In episode 49, Erika Neumayer Ehrat shares how she’s built a niche business – Rare Dirndl – creating fashion-forward styles that still honor traditions to help American women celebrate German culture.
“I started Rare Dirndl in 2010 because, as an active member of the German community in Chicago, I was so disappointed to see that Germany’s dirndl designs were lightyears ahead of the designs coming out of the US. So, I decided to change that! Today we are a small team of women dedicated to bringing the world high-quality & fashion-forward dirndls, blouses, bloomers, and accessories.”
In this episode, you’ll learn:
- The market gap Erika noticed in the US Dirndl market
- How Erika built a business around such a small niche
- What makes Rare Dirndls so rare
- How Erika connects with her heritage through clothing
- Places to wear a dirndl other than Octoberfest
- How to know it is time to stop making everything yourself in your business
- How Erika got started working with a factory instead of making everything herself
- What outsourcing did for Erika’s business and lifestyle
- The line between wearing cultural dress in your own personal style and cultural appropriation – and how Rare Dirndl respects the cultural intent.
- How Erika manages the seasonality of cash flow and sales in her business
People and resources mentioned in this episode:
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