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A Second Chance

17 Nov

My husband and I have been blessed again with a beautiful baby. This time around there were no health problems or complications. We said hello to a healthy 9 pound baby boy on September 18th.

Elisha Blanket

About 8 months pregnant with the blanket I made for our son.              Elisha Cypher King Rozier

I didn’t share my pregnancy online until I was about 8 months along. My reclusiveness was out of fear, honestly. Fear that it was too good to be true. It really did not fully register that he would be here. That he would be real. After the loss of one child, the ability to accept the blessing of another is complicated. It was in my subconscious not to get my hopes up, in case something went wrong. I was already preparing for the worst. There was also a feeling of guilt. Like I was somehow forgetting or ungrateful for our daughter Areli because we had moved on. Like we were replacing her. Well, that just wasn’t true at all. But it’s funny how your emotions can fool your brain into thinking something is true when your mind/spirit is trying to protect itself. Continue reading

5 Ways to Customize Your Product. Wow Your Clients!

21 Aug

5 ways to customize your product

Presentation means everything, no matter what business you’re in! Below I’ve outlined some of my key ingredients in a successful presentation of a custom gown to a private client.

1. Find out what your customer really wants.

No matter the product, you may run into clients that know (or think they know) exactly what they want. Intentional or otherwise, it may feel like they just want to use your skill, and not your creative expertise. In the end however, you are the one that will be held accountable for how the product turns out. Keeping this in mind, the best way to start is by having a sit down consultation with the client. Have a list of questions ready. Come up with the questions beforehand that hone in on the direction of their vision. Gain insight on how they want to feel about this product and/or how they want it to make them feel. Be honest about what you can and cannot do. Be honest about pricing. If the requests increase, let them know right away the costs that will be incurred.

Having clients that basically give you free reign over a design idea is always a pleasure! Ronisha came to me in need of a reception dress that would flatter her figure, while also showing her sophistication as a newlywed.

2. Give them your input as an expert and come up with a vision that meets the clients requirements and has your personal touch.

I came up with the sketch below. Ivory stretch satin with Swarovski crystals adorning her from the neckline, all the way down the front of the dress in flattering V shapes. The satin hugging her curves, while ivory chiffon peaks out at her shoulders and neckline. Ivory chiffon drapes down the back in a double layer, while a single fan pleated layer subtly shows off her legs in the front.

Lucky for me, Ronisha loved this sketch and gave me the ok to go ahead and get started. Sometimes, it may take some revising, or even coming up with a new concept entirely. Just make sure they are happy before going past this step.

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How to dye your hair pink! The pink hair that changed my life!

5 Mar

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In the last year of college when I was almost done with my master’s degree, I decided I wanted pink/purple hair. So I did it! I felt great! Like the spark of life on the inside was shown on the outside. Being a fashion designer/stylist, crazy cuts and colors are something that I see all the time, even if just within the industry. So I felt like I found something that was sort of a happy medium between the professional world and the creative world. I mean, red is a natural color.. and pink is only a few shades off from that right? Well, apparently not to everyone!

The video is detailing how I got the color, read on for how it changed my life!

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Graduation! √ – Master’s degree. Movin’ Right Along…

7 Sep

It’s time to get real. Not that I haven’t been for the past four years, but working on a Bachelor’s, then Master’s degree has been one of the main focuses for some time now. And since I officially graduated on Friday, September 6th, much of my focus will now be directed toward caring for and expanding the Areli Sinclair clothing line.

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School can be rough on a business. It takes a lot of time that would normally be dedicated to projects and operations. Thankfully, Full Sail University takes great consideration of their Entertainment Business Master’s students. Many of our assignments were things that I could use for my business in real time and would have been doing on my own anyway. What can I say, I was able to write my own professional, realistic, thirty something page business plan by the end of it, and get so many great insights from instructors on everything from how to pitch it to investors, down to how to deal with employees on a day to day basis.

I met so many wonderful people- many connections that I know will never be broken. Finding people who have similar values and passions is priceless, expecially in the art industries.

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Now I am ready to take on the  “real” world and show them all I’ve got! I’ve molded my brand to perfection. Little did I know, it was molding me all the while. Personal situations that arose while in both my Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees all ended up becoming part of my brand story and a foundation for my life and my clothing line.

Your early 20’s are a funny time in life. You’re more mature than a teenager, but just coming into adulthood and finding out what life’s all about. Most times, it shows up with a slap in the face. I won’t hesitate to tell you that that is how it was for me. But there comes a point when you begin to realize that all those bumps in the road are there for a reason. This is the way growth happens. True happiness forms when we learn to appreciate all aspects of life, not just the good times.

In the end, I am so elated that I decided to go to school… and then back again. Many people didn’t, and still don’t understand my decisions. But that’s ok. Your life is your own, and living it to make the best “you” will end up being the best for everyone.

Onward and upward my loves… let’s see where the wind takes me from here 😉

~A. Roze

How to Start a Business Online. 4 Fundamental Steps

8 Jun

As I’m nearing the end of my master’s degree (only 3 more months, I can’t believe it!) I have been taking time these past couple of weeks to really focus on my business model and its online presence. Keeping up with the times is an absolute necessity for any online business with hopes of success.

So I’ll delve into some notes on my recent experiences and discoveries when it comes to running a business online.

1-    What is your brand image?

This is something that I have personally struggled with over time. Being that I am very versatile and love so many different clothing styles, it was hard for me to really narrow down and choose what specific niche my clothing design is.

But trust me, as hard as it may be, targeting your brand image is a must. The main piece of advice I can stand on is this: stay true to yourself. Doing something because a person of authority tells you, or you think you may make more money, or it’s a quicker path to success will only dig a deeper hole. I ended up changing things around multiple times, finally landing back where I started in the first place.

Some things to consider about brand image:

  • Who is your client? This means you need to know more than just their age and ethnicity. What do they do on the weekends? What are their hobbies? What music do they like, etc.
  • What do you want your brand to feel like? This takes some thinking. What does the Starbucks brand feel like? And why does it seem to match the feeling of the Apple brand? Consider your senses the next time you go into your favorite store, coffee house or restaurant. Notice the things around you that carry the vibe that you recognize so easily when you think of that place.
  • Consider your competition. Who are they and what are they doing to get the attention of your potential clients? What strong and weak points do you notice? How can you differentiate yourself?
  • What’s your story? Consider your goals as a business. What is the hook that makes you different or intriguing? Consider the emotional triggers you will ignite when telling people about your brand’s story.

2-    Your own website vs. third party platforms.

Making a website for your business is always the best option. It gives the feeling of professionalism and creates trust in the eyes of the client. However, this may not be an option right away as most startups are funded solely by the owner. Putting together a makeshift website from a template is an option, but I guarantee it will make most people shy away. It makes the company look less reputable. Having a solid, professional looking website is truly the best option.

Then there is the choice of using third party as a platform to sell your merchandise. As an example, ww.reverbnation.com is a great site for music artists to network and sell their music.

Weigh your platform options:

  • Having your own website gives you more control.  It also gains better search engine optimization than third party platforms.
  • Consider your customer. What will they feel most comfortable with?
  • How are you going to get paid? Paypal is by far the most trusted way to send and receive money online. Get an account. It’s free and you can transfer money straight to your bank account with minimal fees.

3-    Create a marketing plan. Without question, you absolutely must have all the standard social networks in tact if your business is online. The first thing people want to do when they find your business is check out your Facebook, twitter, etc. It builds credibility and status instantly. The key is finding where exactly your customer is online and formulating your marketing plan around that.

  • Do more than just be present- Interact!
  • Find people who have similar businesses. For example, if you have a make up line, friend and follow others in the beauty industry as well as related industries like fashion and photography. Forums are a great place to do this. People share insights, tips and carry great discussions in forums.
  • Don’t forget about the offline world. Be present at related events in your area. Learn who’s who. Have your professional business cards ready to direct people to where you are online.
  • Create a campaign. Something that you will focus on and push for a set amount of time. This could be a sale, a special product launch, a grand opening, etc. This will help your new audience understand what your all about. Consistent brand image is vital in this stage.

4-    Blog. The main thing about blogging is establishing yourself as an expert in your craft. People will come to your blog to learn from you. So you want to blog about a topic you’re confident in.

  • Post consistently. At least once a week is ideal.
  • Find sites that you can submit your articles to.
  • The more links your blog is tied to, the higher Google ranks you in searches.
  • Make sure you’re using the right keywords and tags. This is how people find you!
  • Check out other blogs to see what is working for others.

Final thoughts on this topic; be honest. Keeping up communication with clients and colleagues is the best way to build and maintain your online relationships. Never forget that on the other side of that screen is an actual person with thoughts and feelings, just like you.

Thoughts? Suggestions? As always, I’m open to improvement. 🙂

~A. Roze

Orlando MC Eturn on Women in Hip Hop, Underground vs. Mainstream, and her Upcoming Tour!

27 May

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Recently I caught up with Eturn- the quickly uprising female mc, who has been creating an awesome buzz in Orlando’s hip hop scene as of late.

Her debut video for the single “Come Close” with DJ SPS was released last Tuesday. It completes the essence of the song by taking you on a mind bending tour of the contrast between mistrust in different aspects of life, while examining the issue of conformity in politics and in hip hop. I also took notice that in the video, she leaves the psychiatrist’s office the same way she went in, giving reassurance to trust your own instinct. Seeing the video moved me to reach out to her to discuss women in hip hop, the underground versus the mainstream, and what she has planned next.

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Time Management takes an Attitude Adjustment

13 May

21118_10200783224239620_1777369006_nLately time has been moving what seems like faster than ever. Even now I have to do this blog post in the middle of the night because I just got done with homework, dying my hair and trying to lay out plans for tomorrow. In a way, I feel like everyone is going through the same thing. I feel like there is something in the air. A shift happening. Like a change in the season. Maybe its because the literal season is changing as well.

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