A Script Flipped and Re-flipped—The Journey of My Fashion Brand
“I was born by the river in a little tent.”, okay you’ve got me, that’s an intro line to a Sam Cooke song…but Bacah does come from humble beginnings. It’s been said that there are several things in life that are certain, but what I’ve found, as I‘m sure many of you have as well is that life doesn’t always follow our script. When it came to me launching my brand, my script had many iterations.
In design school I remember two things being drilled into our heads; the first “We are going to teach you to be snobs.”, and the second, “Less is more!”. I have embraced these two concepts, but not in the same way. I truly believe that less is more when it comes to style and that you don’t need a lot to look your best. The snob concept for me is more about having an amazing standard of quality.
Upon graduation from college with a degree in fashion design, I moved to Chicago to begin my illustrious career in the industry. I was convinced that whoever I encountered in my job search would see how incredibly talented I was, after all that’s what a few of my professors told me on more than one occasion…well they didn’t. I remember walking up and down Michigan Avenue wearing a glen plaid worsted wool suit that was a part of my senior collection, going in and out of every high-end boutique I could find to drop off my resume asking to become their next Fashion Director, lack of experience notwithstanding. Everyone I encountered was nice enough, but in hindsight, I think it was that they were in shock more than anything because of my naive boldness. No one took me up on my offer but I did eventually land a job as a fashion merchandiser, and I really liked it.
Just under two years in I decided to move to Boston with every intention of continuing in the industry. Here’s the part where my script got flipped, it didn’t happen. Since I had to eat I took an office job doing what I’d done for many years as a college student. I told myself that this was temporary until something in the industry opened up. Well this temporary lasted for nine years and I was thoroughly miserable because as an artist you’re happiest when you are creating, so I started job-hopping.
A bright spot during that time though, I’d gotten married to my best friend. He knew I wasn’t doing what I wanted and one day said to me “Babe, if you can’t be a fashion designer what else would you like to do? I thought about it and decided to go back to school for graphic design, and armed with a new design direction I moved on with my life. I was happily married and we eventually had two beautiful daughters, but fashion, to definitely be cliché, was my passion and always tugged at my heart. Chris my husband, did I mention that he was an artist too, once again stepped in and in a profound way encouraged me to flip my script and pursue my dream.
I asked if he’d please convert our spider-ridden garage into a studio, which he was more than happy to do…and here is where my journey began. How I landed on the name Bacah is a story for next time.
August 17, 2020 | Anita Costello