Alma de Ace presents an alternative to the usual London vintage gear streetwear. Alma believes in style over fashion and sources fabrics with life and feel.
How did you get the idea for Alma de Ace?
I’ve always had a strong passion for fashion and always followed upcoming brands. It wasn’t until I was at University that things started to kickstart. I had time on my hands and strong network of friends to build on. A lot of students were starting nights and events, which made me feel there was a gap for a clothing brand at university. I found that doing a clothing brand was the best way to combine my creativity alongside my passion for fashion.
Now I’ve moved to London and built the brand around the London fashion scene.
How difficult was the start and what challenges you had to overcome?
The main challenge I faced was the nature of the market that I was going into, fashion is an incredibly competitive market. Then there was my lack of ‘experience’. I had no fashion background, although I liked fashion, I didn’t have any contacts or advisers in the fashion world to guide me at the start. I’ve had to teach myself everything, from website design, accounts, social media and dealing with manufacturers. This also came down to the fine tuning parts, such as working out the breakdown in sizes to what colours were going to be more popular for the first order of products. The first order had to be the most important to avoid mistakes and costing your business from the very start. Everything I did was a risk at the start but you have to take those steps in order to improve and learn for the future.
Who is your target audience?
Our core target audience is 16-26 year olds but we want to create a brand that has longevity and is open to everyone.
What is the USP of your startup?
Providing timeless classic pieces with a real sense of brand identity that’s not just in the logo. Our two-tone colours, I feel are something that really stand out without being too in your face.
We take 90s inspired looks and transform them into a more modern classic look for your everyday.
Can you describe a typical workday of you?
We’re a still a young business, so there isn’t really a typical day. This makes everything so exciting, and exactly why I started this journey. In the mornings, I usually spend an hour or two going through emails and dealing direct with customer questions regarding orders.
I then set aside some time for social media, uploading our product posts to Instagram and Facebook. This time also involves content planning for the rest of the week, searching for new photographers and shoot locations.
In the afternoon I usually have a meeting or call with our digital marketing team to go through our social channels and any changes that need to be made before the weekend.
I also get weekly updates from our factory out in Portugal, on new stock samples, restocking sold out products or amending any material problems for the items going into production.
Where do you see yourself and your startup Alma de Ace in five years?
The dream is to have a flagship store in London. A place where we can build a community, a place where we can put on events. Where customers can come in and get to know Alma de Ace a bit better. One day we would also like to expand across the Atlantic to America – working with an exclusive store to stock us or a wholesaler to distribute out there.
We want to also expand our collection offering to a wide variety of clothes that can become a staple piece in any wardrobe.
What 3 tips would you give other Start-up founders on the way?
Take Risks and trust yourself
Taking risks is inevitable when building a business and you have to prepare yourself for those inevitable difficult times. When you first start out, the chances are you won’t have a big team or a huge marketing spend from the get go, so decisions are going to have to run solely from you.
Speak to as many people as possible, with friends, family and those who have been in similar positions. These things take time to get off the ground so don’t panic in the early stages. Every day is different so don’t be put off by the competition. Take your time.
Finally, get to know your market. I feel a lot of people get too excited about rushing into things. The best approach is to take your time on everything and really work out what you’re launching and that everything is in order. Sometimes the adrenaline and excitement of something new can blur your vision and cause you to make mistakes. Do your research first- but most importantly, enjoy it as it’s going to be part of your everyday!
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Thank you Seb Agace for the Interview
Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.