Thu | Apr 18, 2019

Growth & Jobs | Facetih Fashion breaks out of the mould

Published:Tuesday | March 19, 2019 | 12:19 AMKeisha Hill/Senior Gleaner Writer

Young entrepreneurs are all the rage today. However, with the competition pool so large, and contending with scarce finances and the ever-changing business landscape, a large percentage of them put their entrepreneurial journey on hold.

However, for entrepreneur Shevaun McKenzie, his business is the passion of his life. His business concept, Facetih Fashion (pronounced ‘feisty fashion’), has been creating waves on the local market with uniquely manufactured Jamaican products.

Faceith Fashion began when McKenzie started wearing shirts emblazoned with unique phrases. People, he said, became fascinated with the catchy phrases and wanted to be clothed in similar fashion.

“We started off with shirts, expanded to offer caps the following year, then expanded to baby onesies after that. These items have been a hit, especially products like our ‘GWEH!’ caps and our ‘Man A Yard’ onesies. They are really our quick-sellers. The first batch of ‘GWEH!’ caps was made overseas, and they were sold out before they even got to Jamaica,” he said.

VIABLE ENTITY

The business, which started more than three years ago, has had its fair share of challenges, but McKenzie is confident that Facetih Fashion is a viable entity that will withstand the test of time. With the brand being uniquely Jamaican and tailored for locals and the tourist market, he feels it is unlikely that the brand will lose its groundbreaking appeal.

“We try to tailor the items based on the clientele of that store. Needless to say, we do include other items in our catalogue, such as the ‘Yuh Fava Ediat’ shirts, among others. As we aim to increase our store counts, we are increasing the number of Jamaican products that we offer,” McKenzie said.

With the objective of contributing to the local economy, all of Facetih Fashion’s products, except the caps, are made in Jamaica. Despite the costs associated with production, McKenzie said they try to have the items manufactured in Jamaica because the process provides jobs for Jamaicans.

“Due to the increase in prices, we decided to distribute certain cost-efficient items in locations that these products go quickly, regardless of the price. If you try distributing to some local stores, they won’t take the items due to the cost factor and other cheaper alternatives. If other persons are to manufacture in Jamaica, the pros and cons must be weighted first for each specific product to see if it is feasible to do so,” he said.

Facetih Fashion also exports, and the objective this year is to secure merchandising deals in stores overseas. Local stores that carry the Facetih Fashion product line include Things Jamaican, located at Norman Manley International Airport; Art Connect at Devon House; and Paul Bryan’s Bookstore at the University of Technology, Jamaica.

With plans in the pipeline to add a new item to the Facetih Fashion catalogue, McKenzie said being an entrepreneur opens a window of possibility each day.

“I would encourage everyone to work on their ideas and goals, and don’t let anyone tell you no. The younger you are, the better – more time to amass knowledge and learn from your mistakes,” he said.

You can follow Facetih Fashion on Instagram (@facetihfashion) to keep up to date on new designs, products and giveaways.

keisha.hill@gleanerjm.com