We Should Make Girls Hunting Clothes.....

We Should Make Girls Hunting Clothes.....


So, this is how it all started. My daughter was ready to gear up for hunting with her dad for the upcoming season. She had spent several previous seasons target practicing and showing a genuine interest in the sport. My husband asked me to see if I could find a jacket for her online, knowing we had not seen anything for girls in any stores. I knew it was going to be a challenge since women's gear is relatively new on the scene. I did not expect to find out that it just simply didn't exists. Not at all. At least not specifically for a girl. We wanted something that would, obviously, keep her warm. But also, something that she would feel good in, fit her well and look good on her. The jackets that were available in her size were made for boys. And while they checked the 'keeping her warm' box, they absolutely didn't fit well and didn't look good. Not to mention, that while she may be interested in a sport that is predominantly male, a boy she is not. 

After scouring the internet, we realized that our options were either a bulky jacket made to fit a boy or an XS women's jacket that would still be too big. I jokingly said to my husband, "we should be making hunting clothes for girls". After saying it out loud I thought to myself...wait a minute...we should totally make hunting clothes for girls! 

I have always wanted my own business. I admire people like Sara Blakely (creator of Spanx) and the vision she was able to bring to life and grow. Over the years I have thrown around all kinds of ideas. None of them were feasible for this reason or that. But this seemed like something I could do and certainly something that was needed in the market. Later that night I brought up the idea to my husband and daughters. The initial look I got was "here we go again" but that quickly gave way to "let's do it". "Let's do it" was all I needed, and I was locked in. We played around with the idea over dinner that same night and even came up with the name. Lea Avery Gear. The middle names of both of my daughters. 

The next day a google search told me things like, "Start a Clothing Line in 5 Easy Steps". I thought, yep, there it is, no problem, confirmation, I can absolutely do this...easy. It's 17 months later as I write this and we're still not officially in production, I am here to say...there are about a million and one steps and not a one is easy. I am not a fashion designer and have zero experience in designing clothes which added two or three obstacles to every one someone with experience may have had to figure out. Add to that, working to produce a product during a pandemic that created supply chain and workforce issues. 

I (very naively) assumed the easiest step would be finding a manufacturer to produce my items. I thought if I can get past the phases of pattern making, samples, fabric sourcing, redoing patterns and samples, then we would be in the home stretch and nearly ready to launch. Because surely finding someone to just make it wouldn't be hard. Wrong! So wrong. I spent months searching and being rejected by factories across the country. Eventually though finding a company that checked every single box, I mean every single box. Undeterred, but admittedly a little discouraged and beat up, I gave them a call prepared to get a "no" right off the bat like many other calls before. To my surprise they not only didn't tell me "no", but we are finally moving through the production process. They still seem too good to be true.

A few times along this journey I have gotten a couple of what felt like hints that I am onto something and on the right track. One time it was a little girl while we were shopping in a sporting goods store, maybe 10 years old, arguing with her dad about a camo jacket that she wanted but he felt wasn't the right size. "It does fit, we are getting it!" She insisted. She wasn't being bratty she was genuinely excited, in love with it and wanted it. I felt such a confirmation, there is a market for this! Of course, there is a market for this. 

We are so excited and cannot wait to introduce Lea Avery Gear to the market. We hope that girls and young women will be as excited to wear it. And dads, moms, grandpas, and more will be as excited to get it for their hunting partners. 

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