June 21, 2024

Thrive Insider

Exclusive stories of successful entrepreneurs

Danielle Sady, founder Everyday Lingerie Co

Who are you and what business did you start?

Danielle Sady, I started my brand Australian Made of Bamboo underwear called Everyday Lingerie Co in 2019.

What’s your backstory and how did you come up with the idea?

I started being around business owners from a young age. Both my parents had their own businesses and from the age of 8 I loved nothing more than spending the day working with the receptionist answering the phone at my dad’s car dealerships. The hustle and bustle of the business was something I knew I wanted to be part of. I later went on to work in his business for 5 years along with many other industries including bedding & furniture, FMCG, pharmaceuticals and fashion. I wanted to ensure I was also challenged in every role and changing industries allowed me to get different perspectives on business and how the same principles applied but needed to be adapted to the industry.
It was an evening in 2012 after another failed shopping attempt for everyday underwear that saw me sitting at my dining table when the idea hit me. If I could not find underwear that offered me the comfort, support and flexibility I was after I would create my own.

Initially I thought it would be a range focused towards size 14 +, but when I started asking questions with close friends, family and co workers I realized that most of the women (ranging in size from 6 – 24) in my life were also sacrificing some of their requirements when underwear shopping and struggling to find “the one”. I then began researching this even more to see what other women wanted. The findings were the same. Most went up a size or 2 when purchasing because their products didn’t sit high enough. They sacrificed looks in many cases to get comfort. I knew it was time for me to design that. The underwear that offered it all; comfort, support, breathability and looked great on.

Describe the process of launching the business.

I was extremely naïve in my initial plans to launch thinking I came up with a great idea, find someone to make it bring some branding with it and bang a brand would be born and products flying off the shelves. Instead the process was eye opening. Whilst I had ample business knowledge I did not fully understand how to build a launch. i continued to work full time in demanding roles up until November 2017 so it was hard to get everything I really needed to do until I focused on it full time. I started with the products and worked with a pattern maker to help bring my designs to life. This took around 2 years. The brief and boyleg were easier than the G String.

The G string is quite complex and I did not understand this until I started down this path. I was told by a mentor very early on to work with people who’s skills are my weaknesses, so I set about looking for a branding expert to help create the look and feel and we even updated the name to what it is today. The hardest part of getting the brand launched was really the production. The dream was to be an Australian made brand, but I wasn’t able to find a maker locally so we headed overseas. From memory we reviewed around 20 factories. The struggle we found was we wanted to ensure that we worked with an ethical factory where the workers had rights and were treated exceptionally well. We knew this would educe margins, but it was more important that our brand ethos and values were meet the entire way down the supply chain and that started with garment makers. We held our first launch in on August 29th 2019.

Unfortunately around March of 2020 just as a global pandemic started surfacing we sold out of stock and the factory we were working with wasn’t producing the quality garments we could stand behind so I made the difficult decision to advise everyone that we had sold out. I didn’t know if we would even be able to relaunch we had NO supply chain. Thankfully I didn’t give up and took everything I had learnt and reached out to my network and worked harder than I ever had before trying to develop a new supply chain for my brand. It dawned on me, that this was the perfect time to take on the feedback we had received from customers with phase 1 and update the designs and materials for added comfort.

In early 2021 I meet a wonderful business owner who was local in Melbourne who owned an established fabric mill who took me under his wing and helped me create the premium quality bamboo fabric our range is all about, next we found a Melbourne business whose overseas factory could create the custom waist trim the brand is known for, and finally the missing piece a garment maker. By late May 2021 ELC launched for a second time, this time however was even better a bamboo comfortable, supportive and breathable range of everyday underwear that is Australian Made.

Since launch, what has worked to attract and retain customers?

Social Media would be our biggest platform to attract customer, we have used paid advertising to assist with brand awareness, but our biggest retainer of customers is the fact that we are 100% photoshop free brand and offer customers an opportunity to see women in their clothing size when they are shopping online.
We really wanted to showcase how amazing and perfectly imperfect we all are, so all the women we use in our marketing are everyday women who joined us through an open call and all images of the women are untouched. We do alter the backgrounds (tone or colour) to ensure that they work for our website and marketing.

How are you doing today and what does the future look like?

Today we are tracking well. Business has been challenging for everyone in the face of a pandemic. All our Wholesale customer have been closed, but thankfully we have been able to continue to trade online and fulfill orders. The future is full of lots and lots of colour! We are working with another Australian business called Sunny Daisy Tie Dye in Victoria and Amelia the owner is amazing. We share similar values so its amazing to work with a team who loves creating our custom tie dye pieces and this is only increasing along with our range.

Through starting the business, have you learned anything particularly helpful or advantageous?

I have learned so much from starting a business, there is too much to mention however the best piece of advice I received was to hire people who excelled in the areas that are my weaknesses. That is exactly what I did in particular for my branding to all come together and my day to day marketing. This way I was able to focus my attention on what I am good at and are passionate about. I have learned also to love my weaknesses. What I mean by this is I have spent the time getting educated and learning about the areas I would previously run from, to ensure I have more understanding when talking with people who manage this and can add value with the input I contribute also.

What platform/tools do you use for your business?

We use Shopify for our online store and we are active across; Instagram, Facebook, Google, Pinterest, and Linked In, we do have a handle on Twitter but haven’t used this much at all.

What have been the most influential books, podcasts, or other resources?

Personally I always read The Secret by Rhonda Byrne, Lucky B by Denise Duffield-Thomas. Podcast; Retail Oasis, Mind of George Podcast and The Mindset Mentor with Rob Dial

Advice for other entrepreneurs who want to get started or are just starting out?

Do the ground work first, start at the beginning and build a solid foundation with plans, don’t skip steps. Then start actioning it all, it will be the best journey be prepared for the ride and enjoy it!

Where can we go to learn more?

Podcasts, networking groups, we are super blessed to have the tech world we have at our finger tips so its never been easier to look up answers and network with people form all around the globe. You can learn as much as you want, there are no limits.