Jovana Mirabile: New York based designer specializing in fashion print and embellishment. With over 7 years of industry experience, Jovana has designed for high profile designers and brands in both the US and UK.
Did you or your partners have a business plan when you started your business?
No, I did not have a “formal” business plan, but I definitely had a plan of action. My main focus when starting my business was to market myself as a textile designer and partner with existing fashion houses. I was not trying to sell a product. My goal was to gain clients and build a good reputation, making contacts throughout the industry and down the road establishing myself as a brand. But, from the start I knew it was important to begin to set the groundwork for a brand. So, I chose to sell iPhone covers featuring my own textile prints. This was an easy product for me to maintain while working for clients. The plan is to have my own brand established within 5 years. When I eventually launch my brand, I will definitely have a business plan.
Do you think business plans are necessary for entrepreneurship?
Yes, I think they are a very important exercise for the entrepreneur to understand the environment in which there business will operate. However, they must understand that business plans will change! They are a great starting point and a great way to develop and learn about what the core of your business is all about, but you must be flexible. Circumstances will change, and new ideas will evolve, especially in the creative field!
What three pieces of advice can you offer developing arts entrepreneurs?
Be flexible, dream big, and remember it isn’t about the money. Do it for the passion!
Interview by Alex Mirabile, student in Developing an Arts Venture Plan, Arts Entrepreneurship at Meadows School of the Arts, SMU.