Fashion Angels is a Milwaukee based company founded by sisters Goldi Miller (left)
and Myra Mouloudji (right). Though the company can traces its antecedents back to the 80's, the Fashion Angels brand was created in 1996. Though many of their products are toyetic, the line can be described as featuring tween girls lifestyle and activity products. I wanted to know more about Fashion Angels so I spoke with Goldi Miller. Here is my interview:
Richard: I find it fascinating that two sisters can share the same passion for design and Tweens. Can you tell us a bit about your relationship and how it helped to define Fashion Angels?
Goldi and Myra: We grew up in a “fashionable” household. Saturday was shopping day and we came to appreciate that change, trend and quality is what great fashion is about. When we started our company, we primarily made jewelry making kits. We made sure that the end resulting jewelry was something that the girls would be proud to wear or to give as a gift. We included real jewelry findings, tools and great quality beads. No one else was doing this at that time.
Richard: Can you tell us a bit about your history, some of the failures that you learned from and all of the successes?
Goldi and Myra: We started as “The Bead Shop”. Perhaps our first mistake was our name. People thought we just sold beads…after expanding our offerings we changed our name to Fashion Angels. Certainly we have “failures” in products that we think are the greatest thing since sliced bread. That’s what close-out guys are for. But we learn from those “failures” and try, try again. Regarding our successes, we try to extend those items into platforms to extend their success. We have done that with a number of our products including our design portfolio platform, “Tapefitti”, our jewelry making kits, and recently added “Magic Sequins” lifestyle products.
Richard: You have a CEO, Mark Miller. How long has Mark been with you and what made you design to bring in someone to fill that role (Is Mark your brother?).
Goldi: Mark is my husband. We started our first business while we were students at the University of Wisconsin. During our sophomore year, we opened a women’s shoe store on campus that grew to 10 stores around the Midwest after graduation. That is where we learned about trend and fashion and retail. All great skills to have under your belt when transitioning to wholesale.
Richard: You product line covers a lot of departments. Can you tell us what categories you carry and how you manage all of it?
Goldi and Myra: We love the challenge of covering all tween trends. Our target customer is all about change and lives for what’s next. We are currently immersed in bath and beauty, accessories including backpacks, stationary and back to school along with our evergreen platforms of craft kits and fashion design portfolios. Our sales crew works very hard to establish relationships with buyers out of the toy aisle. We also make contact with buyers at shows outside of the toy industry.
Richard: How do you feel you differentiate from other Tween brands?
Goldi and Myra: We are first to market with new trends. That is most important if you want to capture this market. Our graphics, packaging and product selection speaks directly to this customer. Our team of designers live and breathe our target customer.
Richard: What's next for Fashion Angels?
Goldi and Myra: So much! We are looking to expand into ready to wear, footwear and more. Our path will be led by our tween customers, their wants and needs. Ask a tween, she will tell you what is next for Fashion Angels!