This week’s Mayor – Tiffany Wu

Tiffany Wu

Hello friends!

We wanted to introduce you to a very special person. Her name is Tiffany Wu. She is special to us because she bagged her corporate job and decided to start her own business making bags. That’s a lot of bagging. 

Tiffany just launched a new handbag business called Tiffany Wu. But here’s the thing. It’s not just any handbag business. It’s a 100% made in America handbag business. Made in America? Fine, whatever. Nope. It’s not what you think.

Tiffany Wu bag

We pretty much thought that “made in America” meant that the item was made in America. Meaning, all the parts and labor were made in America.

Tiffany informed us that “Made in America” just means that the good or service has to be “assembled” in America. You can source goods from China and put it together in your mom’s basement in America, and it would be considered “made in America” by “made in America” standards.

Tiffany’s bags are 100% made in America. All the labor *and* parts. That doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it is.

Q. Your mission is a big part of your business. Tell us a few things that you learned in your “made in America” research process:

1. I knew I really wanted to keep my product made in the US. I think there is a quality that has been lost in overseas manufacturing. When I started looking into what it really meant for it be made in the US found out, that it only means the labor is done here. Materials or any of the parts need to make the product can be from anywhere. And to me that only meant half of the product is Made in the US. I really wanted to create something that was fully created in the US, including the materials. Everything except for the Italian leather was sourced in here.

Q. What is your favorite thing about your bags?

My favorite part about the bags is the feel. The leather is uber soft and the strap chain is really smooth. So it feels nice to wear and your hair won’t get caught in it.
Q. What have you learned about wholesale vs. retail distribution when it comes to selling your handbags?
Right now I’m selling directly through my site, and some point I do plan on selling wholesale, but because I’m doing small quantity runs, it’s not a good option for me yet. (It costs more to make if you do smaller runs.) When you sell through a retailer, you basically sell them your product at half the retail price. Right now my retail price is not at the 50% profit margin recommended when you are doing wholesale. When I can get my cost low enough to hit that margin, then I can start the wholesale process.
Q.  Who would be your #1 celeb you’d want to carry your bag
Mindy Kaling – I love her style and she embodies what my brand is – the feminine yet strong modern woman.
Check out Tiffany’s bags here and she suggests you check out this documentary called Sweatshop: deadly fashion.