Fashion.... I have always had an eye for Fashion and how to improve my look. Not too long ago I use to be your boy with overgrown hair, bootcut jeans' and Addidas high tops. Unfortunately, this look stayed with me until I was around 15 / 16 years old. To be fair my mother played a very influential role for the change of my fashion style. It was when I saw the potential I had that was when I decided to change things. The fact that I had a huge interest in fashion led to open an idea of me starting up a clothing line as my own. Most people in this world can adjust and cope with the "9-5" life, I knew that was certainly not the road I wanted to go down. Then again I guess not everybody is blessed with talent, to just easily start up a business and making it successful overnight. As a teenager, we all want a part-time job just to have a bit of cash and to make a living for ourselves. Luckily enough for me, I had the opportunity to explore out into different areas of work, areas' such as, working in an amusement park, working in a sweet shop, working as a shadow P.E. teacher, which I actually all disliked and dreaded waking up in the morning to do for that day. Just recently in November 2016 I was employed as a crew member in a fast food restaurant I didn't last too long there, to be honest, but I absolutely hated it there, horrible atmosphere and the work we had to do was just not fun at all, the hours were long (8 am - 6 pm, 12 noon - 7 pm, 4 pm - till close "12 midnight" generally but could be there until 1:30 am or latest 3 am depending on how much cleaning and washing we had to do). To be fair my manager was a very nice guy, but at the ending of my contract, it was both a mutual agreement about me leaving/letting me go. During my time at the Fast Food restaurant, this was when I then realised and started asking myself " what am I going to do with my life? " " Do I really want to work 8 am - 5 pm? "How do people enjoy this labour work?".
During the time of all these thoughts popping into my head, this was when I then realised I want to work in a clothing shop. After my departure out of that fast food restaurant, I was left unemployed, jobless, bored and broke. At this time all I had to look forward to was rugby training every day and Sunday matches, don't get me wrong I love rugby and love it more when I'm out on the pitch doing bits, but I wanted to explore out and do that little extra. On a Friday evening, my mother was driving out to collect my siblings from boarding school, I thought to myself... hold on; let me print out a few cv's and drop it to the shopping centre near the school. So my mother and I both arrived waiting for my siblings to come out, as my mum was waiting I just then quickly ran over to the shopping centre to drop in a few CV's for Fashion shops...
There was one particular store, relatively new. And just two days ago ( from the day I was dropping in my CV ) a friend of mine just got hired in that clothing shop, So I chanced my arm and dropped in a CV, happy days, I met an extremely nice manager and she started asking me questions and took note of my available days and when I was free for an interview. That same night I later texted my friend ( who recently got employed for this clothing shop too ) asking her question's like "How many people were they looking for?" "What's it like working there?" basically the general question's you'd ask if you were truly concerned about a working environment before joining. The next day, while I was about to leave my house, I then received a phone call from the clothing shop asking me " Hey OJ, How are you? Are you available to come down to our store at 2 pm for an interview? ". I was absolutely overwhelmed that I got this called being offered an interview the day after I dropped my CV in the store. Without any hesitation, I dressed as sharp as a could but also put an urban look to it ( because this was an urban/modern shop ). 20-25 minutes later, I arrived at the shop, my heart was racing, sweat coming down my forehead, nerves running through my body, I couldn't believe what had happened. But then I quickly snapped out of my unstable condition and regained my confidence within seconds. The interview took place shortly after, asking me the basic questions such as "why did you choose us?" "what can you offer to the team?" "are you motivated?" I answered all of them accordingly and honest. She (manager) then gave me feedback after 10 - 15 minutes and welcomed me to the company's team. I lasted 3 and a half months in the shop before my contract with the company had ended. The work was very enjoyable, The clothes were all " in fashion " clothing, the staff were good banter and fun to work with. The hours were as you pleased, most of the time they had the new members working very suitable hours ( 4 hours ) if you requested for me or to change your working day, they were very flexible with that too, which was great. I was allocated as a Christmas part-time crew member, shortly after Christmas and new years the shopping centre was getting less busier every day so that meant in less staff being needed and fewer hours being handed out for the staff, so then we shortly all became redundant ( Christmas staff ).
My time at the clothing shop ( as a job ) was the most enjoyable by far, this then strongly inspired me to continue working in the fashion industry. I was then left jobless, bored and broke. But there was this open idea I had of starting my own clothing line which I had been thinking of doing since Winter 2015. The reason to why I had never started this business until now was simply because I was too scared of what others would think and was only thinking negative thoughts towards the idea. Which then led to a serious psychological disbelief that was stuck in the back of my head forever. What made me actually take the risk and start up this business was my little brother, he wanted to start up his own business ( selling watches ) but I told him forgot about that and let's do a clothing line, put our skills together and start up. We were both good with the technical bits ( photoshop, designing, web designing, analysing etc..) After three sleepless nights, we then decided to launch the Instagram page and set up the website, then as followed set up a foundation for the business. On the fourth day, we started to work with an extra bit of intensity to try to get things moving at a faster rate, We had a professional designer and networker that always wanted to work with us, so we then combined and started working alongside with both the designer and networker. After a week of non-stop working, staying up late to edit things to perfection we gave the public a sneak peak to our website and products being sold. In my eyes, I had seen the website as a completely disastrous website and needed some more adjustment to it. So I then made the website private and started working and readjusting things again to make it stand out that bit more and to add a sense of professionalism to it.
Don't get me wrong, all of this is a lot of work, but I could be here for years explaining and going into detail of what we did day by day for the running of this business. Up until now, I am still blown away by the feedback coming from the public, the private and even the most amazing people, my friends all over Ireland, who have been truly supportive of this clothing line. Would like to say a big thank you to everybody who is supporting the vision, as it mean's a lot to me seeing you guys on board, motivating me to continue to run this business and bring out better designs and products to you guys.
I would briefly like to say Thank you again for those who took time reading this article you guys are the best.