53: Factory45’s Shannon Whitehead on Walking Away from Success at the Right Time to Embrace What You’re Really Meant to Do


Not sure if what I’m about to say adds credence to the slow march of singularity towards womankind, but dude, my virtual digital startup crush on what today’s guest has done is real. Realer than real. It’s kind of like way back in EP 9 when I said that Liza Kindred’s Third Wave Fashion movement left me thinking, damn, I wish I had done that. But just as I could not have done what Liza and her team have done for fashtech, I could not have done what Shannon Whitehead is making happen over at Factory45, an online accelerator program that takes idea-stage fashion entrepreneurs through the steps they need to successfully launch an apparel product. That’s because Shannon brings a unique and ultra-valuable set of knowledge to the remote learning table through her program. You see, this wasn’t Shannon’s first attempt at running a company. Her previous company, well, it was only the most successful fashion kickstarter campaign in herstory when it mic-dropped onto the scene with a travel-friendly garment called the Versalette. She and her business partner (who now runs the clothing company Seamly) met with rapid success and the kinds of opportunities most startups dream of landing in their first year (speaking at SXSW! Traveling like crazy! Angel investors! Quadrupling their production run!). But something didn’t feel right. The stress and a strained friendship that you can read all about here forced them to reevaluate. For Shannon, that meant changing directions and bringing her experience to emerging fashion brands hoping to achieve the very same kind of results she’d found. The upshot? Success, in Shannon’s case, wasn’t the perfect answer. There was a different path, and as you’ll hear her say on the show, the one she’s on right now feels right. Like really right.

This episode brought to you with support from the FEST-ive folks at Betabrand. Save 20% off when you shop and use code SPIRIT20. But wait, there’s more below!



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Listen to Shannon’s journey from life as a 20-something world traveler into fashion startup adventurer and, now, a much happier, healthier business strategist helping more USA-made brands come to market and thrive. Plus, her top tips for fashion businesses – the kind of info and advice you’d normally need to enroll in Factory45 to get, right here on this week’s show.


Factory45: www.factory45.co

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/factory45.co

Twitter: @factory45co , @shannlw

Instagram: @factory45co


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T-shirt motto: Fast Fashion Kills. Ask Me Why.

Find more episodes featuring women at the forefront of FEST online at www.Spiritof608.com.



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