Back in 2006 when I became an entrepreneur, the second company I started was an online pet company. I had no prior experience in the pet industry or textiles. I would have to learn everything along the way. I also acknowledged that some mistakes would come with a cost and that would be the cost of my education.
The idea was to design an all in one jacket / harness for dogs. This new design would help dog owners keep their pets warm during cold months without the hassle of trying to fit the happy puppy with a jacket and a harness.
Since I’m not a designer I contracted a designer to design the piece. After a few designer duds I learned about The International Academy For Design, which had a graduating class with fresh talented designers looking for opportunities. A job posting was sent to the academy and soon after five fresh talented designers were interviewing to become the designer for the pet label.
Months later the final design and prototype were completed but only after many iterations. It was ready for production. Fortunately, manufacturing wasn’t a big concern because my business partner had family with ties to manufacturing.
Another piece that was designed was a silver locket engraved with the company logo. The locket was something spectacular. Unfortunately, the price tag to design the locket was about five or six times more than it should have been. The designer that was contracted didn’t have his own lab or equipment. It wasn’t until I went to pickup the locket that I learned the locket legally wasn’t mine because the designer never paid the jewelry house he worked out of for the materials.
The web store finally launched in December of 2007, but as quickly as the store opened it was shut down due to another pending issue, again around the design of the silver locket.
I made a ton of mistakes working on that project and with each mistake I learned something new. If that company were operating today I would still be using all my knowledge that I gained during the start-up phase. In the end the company didn’t get off the ground because of differences between people that had nothing to do with the pet company.
I would not be where I am at today if it were not for all those mistakes I made. Lessons all well worth experiencing – Invaluable.