Yorktown Hts, NY
My name is Melinda, and I am a native New Yorker and first generation American. I learned how to sew as a child, taught by both my grandmothers, who were working in clothing factories when they came to the US as single mothers. I was very close with my paternal grandmother, and she taught me pattern making, cutting and sewing. I took these skills with me into the world, which helped me to secure my first fashion internship as a sample maker. From there, I worked with several amazing designers, including the great Norma Kamali. Upon leaving the Production Manager position there, I launched Mirame.
Since founding Mirame in 2011, I have completed comprehensive business training with programs such as WEDC, DENYC, and the Workshop at Macys’, a prestigious pitch competition for Women/Minority Owned Businesses.
Mirame is a collection of Beach to Bistro swim and activewear founded in 2011. The brand focuses on one piece silhouettes that cover a woman up while still allowing her to feel sexy. The Mirame customer is a professional woman between the ages of 25-49.
My love for swimwear began when I moved to Hawaii at the age of 19. I had taken a break from college and arrived on Oahu with a suitcase and sewing machine. Without a way to earn money, I began making bikinis and selling them on the beach. With amazing feedback, I decided to return to the mainland and attend FIT. When I found myself in charge of swimwear manufacturing at Norma Kamali, I knew it was a sign to return to this love. Thus Mirame was born.
The biggest challenge Mirame faces is reaching our consumers. Although our sales have doubled each year, having a broader inventory base would allow us to participate in more events, online sites, and increase our sales.
Mirame garments are proudly manufactured in New York, utilizing predominantly locally sourced and reclaimed materials. We are on our way to sourcing 100% of our fabrics from reclaimed sources, and 100% of our trims from USA-made sources.
This is our second Kiva loan!!! We have 3-4 events planned per month from April-September. We have almost completely sold out of the inventory that we produced through our last Kiva loan. This loan will help us produce 4 new styles in our NY factories. We are also joining 3-4 new direct to consumer drop ship sites, which we will also need inventory for.
We plan to produce new name plates for our garments, which will cost $600. We also plan to produce 200 pieces of our 2 core styles, which will cost $3800 to cut/sew/package. The remaining 2 styles we will make about 50-75 pieces each of, which will cost another $3500. Our margin on our one pieces is about 75% percent, and 62% on our bikinis. Once we sell through, we estimate bringing in close to $30,000. Our goal this year is to grow sales by 150%, breaking over the 25k mark, and this loan would allow us to do so.
This loan will positively affect our family in several ways. We will have an increase in supplemental income. In addition, I will be taking my daughter to some of these events, teaching her about work ethic, and the ability to follow your dreams.