Hang Accessories Interview with SD Voyager.
Hi Renee, can you start by introducing yourself? We'd love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
I'm a San Diego native who has always loved the diversity of the Southern California community, so it's no surprise that my journey led me back here after attending UC Berkeley and a nearly decade-long career in advertising.
While taking a sabbatical from my career, I traveled to Europe and became interested in the products that women were using while on the go. This inspired me to create Hang Accessories. My first product - an innovative reinvention of the purse hanger - was a huge success that kept our business growing throughout the recession. The idea of combining style with functionality was the conception point of Hang Accessories and remains the foundation of everything we do. After many business trips (and vacation trips too), I felt that travel bags and accessories did not speak to the female consumer. The bags that were available were either functional but too masculine, or stylish but lacking the features and functionality that women need when traveling for work or fun. The reimagining of the travel bag seemed like a natural progression for my company because I've always loved to travel. We started with beautiful carry-on rolling bags that were great for work and travel, followed by coordinating slide over totes and personal tech essentials that offer women the organization they need while inspiring their day-to-day with playful prints and beautiful details.
Would you say it's been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you've faced along the way?
Let's be real-what isn't challenging when you're a small business? Just starting was the first big hurdle. Fortunately, I had a father who was an entrepreneur and told it like it was - either start and fail or do something else. He was right of course - it's impossible to avoid making mistakes when you're starting something new. But those daily challenges forced me to push my boundaries, grow from the rejection and celebrate the victories, and ultimately inspired me to grow my business in new ways every day.
My decision to leave a stable advertising job and start a business was not comfortable. No moment will ever be the perfect one. The best thing you can do is follow your passion and follow it hard when it calls you, because that is what will keep you afloat. You can learn Facebook Marketing strategy, the ins-and-outs of manufacturing and even how to use a forklift (yes, you may need to at some point), but passion for your career and the hard, persistent work you put into it can never be learned.
3 Piece Packing Cube Set in Leopard Print
We've been impressed with Hang Accessories, but for folks who might not be as familiar, what can you share with them about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Hang Accessories is a smart, chic and unique fashion accessories and travel brand that makes products for the modern woman. We are a woman-owned and operated business that aims to support the many roles women take on in their daily lives while ensuring that they do everything in style. We are a travel brand to our core, but we're also expanding into other areas, including self-care and personal tech items that are as fashionable as they are functional.
At Hang, we focus on thinking through how we and our customers use our products in daily life. Recently, we've really been enjoying our collection of self-care products - maybe it's just the pandemic talking, but we feel like everyone could use a little more self-care in their lives right now! We're loving our new foldable travel slippers - perfectly luxe and comfortable for your home office too! - and our ultra-soft satin pillowcases for a beautiful night's sleep. When we design, it's not about just one product, but telling a story through a collection of products that also make great gifts.
What matters most to you? Why?
We care about solving everyday problems in a smart and fashionable way. For me personally, constant education is paramount to my growth and success. I strive to keep traveling and enriching myself with inspiring experiences that will translate into exciting new products for my brand. In a small company, every team member's contribution is essential to the success of the business while also contributing to a personal and collaborative atmosphere. I count myself extremely lucky to be able to work side-by-side with the smart and ambitious women on my team and I look forward to seeing where our journey will take us next!