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6 Quick Questions with Elyce Arons, Co-founder of Frances Valentine (part 2)

by Female Startup Club
February 15th 2022
00:08:49
Description
Today we’re learning from a fashion veteran, Elyce Arons. She’s spent more than a decade building Kate Spade and then went on to do it all again with Frances Valentine.  Frances Valentine was founded ... More
are you on the lookout for a new podcast to listen to Being Boss by Emily Thompson is brought to you by the hubspot podcast network. And something I love about this show is getting the chance to support my community of fellow creators and business owners. Being boss is an exploration of not only what it takes, but what it means to be a boss as a creative business owner, freelancer or side hustler, and I know it's going to resonate with so many of you who are listening in. So if you like female startup club, trust me, you're going to love being boss. Welcome back. Here Are the six quick questions. So question # one, What's your why? Why are you doing what you're doing? I absolutely love creating and designing and I love doing it with my team. It's just it's so fulfilling. It makes me so happy all through the pandemic. I came in every single day because the samples would come here and I just, even if I was by myself, I try them on and it's just I love what I do. It's really fun. Sounds like a big like dress up closet where you can just come in and feel like try beautiful things on and spin around.

I love that. That sounds so fun. Question # two is what's been the number one marketing moment so far for Frances Valentine. I think I'd have to say it was our catalog, our very first catalog when all the stars aligned everything came together just at that moment in time? Question # three is what's your go to business resource when you have to think about a book or a podcast or a newsletter. Well as I mentioned, I get up really early and I read the trade papers every morning as well as a lot of other news. So I would probably say women's were daily in business of fashion. Love that. Going to link them both in the show notes. For anyone listening, Question # four is how do you win the day? What are your AM and PM rituals and habits that keep you feeling happy and motivated and productive? Oh boy, I wake up really early. I think I think it's just because I grew up on a farm and we always woke up early to the roosters. You were lazy if you did it, crack of dawn. Yes, exactly.

The rest of my family hates it. But I'm always up really early. So how early we talking. I usually get up at 5:30 or six Every day. That's early for my teenagers. They're up, you know, as late as can be 11 or 12. But it's probably, I love getting up and having time to read articles and read the papers in the morning. It's one of my favorite things. Make coffee, hang out in front of the fire with the dog. That's part of one of my morning things that I love and get into the office early. That's really great. You know the second is going home and making dinner for my family. I love to cook. I am a plant based eater, which can be very challenging. So it's hard for my husband to make things for me because you know you have to really wrap your head around it and learn how to make things that are all plant based, which can be a challenge. I'm used to it myself anyway, I love doing that. I love making dinner for my family. Yeah, I mean I guess it makes so much sense. It's another really creative outlet for you to you know, create, create fun things exactly. What's your favorite at the moment?

I'm always looking for new plant based recipes. So I made this up myself but I made a shepherd's pie and it was jardine, the chicken strips you can buy that are you know, obviously made of tofu or soy carrots, celery, onions, peas, corn, sweet potato and then covering it with mashed potatoes. Yeah, I haven't had a shepherd's pie in, you know, forever I don't eat meat, I eat dairy but I don't eat meat and that sounds delicious. It's really good and it's so easy to make, I mean use vegetable stock and then you have to mix a little flour with I use almond milk, unsweetened almond milk and mix it together too. You know, once you have the pot boiling you mix that in and it thickens everything and then I just put that in a big dish with the mashed potatoes on top and bake it and it's really good. I'm so excited for the future as well of like lab grown meat and all these kinds of things because I mean everything now is amazing. The options that you can get on the market are just like so much better.

Yeah, it's, I mean there are just so many options, but I'm also excited for the future. Me too. Me too. But it's getting better all the time. It's just really amazing. Yeah, it really is, it really is. I digress question number five, We might have covered this already, but let's see if there's a different answer that we can come up with what's been the worst money you've ever spent in the business and how much was it? We love dollars over here. We want to know, I don't want to put anybody down. That's the only problem. You can keep the name, you know, fuzzy. We don't need to say the name. So there's a big online retailer. It was early on in the business and they wanted to carry our products and we were, you know, they came in and sold us on and they're like, it's gonna be great, you're gonna be huge. You're just gonna sell out. It's gonna be crazy. But it's going to cost you $50,000 to market this. So we did it, we got no business out of it and we realized that retailer wasn't for us. You know, it was, it was supposed to be a new dawn for them and they were really going to take over the fashion industry and lesson learned, an expensive lesson learned early on, expensive lesson learned, don't love that.

And question # six, last question, this is kind of like a similar age question to the last one, but is there a major fail or major mistake that you can share in the business and how you dealt with it? Yes. So at one point we had Sold out of basically everything in the summer of 2018 and it was a very emotional time for us and so there was a huge demand for our products. So we ordered according to the demand And which we shouldn't have and I, as a seasoned professionals should have known better that you're supposed to order for between 20 and 40% of demand because you know, by the time you get those products here, but I was in a very emotional state and I just thought, yes, we have to do it, we have to do it. So we ordered to the demand and we had a lot. of product left over. So our inventory levels were way too high By the summer of 2019 and I would just say it's so much better and I've had to learn this lesson several times, but now I'm just going to stick with me, we pretty much make everything in small batches at Frances valentine.

And the aim is to sell out of them after a period of 4-6 weeks advice for anyone is make things in as small matches as you're able to because to have inventory is just cash sitting, you know, in boxes and it's so much better to have the cash in the pocket to be able to deploy for marketing, whatever else you need for more manufacturing, whatever you need. But it doesn't tie you up if you have no inventory. So that's probably one of the best lessons I could tell anyone. Yeah, that's a great lesson to end on Elise. Thank you so much for coming on the show and sharing your journey. You are just so bright and bubbly. I've loved chatting with you. Thank you so much. I have really enjoyed chatting with you too. Thanks so much dude, Hey, it's done here. Thanks for listening to this episode of the female startup club podcast. If you're a fan of the show, I'd recommend checking out female startup club dot com where you can subscribe to our newsletter and learn more about our D.

I. Y. Course the ads, N. B. A. I also truly appreciate each and every review that comes our way. It might seem like such a small thing, but reviews help other heirs find us. So please do jump on and subscribe rate and review the show. And finally, if you know someone who would benefit from hearing these inspiring stories, please do share it with them and empower the women in your network. See you soon. Mhm, mm hmm.

6 Quick Questions with Elyce Arons, Co-founder of Frances Valentine (part 2)
6 Quick Questions with Elyce Arons, Co-founder of Frances Valentine (part 2)
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