What a year it has been. For those of you who are just joining us, the company started as a one-man show in 2011, but I/we didn’t really start taking regular orders until 2012. I drew a lot, making a few prototypes and a handful of sales.
Then, toward the end of 2012, we released the Kenway (now the Eagle). Our site exploded. We were inundated with orders, requests, followers, etc. It was way more than just one part-time helper and I could ever hope to handle. We kicked off 2013 with an indiegogo campaign, purchased high-end pattern software, and started rebuilding the entire foundation of the company.
I was a self-taught designer working out of my bedroom, but with a little help from co-workers and friends, I made Volante Design, Inc. The company now has Willow and me as its two owners, and by the end of the summer, four full-time employees: Alice, Andrew, Sarah, and Rachel.
This is solid ground on which to improve. Those original Kenway orders from 2012 are finally closing, we have a working relationship with a Chicago manufacturer, and are learning the nuances of deadlines and production timeline estimates.
We know we have a few orders still outstanding and we are working hard to complete them. We apologize for mistakes made along the way. Overall, it has been a really great year for us. We are extremely excited to have so many people interested in what we truly love doing. They make it possible for us to keep creating. It’s truly a blessing.
2014: The Year in Preview
I feel like I haven’t drawn a single new design this year. It’s not quite true, but other things have taken center stage. I started this company out of a love for the craft of designing clothing. Now that the foundation is set and I’m surrounded by people who I trust to care for it, it’s time to dust off the drafting table and sketch, draw, and design.
We’ve got a load of ideas for new designs and products to add to the store. I’m going to be designing new things, as well as revisiting old designs from a new angle. We will be branching out from our Birds of Prey collection, though it isn’t finished. We plan to launch one, possibly two new collections this year. Normally a ‘collection’ by a given fashion company is a seasonal, finite concept. We see our collections as ever expanding and evolving. (For instance the Birds of Prey collection will be expanding beyond that specific moniker to include Corvidae, Carthatidae, etc).
We will make further announcement posts over the next few days, including a rough schedule of releases that will of course expand as the year progresses.