Ducks (and swans) were in London!
But not just those ducks….
Weeeeeee, we went for a trade show in London. We were invited to Pure London trade show and we were debating whether we should go. In pure business sense, we were not ready to enter the London market. We are already there on a small scale (dUCkies in London woot woot!!) but to actually distribute there and to open a store there, we would have to know A LOT MORE about the market. It’s not just about short-lived fame and shortcuts doing a stockist channel there, dUCk as you know is never like that. But if I want to enter a new market, I would have a lot of things to consider and think properly where I should channel my focus.
So this trip was solely to learn. I wanted to give my team a sense of excitement of the possibility of entering a new market, I wanted them to see if there is even a potential for dUCk there, I wanted them to speak to people, ask questions and get a sense of the market, I wanted them to research the existing brands there and see how we can add value to it. I told them no expectations please, this is a learning trip to open all our eyes.
Clothes were on the ground floor. Accessories were on the first floor, so we were upstairs. And look what a great spot they gave us!!!!
This is when you stand in the middle of Pure London. You can see the dUCk sign so clearly! I saw this first as I entered the hall for setup on the night, and I think my heart pumped so fast out of love and sheer joy. I felt so proud and happy, Masyaallah!
And this was the view we had. Behind this dUCk box is the fashion show area where all the press and people gathered for activities so it was really awesome.
Overall, we had 43 interested buyers for dUCk, each representing either a multilabel store or an e-commerce website and what’s interesting was that they came from different countries. I told my team don’t rush into anything yet, just research each one a bit more to see if they’re suitable to dUCk. Sadly, I didn’t find many that fit our branding and how we want to position our brand. We also have to decide how we want to position dUCk there, is it premium or not, is it purely Muslimah (which is going to be really niche) or not, is it exclusive or not. Strengthen our brand first, I told the team, before we even think about expanding. We don’t have to do things just because of external pressure or the trend seems to show everyone is going there. I’m going to take my time on this, but it’s really nice to learn the market there, and that there is potential for dUCk in London. We will be there one day when we are ready, Insyaallah.
I was wearing a few hats here. My dUCk hat, speaking to interested buyers. My FashionValet hat, scouting the other brands to see if they’d be suitable for FV. And my reality show hat because we filmed this whole thing for an episode of Love, Vivy.
Another reason why I was excited for London was for the dUCkies gathering at Fortnum & Masons. This place is soooo posh, I’ve only dined there once before so I was really excited with this venue as we host our dearest dUCkies there. We got a nice private room and we set up tables with everything pretty; purple macarons, a personal note from D who wasn’t there, our guests’ names, tea sets, tea… it was so beautiful to me.
We played games, we had quizzes, we introduced ourselves, we took pictures. It was just like hanging out with friends, and that’s actually exactly what it was supposed to be. I felt so close to the girls here even though I only know them from Instagram and some were students so I could relate to my time being in their shoes 8 years ago. It wasn’t about selling, it wasn’t about promoting anything, it was literally such a refreshing breather just sincerely getting to know our dUCkies in person. To more gatherings like these!
While I was there, I also got to hang out with new friends and old friends.
With famous hijabis in London
With an ok-la-famous hijabi in London.
Bahahahaha! Mimak also came to London and managed to come for the dUCkies event so I was so happy and excited. Finally we are in London together.
If only Toots was here too. But we pretended she was between us in this photo.
Btw, she started a YouTube channel of super cool vlogs. Give her some love here and watch her videos. She burped in one of them. I almost canceled this friendship.
And you all know Stella of course, my bestest and only friend in LSE haha. In case you’re wondering, she is know living in London, going to marry some matsaleh haha and she started her own sports line here.
And of course our baby brother Idzuan. He’s not a baby anymore and it sucks. :((((
It was really really cold in London and I was so thankful that I wear the hijab because my ears and neck were never cold. Haha. Vs Dean who kept complaining and had to buy a Burberry scarf to save his life. It had to be Burberry, of course. *rolls eyes*
Honestly, the best part of this whole trip was this.
The fact that I get hugged by this guy through all our ups and downs in cold and hot.
I’ve been way too appreciative of Dean lately, it’s pukeworthy isn’t it? Haha. Enough of this emotional wife phase sheesshhhh. I need to get my cool wife mojo back soon.
As we bid farewell to London, its beautiful flowers, parks, and let my little U dUCk rest after days of hard work, I will always treasure all the new things I’ve learned, new people I’ve met and the old memories I got to relive with Dean from our time in London a decade ago.
Watch it all soon on Love, Vivy! Hope you’ve been catching all the episodes.
Every Monday 9pm on Astro Ria!