It has taken me seven months but I am finally writing a Blog post in 2020!
In 2010 I was on the verge of shutting down Deco 22. I had tried so many different versions of my business and I felt I was not getting anywhere. Luckily a Business manager at now renamed “Launch It” believed in me when I did not and convinced me to enter Deco 22 for this award. I was shocked when I won as I thought I was a failure. (Forever grateful for you push Adenike!) Sometimes you are so focused on everything that you are doing wrong you do not notice your successes. Yes, the business models were unsuccessful, but each failure led me on to something better and I was learning and developing lots of new skills along the way.
A year after winning this award I got accepted into Cockpit Arts (Deptford) and many more things have happened since. You can read more on my journey here
Yes, I still make lots of mistakes and I am sure I will continue to make many more. I have had to be brutally honest with what was not working and make lots of changes. It has taken a long time to evolve Deco 22 to a business model that works for me. Ten years after I was about the give up, so glad I kept going. Imagine how many people who have given up as they do not have someone believing in them when they are full of self-doubt.
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” – Melody Beattie
Nearing the end of a challenging 2019, reflecting on how grateful I am for the all those who have been rooting for Deco 22 in one way or another. Sometimes it is the challenges in life that help you to realize the wonderful people that are around you. Turns out this year’s half full glass was priceless!
After just over 13 years of Deco 22, I finally organised a photo shoot WITH models just over a year ago today….yes yes I know! To begin with I was a bit overwhelmed with everything I had to plan. Good old internet to the rescue. I searched for tips on planning a photoshoot and was able to come up with a plan. I basically googled “How to plan my first fashion photo shoot”, used the advice that worked best for me. One of the blogs I found very helpful was Fashion Angel Warrior Before the shoot I had a schedule of the order of the shoot and listed what items would need to be ready for each "look". I also had an estimated time of how long each “look” would take. I discussed with the photographer what backgrounds I wanted and sent him the schedule before the shoot. I knew I wanted a studio fashion shoot because when I thought about a location shoot the overthinking gremlin popped into my head and freaked me out! I knew I wanted images for the website and for social media platforms. My research for what type of “Looks” I wanted was basically seeing what others have done and choosing images that I thought would work for me. This bit of the planning the shoot reminded me of one of my day jobs planning a teaching session. The shoot was on a tight budget so my first attempt at styling a shoot is on display for all to see (EeeeeeeK!) I knew I wanted to maintain the design ethos of Deco22 – “Simple Clean Lines”
For my women’s images I selected items from my own wardrobe and old samples from past collections that I thought would complement the accessories and took some test pictures to see if they would work. I also asked Louise my model to bring some pieces with her for the shoot, plain shoes/boots. As this was on a tight budget Louise did her own hair and make-up. For my male images I had no clothes, so I asked my model to bring a white shirt, black shirt, black trousers and black shoes. My male model Andy was actually an old classmate from University days, who was my model for my final collection many moons ago, so it was a lovely catch up as well! Now of course I made mistakes, I completely forgot to take some of the product only shoots and forgot to bring some pieces to the shoot! However, I am glad I kept the overthinking gene corked and got it done! Huge thank you to photographer James Champion, Models Louise and Andy and my assistant for the day Teresa who took my fast panic rambling at the beginning in their stride. I also want to thank Huawei for the runners up bursary prize which helped make me finally take a leap into to right direction.