1. Please tell us about your brand. Who are the key players?
We are REIGN&GRAY creators of The Skarf, a reversible scarf that attaches behind the neck using 2 leather-enclosed magnets. REIGN&GRAY is owned and operated by Kim DeVries & Michelle Demman.
2. What makes your scarves unique?
Conventional scarves tend to come with tutorials on “100 ways to wear or wrap your scarf” leaving most consumers both frustrated and flustered. Our belief is “life is complicated enough, looking fabulous shouldn’t be”. Being avid scarf lovers, we recognized this common problem and came up with a solution! As well We took our vision one step further and designed a reversible scarf combining two looks in one!
3. Where is your brand based?
REIGN&GRAY is a Canadian based company in Kelowna, BC. We believe that scarves are universal. Being geographically located where it is cold over six months a year presents an advantage. That being said, we have had a great deal of interest in countries such as Dubai & Thailand where the climate may be hot, but the malls and restaurants are heavily air-conditioned! This quick, constant temperature shift means people are carrying shawls, sweaters or The Skarf!
4. When was REIGN&GRAY developed and formed?
REIGN&GRAY was conceptualized in 2014 and registered as a business in 2015. We launched a Kickstarter Campaign in Fall 2015 with a targeted goal to crowd fund $15,000. We raised $30,000 in 38 days! Currently, we are fulfilling pre-orders from Kickstarter and then focusing on the launch of our online store launch.
5. How did the idea for The Skarf develop?
This idea developed from a conversation between 2 lifelong friends over coffee! One had the vision and one had the push to implement the idea!
Together we spent a year refining both the physical and logistical aspects of The Skarf.
6. What inspired you to pursue a business in the fashion industry?
For both of us, our love of fashion has outweighed our in-depth knowledge of the industry. Our goal is to solve a problem by introducing The Scarf to the fashion industry. As avid scarf lovers, we were frustrated with the time it took to wrap, flap, twist and tug our scarves, only to arrive at our destination – unwrapping it all! Realizing there MUST be a better way, we created a solution and a fashion game changer. To be honest, our goal was to pursure problem solving in a very fashionable way!
7. What’s the biggest highlight of your career to date? Why?
A highlight was seeing our Kickstarter goal of $15,000 being doubled in such a short amount of time. That meant that our idea was validated! People like our fashionable solution! Ha!ha! It validated those late night meetings, stressing over “should we or shouldn’t we?” I think any artist or entrepreneur would tell you that there is a level of vulnerability mixed into it all. We compare this process to having a baby and then going “ta da world, our idea has been born!” As an artist, you want the “ooooooOOhs and aaaaahhH’s” not a room full of silence or the Seinfeld “well she has personality!” When we doubled our goal, it gave us the green light that our idea was viable.
8. What’s your biggest career mistake to date?
Not to sound cliche, but to be honest we think “mistakes” are part of the process. Brene Brown talks about being brave and that in order to live authentic and brave lives we risk failure or mistakes! There have been moments where we made a choice on an aspect of The Skarf and in the end it may not have had the desired result, but we tried. We risked, we tried & most importantly we learned from the experiences. If we view any and every hiccup as huge mistakes or failures, then on a business or personal level are we really succeeding?
9. As entreprenuers, what are your key strengths?
Our key strengths are communication, an open approach to business highs and lows and a unique product.
10. Where you get your fabrics from?
Currently we source both our fabrics and manufacturing in Thailand. We are working with a business in Thailand, which serves women who have come from the northeast of Thailand looking for work. This sewing business was established in 2001, initially to keep young children with their mother’s (instead of sending them to their villages to be raised by grandparents) and to supplement family incomes. They believe in supporting the whole family of the women who sew and being just and fair in how they do business. By supporting REIGN&GRAY you are also supporting these women as they continue their life story, half a world away.
11. What sets The Skarf apart from its competitors?
The Skarf is unique in that we make you look good & save time. There is no need to re-twist, wrap around your hair or watch a YouTube tutorial on how to use it. Pick, Click and go. Oh and did we mention it is reversible? Spill that Merlot or Mayo & flip it around – we’ve got you covered, literally!
12. Where do you see your career going in the next 5 years?
Well, we would love to see REIGN&GRAY thriving and succeeding both online and in stores. We have both short and long term dreams & goals! We would love to see The Skarf around the necks of every man, woman and child on the planet.
Text Editor, L.T. Clayton