how she did it

Case Studies // “It makes me want to get...

“It makes me want to get out of bed and do something different”

This story is about…

Name: Arina Pritch

Location: UK

Company: Pritch London

Industry: Fashion

What motivated you to start your business?

I grew up surrounded by art and innovation in all things, and while travelling around the world and seeing its ‘design’ different in all places, I loved noticing people making something out of nothing in food, music, paintings – and clothing too. I spent 5 years in London and studied Fashion Business and Luxury Brand Management at Instituto Marangoni, London and at Regents American College where I discovered my own talent and thought, “why be busy developing other brands when I could turn my own creativity into a reality people will love?!”

Tell us about your business…

We offer leather as a fashion piece rather than simply an “outwear” garment.  You see the multi-functional elements and the ‘feel’ of the leather on the outside that have strong and sexy design lines.  I’ve produced some customized items and see how people wear the jackets and mix and match them with other outfits.  They choose the jacket first as their signature piece and then match their outfit to that look.  It really is a “dare to be” look which is what ‘Pritch’ is all about.  It lets you say, “I Am”.

Hand stitched in Italy from Antelope Silk, Agneau Guanterie and Agneau Guanterie Suede, these are unashamedly premier pieces that you won’t want to take off.  Her Autumn/Winter 13 collection features strong designs, sexy black and greys and are highly customized with branded zip-pulls, nickel studs, unique silver zips, metal snaps and leather feathers that breathe “Rock ‘n’ Roll,” but in a way that can be worn out at a private yacht party, dancing into the night, or to the opera.  Pritch’s fusion of sense and styles allows you the choice to be rebellious in conservative society.  The collection’s signature piece, Voltage, sums this all up.  It really does turn heads.

What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?

Defining our real positioning. We decided quickly to produce in Italy, going for the highest level of materials and production and not go “cheap” for the mass-sell. Good decision; no regrets.

What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?

Word of mouth for bespoke orders, and great marketing, PR and a sales team that works toward collaborations with the right brands and moves things forward.

What have been your biggest challenges so far with running your business?

As a designer it’s always a challenge to stick to your beliefs and visions and not let others have too strong an impact on your decisions for design, quality, etc.  So I suppose, as always with creativity, it’s going to be interesting always finding the right balance for the consumer – a balance that provides enough surprise and uniqueness while also delivering practical items that will be worn with confidence.

How did you overcome these challenges?

By taking a seat in a café and just watching people through the window and observing what they do with their clothes and combinations – which seems to be endless.  It makes me want to get out of bed and do something different, deal with practical obstacles and make something happen.  It turns out that inspiration is often right in front of you.

What do you love about running your own business?

Designing jackets is fun, but there’s more to life than simply business.  I’ve travelled around the world and seen many things and it is clear that there is much that still isn’t right.  I have always believed that business should not simply exist as an amoral actor in global commerce, but have a larger role as part of its DNA.  This is the ethos of how Pritch sees business in the modern world.  They are inseparable.  These are not simply fine words.  I directly support Not On Our Watch – a charity, set up by Jerry Weintraub, Brad Pitt, George Clooney, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle & David Pressman, to keep the focus and pressure on regional and global actors not to forget about the crises and suffering in Darfur, Chad, Myanmar & Sudan and also act on crisis prevention.  I recently sponsored the ‘Pritch Stake’ horse racing event at Sandown Park this June as part of a Not On Our Watch race day, fundraiser and party, attended by a star studded line-up of celebrity and royal guests, all joining together to raise money in support of the organization’s goals.  It was amazing – though not when a gentleman had a heart attack at the event.  We are all human after all.

What advice would you give to other business owners?

Surround yourself with the right people and focus on delivering the best products and services possible.

How do you keep motivated through difficult times?

I have great support from my family and close friends through difficult times.

What’s your favourite quote?

“Life is the dancer and you are the dance.”

{Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth}

Who inspires you?

My mother. She is the strongest person I know.

Do you have a business philosophy?

Yes! Always design, create and deliver the most exceptional leather apparel that the exclusive clientele we serve will confidently wear.

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