and i have a better idea of what obstacles I’ll face. I’m trying to get more experience, do more research at this moment. HOWEVER, I’m really going to start my own line properly this year. and I hope what I’ve sewn before may be launched together with my 2011 collections. I’ll get some proper photo shoot, and set up a website. Oh god, I looked into the whole website design thing before, gosh it seems complicated……

      I’m planning to create 3 small collections this year as an independent designer. Build up a better portfolio, make some connection. and then hopefully I can set up a real business in the following year.

      Being a designer on your own really takes a lot of courage and endurance. we have to always remember what we our dreams are, what we’re working hard for , and the most important part is to believe in ourselves 🙂

      are you selling on Etsy?

  2. Asha said, on August 28, 2011 at 2:08 am

    Hi. Came across your site while looking for sewing supplies in Hong Kong. Its a very thorough and informative post. I had an idea (not orignal) but no experience of this field. So was wondering if you could provide me some advice. Thanks.

    • Katharine said, on August 28, 2011 at 2:40 am

      Sure 🙂 If it’s something I know, I’m more than happy to help or give ou some suggestion.
      You may leave me a message here, or email me at kath916@hotmail.com

  3. Kathos said, on November 3, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    HI Katherine,I’m Kathos and I’m in Hong Kong and I cannot agree with you more,finding a position as a designer in HK is not a pleasing experience and hell yes I’d like to share with you more,so if you’re up to it,we can share emails,mine is kathosdaven@hotmail.com,I’d really love to hear from you.,as soon as possible.
    Have a nice day!
    Kathos

  4. Dorothy said, on August 28, 2012 at 1:28 am

    Hey, as your post is still up here, I figured the couldn’t hurt to leave a comment 🙂
    I’m Dorothy, trying to start my own line too. But being a one man band company kind of sucks, and I didn’t grow up here. How’s your’s going? I got to your site by googling sewing machines. Trying to decide whether to get a domestic serger that can multitask or industrial, which is faster but doesn’t cover everything I need. So frustrated cuz back in school we just hopped on whatever was in the sewing room and sewed all kinds of crazy thicknesses on the same thing.
    Anyhow, I am definitely bookmarking your haberdashery list. Thanks a bunch for that post!

    • Katharine said, on August 28, 2012 at 1:36 am

      Hi Dorothy, thanks for leaving me a message! one man show does sucks, as you really lack the money and resources to do anything. Currently I’m still holding on to my day time job. But really hoping to start something by the end of this year. It’s just so much risk to consider and think through before jumping into it. I’m still learning so much at my current job, which is a very new fashion brand. I really enjoyed working here as I do see what problem a start up fashion company can face 🙂 If you are not sure how you’ll use your serger, I’d suggest to get domestic one, since it gets to do more stuff. and when when it comes the time that you really need an industrial, your company must be well on track and have the money and space for it 🙂 for now, I pretty much just line everything I create, even I do have a domestic serger. It just feels nicer!

  5. Stephanie said, on March 17, 2013 at 9:12 pm

    hello Kathrine! i came across your blog like, last year i think? searching for some sources where I can buy fabric in HK. it helps! thanks! actually I’m in study design students, and in searching for some work chance in HK so here I’m back to your blog again lol! i thought maybe we’re on the same boat?

    i will graduate, hopefully next year and planning going back to HK to continue my career there (home call haha). I’m so blind about it, tho. was it hard for foreign graduate to apply job there? afaik, you’re Parson’s graduate? 😀

    • Katharine said, on March 18, 2013 at 8:59 pm

      Hi Stephanie, it means a lot to me that you come back to my blog again 🙂 I guess it is not more difficult for foreign graduates to get a job in HK. I think it’s rather like……harder for foreign graduate to settle down on the job here. The reason is, as you know, design scene isn’t as thriving as some other countries. So the majority of the company aren’t doing anything as exciting as the opportunity you might get overseas. There are definitely some companies that you’d like to work for here in HK, but the chances are very limited.

      Yes I am a Parsons’ graduate 🙂


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