Whether you’ve been with us from the beginning of our journey, when we started back in 2016 (7 years ago now!) or you have come along for the ride more recently, we’re so grateful to have had your support along the way and wow what a journey it has been.
I find it hard to articulate what the process of creating Pinky & Kamal has meant to me. I find myself unsure of how to accurately tell this story, one that has completely grasped me by horns. However, I will try my best.
This business for me has been one of inner healing, triumph and sheer determination. We started out with just myself, working 3 other jobs at the time and putting every penny of my wage into the business to help it grow. This took YEARS without really seeing much benefit or reward.
We would get one sale a week in the beginning (if we were lucky!) And I was far too naive to fully grasp the idea of getting help or joining a mentorship until around 3 years in. I had quite low confidence at the time and although in my heart I believed more than ever that this business would become something great, in my mind I did not have the confidence nor knowledge of exactly how to to make it happen. I knew small, slow and tangible steps would be the only way forward for me, and so the pace was set.
In the beginning, I would place small orders of around 30 pieces for about 4 styles, and I would begin to sell them at markets and attempt to grow an online store. Sometimes, heartbreakingly, the pieces would be shipped and arrive completely wrong. I always knew there would be a way to fix them, and took it upon myself to figure out whatever that meant. After all there was no one else, just me and my big dream.
I remember one specific time I ordered about 90 pairs of leggings and the crotches had excess fabric in them (picture the saggiest crotch of all time - NOT a great look) so I had to resew the crotch on every piece quickly to go ahead and sell them at the markets I had booked.
During this time of discovery and learning it felt as though the business would take 1 step forward and 3 steps back. Each knock down hurt and I often felt that awful winding sensation in my stomach, the one you feel when you’ve failed at something that meant a lot to you. I remember feeling completely heart broken, as something I birthed from nothing, thought about all day every day, and wanted to work more than anything would often be crumbling and falling apart beneath me. Well, at least that's what it felt like.
Within the deeper layers of this pain I was feeling and huge lack of self confidence, I didn’t know it at the time but I was also actually building resilience. Day by day I was getting myself up and dusting myself off. I was building stamina, drive and an even deeper hunger for this to work. I continued to learn through trial and error, and got better at it with time.
I started to delve into books, podcasts and became obsessed with listening to other people who had set out to do similar things. My superpower became moving forward.
Over time, and I mean YEARS, I was able to slowly gain self confidence and create an understanding for what I wanted the brand to be and what I wanted it to resemble moving forward. In about year 5 of the business, we took a more serious look at everything we were doing and began to redefine what and who we were and who we wanted to show up as within the industry.
Although I was not very confident in many aspects when starting out the business, I had always been extremely confident in my ability to design. This confidence began to build even stronger as the business grew. As a result, I started to form more important relationships and step confidently into the business owner role as well as the head designer role, which is where my soul absolutely sings. I am completely obsessed with the process of creating and designing clothing and especially finding solutions to problems in a design oriented way.
Fast forward to the last 2 years, the brand has gained such incredible energy and traction, one that I had only dreamed of in the early days of PK. We are so grateful to be connecting on the daily with incredible women from all over the world, who are doing inspiring things.
I am incredibly grateful for our small but mighty team of women who are supporting the brand; Lucia, Denise, Hattie, Aried and Yuke. Plus all the subcontractors involved and the teams that are helping to create the clothing.
When starting Pinky & Kamal, I never intended for it to be something short lived. It was my dream to create a brand with heart and substance, one that would help women connect back in with themselves long-term. Our purpose never wavered from helping women to find their sense of style, worthiness and self- love. We wish to support all women on their journey of mental and physical health and to have a community of happy and healthy (in all areas of their lives) women.
A few key takeaways that creating Pinky & Kamal has taught me:
1. Resilience - I would have quit years ago if I did not have a voice within my heart that told me “keep going - just a little bit further”. I have heard it time and time again throughout the journey, but it has to be one of the main things and the reason we are where we are today. “Just keep going”.
Listen to your gut, but also listen to feedback from your customers. Always go with your gut instinct, but never think you know everything. Approach the business with a beginners mind always. Take feedback from the people who are wearing the clothing, do the research, make the necessary adjustments and go from there.
Be open to change - whether this is mentally or physically or within any other aspect. Do not be afraid to try new things.
Most importantly, you are the reason we keep going and creating wonderful things so from the bottom our our hearts, thank you for following us on this journey. We are forever grateful and we promise to continue to deliver the comfort and style you need to support you on your journey, too.
With love, Nat.