Natasha and both of her business partners were casually having tea one day when the question popped up, “Shall we start up our own online fashion store?” and that was how Dressing Concept Store was born.
The Monash University graduate has always been fond of fashion and when she was sixteen, she used to subscribe to pre-teen magazines such as Seventeen and Pop Star. Always loved the idea of matching pieces of clothing, she shared with us that starting her own business was scary but all in all, this passion project was an exciting start for a journey they’ve always dreamt of being part of.
“The passion for ‘dressing up’ and having pieces which are not massively available at high street stores was what drove us to start this and sharing it with other similar minded people,” she said.
Get to know Natasha
Tell us about where you grew up and what was your family life like?
I’m Natasha, born and raised in Kuala Lumpur. I grew up in the bustling city of Kuala Lumpur with a 59200 postcode. My parents have always been the one encouraging and supporting me in trying out new things and hobbies and this new venture was nothing short of that. They’ve always believed in the saying “if you never try, you’ll never know” and I sort of grew up with that idea and let myself be more fearless.
What can you share with those who are struggling with body image issues and how can your designs help boost women’s confidence?
I feel that body image issues are a mental block and barrier which you’ll have to overcome on your own and there’s no one out there who’s able to help you overcome that barrier if it doesn’t come from within. For me, confidence comes from within and if you’re comfortable with your body, you should be able to wear any design that you like. Hence why we do have backless dresses stocked in size L as well.
What makes your designs stand out compared to the rest of the brands out there?
Our designs are timeless pieces which you can wear over and over again in the next 5-10 years. It’s not seasonal nor is it “on trend”. We take a minimalist approach towards our designs and it enables a woman to look elegant from day to night.
What are the most unforgettable memories and unspeakable challenges that you have faced during the start of the business?
Being young individuals with full-time jobs, this passion project of ours was an exciting start for a journey we’ve always dreamt of. Starting the journey itself has multiple challenges as all of us had never ventured into this industry before nor experience running a business. I think, all in all, it’s the learning curve which makes it unforgettable while challenging at the same time.
What’s integral to the work of a founder of a fashion brand?
It is important to understand and realize that there will always be other brands out there who are criticizing you and your work but to never let that break your spirit. You won’t be able to please everyone with your designs and there will always be haters who don’t agree with your work. The fashion landscape is an ever-competitive space and if you’re not up for that challenge or not in that frame of mind, I’d say to stay away from it.
How do you cope with rejection?
For me, I would evaluate and see if the point made was valid and to work on it harder. It’s a mental barrier which is difficult to cross and a lot of times it is the reason why we are stuck in our comfortable safe space and not progressing because we are not allowing ourselves to fail.
Share with us something that you’re working on improving about yourself and the business. How will that help with your goals?
Being a small business, we have to rely on ourselves to make it work. In today’s day and age digital marketing is key for any business and I have been taking courses / learning more about it during my own time and with time, we only can get better!
Which design of yours are your bestsellers and why?
Alexis Winged Dress and Monroe Dress are our bestsellers and I think it’s because of the unique designs which are not available in your regular high street stores which makes them more eye-catching. This is the reason why we started this journey, to bring in specially curated unique pieces in and I’m glad that others are enjoying it as much as we do!
Do you have any new designs that you’re working on at the moment?
Yes, we will have new pieces coming in next month, stay tuned!
What makes you excited when you get to work? Do you have a mantra or life quote that you go by?
I always remind myself of how blessed I am and grateful for the lifestyle I am able to live. And for that, I should not complain when the going gets tough. This includes getting to work in the morning, even if it means waking up at ungodly hours of the morning or staying till late in the office.
It’s no doubt that this stay at home period has been challenging, how are you and your family coping so far with things? How was business?
My family and I are doing good so far. We’re thankful to have a roof over our head and that everyone is healthy. As for business, it definitely isn’t taking off as it should as everyone is going out less and having no holiday to go, but we are forever grateful that we still have orders and customers during this period.
How do you stay true to yourself and what’s your definition of success?
I stay true to myself when I don’t see others as a competition. In this digital age, it can get challenging but I always remind myself to think about how far I have come and it’s a race between me and myself, not me and others. Success for me cannot be measured. What is success to me might not be to others but I take every milestone in life as a small success worth celebrating!