Looking for fabulous bridesmaid dresses or a cute look for your sorority rush parties? Frill may be your dream come true!
With the budget of college students, a little luck, and unsurpassed determination, Sharon Bui and Kate Steadman founded the custom-clothing company centered on philanthropy, Frill. Bui and Steadman have always had an eye for fashion and knew that their careers were destined to be full of fabric choices and trendsetting. However, starting a business to produce custom outfits for sorority recruitment was a faint notion that neither woman thought would actually be possible.
Bui and Steadman reached out to the community for advice, and decided to dive head-first into launching their own business despite being full-time students. “No time like the present,” seems to have become a motto for these headstrong women as they have tackled every obstacle with energy and grace, while always considering the customer’s needs first. As students themselves, the pair has made it a point to hire within the student community, finding motivated talent and helping to jumpstart careers. Most importantly, Bui and Steadman have made it their mission to have a personal connection with each customer.
Bui stated, “I almost cried when our first chapter told us how much they enjoyed the dresses. It was so gratifying to make a difference in their chapter.” Sorority recruitment relies on creating a cohesive look to show off a chapter’s personality to potential new members. A sorority woman herself, Bui saw the struggle that chapters had to find cute, flattering outfits that fit a limited budget. Steadman wanted to be sure to hold her business at a high standard, while finding a way to give back to the community. Together, they created Frill!
I had the opportunity to chat with Frill’s founders last week. Here is what they had to say about their fabulous new venture.
Who is the Frill customer? What group are you targeting?
The Frill customer is a woman between the ages of 18-40. For our sorority division, our target market is college girls, ages 18-24. For our bridal division, our target market is engaged women ages 18-40.
How did you come up with the idea for this company?
I was tired of be required to buy expensive and unflattering recruitment clothing every year. As a consumer, I wanted recruitment clothing to be more affordable, stylish and flattering. We saw the need within the market and we knew each other’s strengths. Kate had the production know-how and I had the sorority and marketing know-how. So, together, we started Frill!
What made you incorporate philanthropy into your plans?
Kate had cancer as a child and we feel that it’s important to give back to our community. The sorority chapters we work with are very passionate about the philanthropies to which they they donate. So, it was extremely important to us to incorporate a philanthropic aspect into our company. When girls wear Frill, it not only gives them something to talk about to rushees, it also gives back to their beloved charities.
Which charities do you personally support? Why?
Kate and I both personally support Make-A-Wish. Kate was a Make-A-Wish child and got to go to Disney World as her wish! My sorority in college supported Make-A-Wish and as such, I was able to help grant a child’s wish! (One little girl wished to be in a fashion show, and my sorority hosted one just so she could be a part of it.) Granting a wish changed my life!
What void in the fashion market do you hope to fill?
We hope to fill the Greek niche market void. Big box companies don’t cater directly to sororities and we want the sororities to have a company to turn to for fashionable recruitment designs.
Where can customers purchase your dresses?
Customers can currently purchase Frill online at www.frillclothing.com. We will be in bridal boutiques across the country starting January 2015!
How can customers connect with you via social media?
We are on Tumblr, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram! Our handle is @frillclothing.