Now we are working on SS21 and we are seeing unprecedented challenges ahead in our industry. Many in the fashion world are pledging to get away from the fashion calendar and the never ending treadmill. Getting away from the “Fashion Calendar” would be a welcome relief for Sula. It has always been problematic for us as a micro business. From the sourcing of our cloth, to the dying, cutting and hand stitching, it is all painstakingly slow. Getting our collections from order book to Store takes a long time. One reason being we do not over-buy our cloth. We buy only what we need so it is hard for us to place fabric orders until our order books are finalised.
For Sula the challenges have been immense. With the domino closure of stores around the world our order books were immediately reduced by more than 35%. We were forced to get our online shop updated and fully functioning so that we can try to make up for our loss. This has been a huge success and thank you so much to all of you who have purchased from our online store, and for our stockists who have been so understanding about our need to do this.
And thank you…
Most of our upcoming shows are closed for next season, so our other huge challenge ahead will be to get our loyal stockists to view our new collection. We have written to all of them, and were overwhelmed by the positive response with almost all agreeing to view the collection virtually, with the help of great photography, fabric swatches and even pick boxes. Thank you we will try to make this run smoothly.
Sad endings and new beginnings
So all of this, coupled with furloughed staff, very sad forced redundancies, my own getting used to working from home, have all been challenging. That said we have worked really hard to make a beautiful, inspiring and fresh feeling collection for SS21. And it is not quite finished but is looking wonderful.
A sense of humour
We hope that Sula as a business can learn to slow down, value what is good and let go of what isn’t working any more for us. Humour has been so important, and we hope you enjoy this funny picture of Hannah stitching SS21 samples. Perfectly illustrating how to laugh at ourselves and learn from our mistakes.