Thankyou for clicking onto my FIRST. EVER. BLOG. POST! *excited face*
I am SO new to this, and haven’t written an essay like this since I left school 7 years ago so please forgive me if it’s a bit all over the place!
So as most of you are now aware, just less than 4 months ago I decided to leave my company HOT!MESS after 4 years of building my Instagram born clothing brand. It wasn’t an easy decision to make by any means- but I knew from the moment I made that decision, it was the right one for me.
I was only 19 when I decided to explore Fashion and create my own brand. I had absolutely no idea that HOT!MESS would be as successful as it was… I was a young girl- a bit of a slob actually- (my mum and dad will correct me, a MAJOR SLOB) I had no job, no real qualifications… I quit musical theatre college after less than a year because I was too lazy to travel there 3 times a week and I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life! I stayed up every night til 3AM- consumed with social media and listening to music. I then wouldn’t get up til mid afternoon the next day. In fact, looking back now, I was quite depressed actually. I was over 2 stone heavier than I am now- and just Did. Not. Know. What. To. Do. With. My. Life.
I knew that I wanted to be a ‘POPSTAR’. I always have ever since I was a little girl- but I just didn’t know how that would happen? I had no confidence, I was at a very low point in my life with family and relationships and I was deeply ashamed with how I looked.
One particular memory sticks in my head just before HOT!MESS became a reality. I remember one day I was searching through Urban Dictionary (if you have never used this before where have you been hiding?) to find a ‘Brand Name’. I’ve always been a dreamer- mainly because at that time my reality SUCKED. So I decided to think up what my clothing brand would be called when I shot to stardom, LOL!
I eventually came across the word ‘Hot Mess’. I liked the meaning. It meant ‘A person or thing that is spectacularly unsuccessful or disordered, especially one that is a source of peculiar fascination’. I was quite ‘edgy’ at this time in my life- I had blue hair, a black nose ring and a lip piercing. You could say I loved contradiction actually, And so I ran into my parents room and told them that when I became famous my clothing brand would be called Hotmess. My dad loved it- but then he loved all of my ideas. He is a dreamer like me and he loved the meaning too. We then never spoke about it for months after that conversation.
Many months later, I stumbled upon these amazing clothes in my Nans wardrobe when visiting her one day. She’s a major hoarder, so she had kept clothes from WAY BACK IN THE DAY! I was IN LOVE! The colours, the prints, the patterns- everything just spoke to me! I hadn’t seen any clothes like this anywhere!!!
I knew at that moment I wanted to create something from these vintage finds. I was so inspired, I begged her to part with them so I could take them home and she let me!
I had a friend who I knew these clothes would look amazing on- I had zero confidence at this time- and so I called her and got her to come over and we started taking photos of her in these clothes.
I made my Instagram @hotmessclothing and started uploading the pictures of her wearing them. The Instagram started to gain a lot of attention (no algorithms existed back then and Instagram was just taking off) and within a few days we had over 1000 followers which at the time was amazing! I got so excited. My head was spinning. People all over the world were asking where they could buy these clothes! I said to my dad ‘ I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING WITH THIS, HOW CAN I CREATE A LABEL INSPIRED BY THESE CLOTHES?’
My dad has a background in womens sportswear and so he started circling ideas with me. I started designing on the computer with one of my dads colleagues- not really knowing whether these creations would ever be real. I got addicted to it all! I loved it, and so eventually we got some beanies made with the HOT!MESS logo on… From there we developed T-shirts, leggings, Leotards and Crops- the rest is history. HOT!MESS spiralled really quickly. Cara Delevigne wore our first collection, followed by people like Pixie Lott, Little Mix, Liam Payne & Kylie Jenner. Soon after that we got approached by Selfridges and Topshop and other online retailers… HOT!MESS was taking off- in a really big way. Nobody could believe it. It was a whirlwind. We got some amazing investors on board at the time and we soared.
Fast forward a couple of years- I’ve done above and beyond everything I have ever wanted to do with this little bedroom business idea. I count my lucky stars everyday that not once did I give up, I kept going. It wasn’t all easy- it might sound it- but trust me- blood, sweat and tears went into that business. I also met my boyfriend through HOT!MESS which I will be eternally grateful for.
But (and it’s a big but) I realised I now needed change. HOT!MESS, whilst still a roaring success, was heading in a direction that I no longer felt involved with. My entrepreneurial spirit and creativeness had fizzled and whilst other people had new ideas and paths they wanted to lead the business down, it just didn’t agree with me.
I had to be true to myself- I was worth more than just designing clothes which, at this point, is pretty much what I spent my days doing.
I started working on my new business before I made my final decision on whether to leave HOT!MESS for good- I needed to make sure I would have a real purpose if I was to leave. Within a few days of my new venture I knew that I wanted to leave and take this on full time. Within 2 weeks I had made my final decision to leave HOT!MESS.
Tellingly, I didn’t feel sad. I actually felt like a weight had been lifted off my chest and I felt ready to throw myself into the world of being my own boss all over again but in a much different way this time. I am a business builder- I like to see something come of nothing. I like to give something my all and I could no longer do this with the direction HOT!MESS was heading. I will always stand by what I believe in. Only a handful of people ever believed that HOT!MESS would ever get off the ground- but I believed in it and in myself- and it did.
HOT!MESS still stands and is going in a slightly different direction, I will always hold a special place in my heart for what the business was when I was still involved. I would like to personally thank everybody who was ever involved with the business when I was- Especially you Mum & Dad. Also my family, Jaime, everybody at Kamani, my team and my boyfriend Jack for always believing in me even when I lost faith in myself.
This new venture of mine is all I have ever dreamed of and I need to thank myself for again believing in ME and taking that huge leap of faith which has now driven me to my destiny and to the best ‘job’ in the world.
I just want to say a massive thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read this and I am really excited for you guys to get to know me a little better!