Year in Review - 2020

Year in Review - 2020
This year was beyond challenging for everyone and as I reflect on this year I am grateful for the ability to see every silver lining. 2020 was arguably the worst year to launch a business, especially in the fashion space, and I am truly overwhelmed by the support from each and every one of you. In a time of constant isolation, I have been able to connect with all of you over email, through social media, and at a handful of trunk shows. I absolutely love hearing from all of you and seeing how you are using and styling your Vogelle bags. This brand has brought some seriously wonderful people into my life this year. ;)
 
After using my entire savings account to create these bags, my dad and I flew to Milan, Italy with a handful of empty suitcases to pick up my first collection this past January. I remember being overwhelmed with fear looking at the full collection thinking I wouldn't even sell one bag! Now… 7 restocks and 3 collections later, we are gearing up for a huge year of growth. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart!
 
Cheers to a healthy new year full of growth, happiness, and connection! xx
- Laura
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JANUARY

My dad and I flew to Milan, Italy to pick up my very first production run of Vogelle bags and brought them all back to Denver, CO in suitcases. By this point, I had spent over six months designing the collection, editing prototypes, and working endless hours during my senior year in college to fund the first order. My dad and I picked up the bags in Milan and then drove through Florence and Tuscany to celebrate and shoot the first collection. It's such a special memory of mine and I can't wait to get back to Italy soon!

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When I say we brought the bags back in suitcases... I'm serious. My manufacturer had to lend us a blue IKEA bag because we completely underestimated how much space we needed.

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My dad loading up the car to take us back to our hotel in Milan!

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FEBRUARY

Vogelle officially launched on February 5! I was able to squeeze in a few sorority trunk shows as well before coronavirus swept the nation. Launching Vogelle was the scariest thing I have ever done, I wasn't even sure if I would sell one bag. I could never have imagined or predicted how much this business would grow and thrive, especially in arguably the worst year to start a business. Thank you all so much for supporting Vogelle this year!

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MARCH

Caelynn Miller-Keyes from The Bachelor received her Black Original Vogelle and has been showing so much love for us ever since! So far, she has posted on her Instagram multiple times and featured our black bag in her YouTube vlog! She also wore her Vogelle to her birthday dinner with Dean. All of these posts have not been sponsored which is so exciting because it shows how much she genuinely loves her bag!

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March was also the month that coronavirus really caused everything in our lives to come to a screeching halt. It was a challenging month that caused me to rethink my entire business plan. I learned to pivot away from my retail goals and become more creative on social media to increase our presence on our ecommerce platform.

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Working with manufacturers in Milan also really opened my eyes to the Covid-19 situation early on, before the virus really hit the US. They were completely shut down in March which caused delays in my orders, obviously, but it also allowed me to connect with my manufacturing team on a much more personal and empathetic level in a rare way. It turned a solely business relationship into more of a friendship or a partnership with a deeper understanding. My manufactures in Milan expressed to me that creating my collections as well as those for his other clients really got them through the lockdowns. Because of this, each bag has a deeper meaning to me and I am so just really proud of what we created together. I think that every purse that arrived to me in Denver from Milan was sort of a metaphor for how connected we really are in this world, especially during such a horrific time in history.

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APRIL

We launched (and sold out) of our Dusty Pink Summer Capsule bag! We also launched our card holders in April which was a huge success! 

 

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MAY

I graduated from CU Boulder! I started Vogelle while studying in Milan in 2019 and can not thank everyone enough for all of the support that has come to Vogelle in this challenging year. I had a virtual graduation which was not ideal but my roommates and I made the best of our situation. You may recognize some of these ladies from the Vogelle Instagram ;)

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JUNE

We used our profits to make a difference within our first year of operations. In June & July, we donated over $700 to different organizations in the United States to help combat racial injustices. It was more important this year than ever to listen to those who are frequently overlooked or silenced in our communities. I was grateful to have been in a position to help financially.

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JULY

July was an incredibly exciting month as we launched our Chain Collection, which has been a huge success this year! I wanted to create a flashier version of the Original Bags without changing too much of the original construction. This collection really helped to grow Vogelle as a whole. 

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AUGUST

Vogelle was published in Cherry Creek Fashion and 303 Magazine, which are both huge publications here in Denver, Colorado. I am so thankful to be supported by other creatives in my hometown! 

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BTS with the owner of Cherry Creek Magazine, Esther Lee Leach. This was one of our crossbody prototypes for Spring 2021.

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SEPTEMBER

I had our very first retail trunk show at A Line Boutique in Cherry Creek, Colorado! Once coronavirus hit, I didn't think we would be having any trunk shows for the rest of the year. Having this opportunity at A Line Boutique was a game changer. It's extremely important for me to meet our customers in person and make that relationship. I worked at Nordstrom all throughout college and really value working on the sales floor and connecting with everyone.

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OCTOBER

Vogelle headed to Chicago! We had trunk shows at Style Shack in Highland Park, and at LuxLab in Glencoe. I absolutely love connecting with everyone in person and had a blast meeting everyone at these shows!

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NOVEMBER

We set large goals for our holiday sale… but because of you, we sold over DOUBLE what we were hoping to! We can not thank you enough for making this holiday season such a huge success! 

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DECEMBER

We are on on the cover of the Style section in the December issue of Denver Life Magazine! Our green bag was also featured in the Holiday Gift Guide. Vogelle was also featured in 5280 Magazine online in December, which was a huge goal of mine when I launched the brand. All of our photos were shot by the amazing Amanda Lee! Follow @ethiclee_ on Instagram for amazing photography in the UK :)

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Thank you for being my fellow co-creators

See you in 2021...! 

xx

Laura

 

 

 

 

 

 

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