Friday, August 17, 2007

CHia Handbags & Accessories

For June Cheng, fashion is in her blood. June, the owner and designer behind CHia, was born in Taiwan to a family of jewelers. Her grandmother was not only a jewelry designer, but an avid collector of vintage handbags. From early on, June had learned to appreciate designing details through sketching handbags.

She was always amazed at watching her grandmother execute her sketches into individual pieces of art. As her grandmother taught June, “Do not be afraid of playing with colors and materials.” She keeps this philosophy in designing for CHia, her line of sophisticated and modern handbags.

“After getting my MBA in Marketing, I’d started working as a business analyst for several years. My business background has always empowered me in many ways. I never feel I’d abandoned my business profession.”

“After working several years as a business analyst, I’d started asking myself if that was the life I desired for the next ten years. At that very moment, I’d picked up my pencils and started sketching again just like my grand mom did. In order to make my dreams into reality; I had spent three years in traveling and searching for unique materials to enrich my designs.”

CHia’s Typical Customer
“I always have a perfect vision in my mind for CHia, “chic and superb”.”

CHia handbag was created to be modern, sophisticated and yet playful with a twist of European flair. Most of all, CHia reflects my life passion. It is the handbag line designed for today’s professional woman who knows how to make a fashion statement and appreciates superior quality.”

Being the Boss
“I have a couple of employees working for me right now. It was not easy to find the first employee. I’d contacted F.I.T. [Fashion Institute of Technology] career office for candidates. I also asked my friends for referrals. I guess it was difficult for me to set the boundaries between being a boss to my dear friend's older sister. Unfortunately fashion industry is all about the deadlines. Yes, we all look sophisticated to our customers. But, working in fashion is just not as glamorous as people think. There are no easy jobs on this planet. We all have to work hard to earn people’s trust and respect.”

“I do have contractors who make our handbags for us. Our office is just a design house. I’d visited many tradeshows and asked for referrals. It’s all about meeting new people and getting connected.”

Low-Cost Advertising
“I try to update information about CHia through Facebook.”

Encountering Business Challenges
“There were many suppliers who didn’t want to deal with start up designers. I never gave up on finding my sources. I’d traveled to different countries to find unique materials for my designs. There were many contactors who just wanted to take advantages of new designers. It was difficult to negotiate. You have to shop around. I’d done so much research before I jumped into any decisions.”

“[It is also a challenge] getting people to know about me and CHia. In order for them to purchase my merchandise,I had to keep showing them my different collections. And keep my words on the delivery dates.”

“Self fulfillment is the reason that motivates me, even though there are many challenges and difficulties I have to face everyday. I love what I’m doing.”

Recommended Business Resources

Customers as Mentors
“Many of my customers are my mentors. I always cherish every single comment from my customers. That is just the way how we improve ourselves in this industry.”

Words of Advice-Never Give Up
“Never give up and do not be afraid of making mistakes. There is always something we could learn from making a mistake. That is the way we can improve ourselves and make a better decision next time. Try to talk to as many people as you can. I think being humble and open minded will be the key to future success.”


June Cheng
CHia Handbags

1 comment:

Oksana said...

Very beautiful handbags, though my favourite are Gucci handbags!