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Episode 20 of 43

020: Katie Deming: Seeing the ”unseen” and fusing functionality with aesthetics.

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"Sometimes we are positioned to see a need that no one else is seeing" - these are the words of oncologist Katie Deming MD who turned her hand at fashion entrepreneurship in order to solve an unmet need of her clients.

After years of advising her patients to not wear a bra after radiation treatment for breast cancer, she started coming up with bra hacks to help them feel comfortable post-treatment and still feel and look well.

But there is only so long you can jump from hack to hack until you reach the point where you think you can find a long-er term fix. This is what prompted Katie to design and manufacture her own sensitive skin bra.

Episode Notes:
Listen to this riveting conversation and discover:

How Katie discovered a gap in the market and found herself in the perfect place to launch her own product range?

What were the first steps she took to get started?

The unusual route to market she took and how that worked out for her;

How she runs her brand while continuing to be a full-time practicing oncologist consultant;

Her manufacturing ups and downs and lessons she's learned so far.

Key Takeaways:

"The whole process of bra shopping left me sick." There is a whole segment of men and women who are ignored by both the fashion and medical industries.  "It's important to have things that function well, but it is important to have things be aesthetically pleasing as well."


"Your brand is everything" No matter how great your product is and even if patented, anything can be copied and there is little to no recourse for small brands. Building a solid recognizable brand is what ensures long-term business success. 


"If you don't have problems, you don't have production" No matter how small or large, how financially stable and secure a business can be - manufacturing is a delicate balancing act where anything at any point can go wrong. Employing commercial thinking and remaining firm but practical is the only way to keep going forward. 


Running out of stock is a good problem to have unless you have a time-sensitive problem. In which case, your customers, no matter how loyal, move their business to where there is product availability. 


Shop Katie's brand MakeMerry 

Connect with Katie on Instagram

Business Tools & Resources:

Fashion Manufacturing Mastery online course
Strategic Brand Positioning Program

About the host:

Dessy is the founder of Fashion Insiders & Co - an online platform supporting fashion and creative entrepreneurs who are in the process of launching and growing purpose-driven brands.

Contact Method:
Fashion Insiders & Co
official website:
Instagram: @fashioninsidersco

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