Creative director and Founder of GBEMi
1. Why GBEMi? Tell us a little bit about this venture. Was there a specific moment that sparked its creation or was it always a buried dream within you?
GBEMi is a womenswear fashion brand focused on colourful fashion, particularly t-shirts and sweatshirts. It is characterized by a really fun vibe for young, fashion savvy girls. GBEMi is for the girls who are Queens, for the Queens who wear dreams. We believe in inspiring girls to live their best life.
2. I can imagine, there are probably times when it gets tough juggling GBEMi amongst other things? What practical things did you do to balance your time?
Well, I do juggle it with my day job. My advice would be use your weekends to their full potential, wake up early, get loads done in the morning. Also have a timetable and stick to it, even if you’re just working on your side project 1 hour a day, it makes a difference. Try not to waste any time on unnecessary things i.e watching Netflix. Utilise any free time you have to build your project.
Use your weekends to their full potential and try not to waste any time on unnecessary things ie. watching Netflix.
3. As best as you can, describe the best thing you did or decision you made in the past that helped you dream come to life now?
I think just making the decision to start selling clothing that was more wearable and commercial. When I started GBEMi the product was a lot more premium and niche but I discovered that the girls that liked the brand were younger so they were after colourful pieces that were more affordable. Making the decision to pivot my product to fit that clientele was a great decision because since doing that we have seen the most growth in sales.
4. Reflecting on your time as a student, what would you (as your current self) tell yourself then?
I would say do more internships with high street brands or young brands as this would have made me more knowledgeable about this market.
5. Tell us a little about the journey of bringing GBEMi to life. What did you learn in the process?
I entered a competition and won finance to fund my brand which was really the stepping stone in making it come to life, I had to source suppliers, factories, organise photoshoots so I learnt a lot. However I learnt that fashion requires a lot of capital, as finance is spent on samples and stock. It’s important to have a realistic financial plan to ensure you can keep the business going.
6. What tips would you give to students who are still pondering whether to implement that idea or start that new business?
I would say before you do, get lots of experience through work or internships and seek mentors and advice. So that when you start you are more likely to succeed with your idea. Don’t be in a rush, enjoy learning and educating yourself especially if you are thinking of starting a business that sells physical products. You will know when you are ready to start, you certainly won’t have all the answers at the beginning but at least give yourself enough education so you can confidently launch your idea.
NUGGET OF WISDOM: Don't be in a rush, enjoy learning and educating yourself!
"If you have an idea, you have to belief in yourself or no one else will." - Sarah Michelle Gellar
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Listen to #WEARYOURDREAMS podcast episodes where you can listen into Alice’s inspiring conversations with female millionaires, fashion girls, creative girls and girl bosses including the likes of Chrissy Rutherford (Senior Digital Editor at Harper’s Bazaar) and Sharmadean Reid (Creative Consultant/Stylist and Founder of WAH Nails London).