Less than a month ago, we launched our signature Lavender Linen Flutter Dress that became our single most sold design in Ele Story's short history since about a year ago. We were very nervous, excited, terrified, if you ask me -- not knowing if its success was a fluke.
Well, it wasn't a fluke. It has flown off the shelves again this year, and we are currently cutting and sewing another batch of these limited beauties again (using up all of this gorgeous floral print double gauze fabric), in time for Easter this year!
This year, I've added a Mommy-n-Me blouse to the collection, as well as the sweetest hair bow to go with the girls' outfit...I couldn't be more excited about this whole combo!
But, backtrack 18 months ago, I spotted this beautiful lavender linen in Los Angeles, and while I knew I loved it, I had no idea what it would be used for. "Perhaps an accent color for our Spring 2016 collection?" (thinking linen is a new territory for us, and I wasn't sure how it would drape...I mean, would people worry about linen looking wrinkled? I wondered). On the spot, I bought the entire roll of 20 yards, not thinking I would really even use it.
That same day, I also fell in love with this amazing vintage looking floral on double gauze. Amazing. I knew it was the last of what they had so I bought it up right on the spot. Again, no plans for how I would use the floral either.
The linen sat there, very sad and untouched for quite a while. The Flutter dress design had been launched (much too late) in Fall of 2015, the previous season, and was kind of a flop. And ironically, it was my favorite design probably EVER up to that point. I was so proud of it, so excited about it. So the launch was rather disappointing and perplexing. I was trying to figure out if there was any rhyme or reason. Was it just the wrong season for this style? Wrong fabrics? Too thick? Too different from what I had done before?
Hubby encouraged me to move on and not dwell on what could have, would have, if only...we both knew there was something there, something that I dearly loved about that flutter dress silhouette. Especially as I had spent a good 8 months finessing the Flutter dress pattern, iteration after iteration, until I felt like I found the perfect fit and combination of materials, etc. etc.
So...several months later, as I was dreaming up new designs, it suddenly occurred to me that this lavender linen and the vintage floral gauze would make a great combo for something! I pulled out my beloved Flutter Dress pattern, and then it all came together quickly. I was still skeptical, unsure, scared really, until it hit the site and we suddenly realized we had a bestseller on our hands!
This year, adding the Women's Off-the-Shoulder blouse was something that I had dreamed of doing -- it takes a long time to get the pattern just right, and the construction details all worked out in the sample making stages -- so this took a while, but I'm so so thankful that our little team hustled and made it happen. And I even got to model for it (photo courtesy of my hubby...yeah, that's what being a business owner is like, you end up playing many many hats, including modeling your own clothes!).
I am so grateful for your support of our small business. At Ele Story, we truly take great pride in being made in San Francisco from start to finish -- designing, cutting, sewing, packing, and shipping these out to your sweet girls -- though the cost of making clothes here is significantly higher here than taking it overseas, we hope to continue to make clothes here, and to continue to build relationships with the locals that help us carry out the designs that I had only dreamed of.
Thanks for reading, and happy Spring!
Creative Director/Designer/co-founder (and sometimes model ;)) of Ele Story