Meet Christina and David, creators of Lost Cruces Clothing Co. - a new clothing company based out of the small city of Las Cruces, New Mexico. Before Lost Cruces, though, David and Christina started their production company Cut Above The Average, about half a year into their relationship. While they were working on that, they were simultaneously trying to get out of Las Cruces and move to Denver. They quickly realized that a move like that wasn’t realistic in the short term. Soon they began to appreciate, more and more, the beauty of their home city as they understood that they weren’t stuck there - they were choosing to stay.
As they developed their production company, they decided to make their own merchandise! Only problem was, they didn’t really know how (sound familiar?). A local clothing company Organ Mountain Outfitters, however, took David and Christina under their wing, guiding them, teaching them, and even giving them their first printing press that would carry them from making merchandise for Cut Above The Average to launching Lost Cruces Clothing Co.
In school, Christina began studying computer programming, which switched to graphic design and filmmaking, while David studied business and marketing on the side. Their experience and knowledge eventually led up to one post - one post to gauge local interest in the idea around Lost Cruces, that you don’t have to leave your small town to chase your dreams.
Three weeks from that first Instagram post, Christina and David would officially launch Lost Cruces. I asked what went into the launch. Their initial response: a lot of tears, and not a lot of sleep. Over the course of two weeks, they grew their Instagram account to over two thousand followers.
The rapid growth excited them, and worried them - how many shirts would they have to make for the launch? Subsequent posts featured more designs that would be included in their launch. The more people saw, the more they got excited. One thing David and Christina were intentional about doing was responding to as many messages as possible, even having full conversations with their potential customers. Soon enough, over four hundred people were signed up for their mailing list. Christina and David were, “loosing their minds.” They decided to make two hundred shirts for launch to be safe and upon launching Lost Cruces, two hundred shirts turned out to be just right. There are still, however, a few shirts left and these are the last of them until they release their next collection, so… if you’re interested - go grab one!
Currently, David and Christina are working on their second clothing line for Lost Cruces! They’re also working towards getting their shirts into local stores. What they’re most excited about is getting a spot at the Lost Cruces Farmer’s Market. They know it will be a great way to get the word out about their brand and its message, and to connect with the community more personally. In addition to physically putting their apparel on the map, they plan to step up their digital game by producing more content for the brand - stay tuned!
Christina’s first piece of advice is: do your research. Be as prepared as possible before jumping in. In the same breathe: be prepared to make mistakes.
Christina then shared something very insightful. Something that, for them, is built in as a couple, but for others is just as necessary. When these mistakes came, one of them would inevitably crumble. The other would pick them up, dust them off, and tell them that’d it be alright. Then the other would crumble, only to be picked up again. If you’re trying to start a clothing company alone (or anything for that matter), don’t. If you don’t have a partner, or a business partner, to push you on towards your full potential, that’s something you need to be seeking out intentionally. Whether it’s a community of creative doers, or simply a friend who knows what you're capable of and can tell you so when you’re feeling doubt - this, this is important.
David chipped in with a piece of advice that they don’t love giving because it’s so obvious, but really, just as necessary.
And this is important for two reasons. One, because people love to strategize and plan and even research themselves into oblivion.
And while you're doing it, Christina added, “don’t be afraid to ask for help either.”
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Podcast SANS END theme music: Church by BenJamin Banger. Find him @ http://smarturl.it/hjfi20