Della & Vans: “Don’t be afraid to ask”
APiF: Please introduce your label in 1-2 sentences
Della: Della is a socially responsible fashion line that works to bring ethical, African-made products to the forefront of the U.S. market. We work to bridge African craftsmanship and traditional textiles with modern, western styles. All of our employees receive fair wages, health care, social security benefits, literacy courses and money management training.
APiF: What makes Della unique?
Della: Both our mission and our products make us unique. A lot of fashion labels use African fabric without having the product made in Africa. Also, I consider our products more fashion-forward due to the fact that we really look towards seasonal trends and work to show people that African prints can be worn at any occasion.
APiF: Vans X Della – what can we expect and when?
Della: Well, 2014 is very exciting for us. This month we launched a 6 shoe collection with Vans, all made with batik handmade by our team in Ghana. The shoes are available at www.vans.com/della and in stores nationwide.
APiF: Apple, Urban Outfitters, now Vans – what is next?
Della: That’s a great question! My main focus is making sure we can maintain job security for our entire team and continue to grow. Right now we’re focused on future projects with Vans and Urban Outfitters, there’s a few more exciting projects in the works, but I can’t reveal that quite yet…
APiF: Any tips for other labels/social enterprises that would like to connect with big brands?
Della: Yes, don’t be afraid to ask. Everything starts from an idea, so don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and reach out to people. Also, always be persistent. Don’t be afraid of rejection, you’ll never know unless you try.