Pattern Store: Reflections on the first four months!

It’s hard to believe that it’s been almost four months since we made our first sale at the Pattern store! The single dollar hanging behind the register is a reminder of how supportive our fashion community is in Indy. The curiously hung dollar is also a reminder of the store’s potential and by extension, the potential of our local makers.

This post is basically a thank you to everyone who has supported us through shopping, kickstarter, sharing the social media love, and those still planning to make their first visit to the store. It is also a reminder of why it’s important to keep sharing the story of the Pattern!

Some of you may know that I was not expecting to jump back into retail. That is until Polina Osherov, Pattern’s Executive Director, shared with me the vision for the store. The Pattern Store was not just going to be another retail store on Mass Ave, but a tool to continue the mission of Pattern, “…to provide a springboard for business success by showcasing local talent through our publication and store.”

Beyond offering a unique shopping experience with published stylists and industry insiders, the Pattern Store hit the ground running to use the new home of Pattern to promote the local fashion industry. The store buys product from local designers and brings national brands to Indy, that compliment the looks of our Indy talent. The store also offers competitive consignment opportunities for local designers to introduce their product to the retail space. This gives us a chance to get real customer feedback to the local talent. This is invaluable feedback that benefits our local designers to continue to design product that sells, and in turn grow their business and create jobs in the sector.

We are also using the space to highlight new collections and host pop-up events for local talent. A few weeks ago we hosted an industry insider showcase of the A/W collection of local label Studio NTK.

The Presentation had a positive impact on Studio NTK. We ended up with a couple good orders from local boutiques, including Pattern. Some of our designs were featured in an editorial shoot for IndyStar”, said Studio NTK owner, designer Nataliya Kitic.

Happily, we have seen great demand for products from local brands. One such brand, Leather Feather Stone by Brooke Lindemann has been incredibly popular. We started out by stocking just a few of her pieces, but when those sold out in record time we were able to expand our inventory of her leather goodies to meet the demand. And incidentally, we’ll be hosting Brooke in-store for a one day pop-up during the December First Friday!

Another great thing about having a physical space, is that it has allowed us to partner in new ways with local arts and cultural organizations. We had a great time working with the Indiana State Museum for their American Spirits fundraiser. We curated a special collection of fashionable prohibition era inspired looks to coincide with their themed event. The Indiana State Museum even arranged for us to feature a special artifact from the collection, in store. We were the only place in Indy to have the opportunity to do so. This was a unique opportunity to introduce Indy’s fashion culture to a whole new market.

To continue the momentum of the past few months, and to offer additional resources to our growing community, we are planning to host a monthly Fashion Review day, starting in the spring. The purpose of the Fashion Review day is to offer up-and-coming designers and brands an opportunity to present their collections for consideration for the Pattern Store and, in turn, receive honest, critical feedback from our team with the goal of helping the designer/brand be as best prepared to enter into the retail fashion environment as possible with the greatest chance of commercial success.

None of the successes of the past few months could have been possible without the incredible support of our volunteers and of course, all of you who have shopped the store. Please keep coming back – especially this coming Saturday when the whole of Mass Ave is going to be buzzing with excitement for Small Business Saturday!

These past few months have been a whirlwind of activity with small, but important steps being taken daily towards a more robust fashion industry. Thanks for coming along on this adventure with us!

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