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Conversations with Gabrielle Hall

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gabrielle Hall.

Hi Gabrielle, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
As a child, I always had a passion for fashion. I remember watching Project Runway and America’s Next Top Model thinking “I want that”. I always had an aspiration to be a model and fashion designer in the future. Starting out, I focused my talents on creating art, short stories, and poetry. I started modeling at a young age, then fashion followed shortly after. I didn’t have any experience when I was young, so I worked with what I had until I was finally taught how to use a machine. I would glue fabrics and trim together, cut a hole in fabric to make a skirt… anything that allowed me to say I was “creating”, I did that. One day, I was on the way to the grocery store with my dad and he goes “what happened to you wanted your own fashion business?” and I said “well, I still want that, but I fear I’m not good enough so I didn’t pursue it” he replied “if that’s what you want to do, you do it and don’t worry about that”. From that moment, I thought of names to describe being “misunderstood” because I feel like I’ve been misunderstood my whole life. I didn’t have many friends in school because I got bullied, so I used to draw or turn my experiences into short fictional stories to express myself. Arcane means to be “understood by a few”. Only a few will understand you and what you do, but what matters is that you keep doing it and enjoy what your doing. I create for myself and inspire others to be themselves.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
One of my biggest struggles as an entrepreneur has been finances. As a small business owner, we lack the resources needed to fully carry out functions to help our business flourish. There’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes such as: creating content, packaging, shipping, finding vendors, etc. Which all involves time and money each time. Also, another challenge is recognition. When customers and influencers don’t credit small businesses or designers, it makes it harder for us to get recognized and expand.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I do many things. I learned not to limit myself because then you’re putting yourself in a box. I believe the sky is not the limit. Think bigger, think outside the box. I’m most known for designing, but I also make organic cosmetics and hair care, which is also another popular item from my brand. I’ve taken classes from professional cosmetic chemists and received a certification in makeup artistry. In addition, I’ve done natural hairstyles on clients and taken cosmetology classes to learn more about hair care and hair types. The unique thing about my brand is everything is handmade in some way. I hand paint a lot of my items such as: hats, bags, and paintings. All the jewelry I offer is made from hand, so I guess I use my hands a lot. I feel like hand-making adds a personal touch. The Monarch Mania Hoodies were completely handmade and customized to the customer’s color preference. They were hand-painted on the front, back, and the hood… with sewn butterflies on the hood and cut sleeves. The grommets were hand placed and the ties were laced up individually. This makes customers feel special because each hoodie is unique in its own way, and they know it took time to care for it and make it for them. That is why I do what I do. Not many people buy items that are custom made, most are mass-produced.

Any advice for finding a mentor or networking in general?
Personally, I recommend finding at least one friend or person who shows supports no matter what. For me, that person is my father. He supports me through everything I do, especially my brand. Crowning Queens Mentoring @crowningqueensmentoring has a great mentoring program for young businesswomen aspiring to start their own business or looking for extra assistance. I’ve been given the opportunity to meet many ladies of all ages through CQ from Philadelphia, Alabama, and other areas. Jaya is an inspiration to many and a great mentor.

Pricing:

  • Hair Oils $12
  • Hats $30
  • Paintings $7
  • Bracelets & Accessories $4-$20
  • T-shirts $15

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Photographers: @guythephotographer @d.lovestudios @lwky__fatzz

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