I almost wrote this inaugural post during the start of the new year, four months ago, when I initially set my New Year's resolution. But I knew that revealing any resolution without actually practicing it was like making a promise that I was not confident I could keep. This year, I wanted to make a conscious effort to be mindful - of how I respond under stress, of having my actions match my words, of being honest with myself.
The first season of PoojaMeraki was both a success and a huge learning experience with lots of joyful and nerve-wrecking moments. Part of the stress came from having our manufacturer be based out of LA, without production in Peru. Initially, I was willing to do the back and forth between coasts because we had found a vendor who believed in us and our mission. But, with time, I realized that it was imperative for me to have someone who was closer, someone who understood our tight timelines and budget, someone who would help us fully realize our goal of producing everything with a local business right here in the US. I also wanted the ability to physically see and work with the production team, improving and streamlining the design process, and ensuring the working conditions were of the highest standards. So, in January of this year, we made the jump to a new vendor, someone who is just half-an-hour away from our home in New Jersey, thus relieving much of the stress that we’d encountered the first time around.
PoojaMeraki is made in small batches and we really needed a partner who would respect and understand that, all while maintaining our focus on producing great quality products. Because we are a new and small brand, while we have to get creative with the way in which we do things, we are very mindful of our non-negotiables, such as quality and attention to details; we hold ourselves to the highest of standards. While the level of stress is often high, the process is immensely enjoyable. As we grow into our second season, I want to remember to be mindful of our growth and stay steadfast in our core values as we make decisions that will have a large ripple effect on both the brand and our customers.
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We are our greatest critics. Self-criticism, we believe, keeps us humble and on our toes. We hold ourselves to very high standards and do our best to achieve them. With PoojaMeraki, those standards extend to every aspect of the brand. From the very beginning, our goal has been to create elevated essentials that are equal parts beautiful and versatile. We aim to manufacture the clothes in small batches and construct them with premium quality fabrics, employing fair labor, all while trying to minimize our impact on the environment. It is a tall order but one that is central to our core values.