The first thing you notice about Tunde from Tunde San Francisco is his impeccable style. Dressed to impress in a blazer, trousers, and a pocket square, the true pinnacle of his outfit is his oxford shirt, self-designed and made in San Francisco.
A few months ago that oxford shirt was just a dream. Having worked at Ralph Lauren for many years, Tunde had a vision of the type of shirts he wanted to make. The shirt would be an oxford shirt made of the highest quality fabric. It would have no pocket, 1/8th inch stitching, and collar-stays that went all the way to the corner of the collar. Most importantly, the shirt needed to be produced in San Francisco. With this vision in mind Tunde was ready to start his business, but didn’t know where to begin.
Tunde signed up for the How to Manufacture Locally for Apparel and Sewn Products workshop taught by SFMade’s Senior Director Janet Lees. Armed with a resource sheet and book recommendation, Tunde left the workshop prepared to start his business. He first approached Charlotte Miller, a pattern maker on SFMade’s resource list. He explained his vision to her, gave her the measurements, and in a short time received his pattern. Then he set about finding his fabric, after trips to L.A. and N.Y.C, Tunde finally found the fabric he wanted. Having had the fabric cut, he brought it to another business on his resource list, SFMade member Synergy Apparel, an apparel contract manufacturer. “Connie Pang from Synergy was extremely helpful and helped me make my dream a reality,” Tunde explained. In no time at all he used his resource list again to have labels made, and the shirts went into production.
With his shirts being produced Tunde realized he still wanted more guidance, and so he made an appointment for a strategic consultation with Janet. She helped him hone his vision by giving him guidance and answering his questions. For Tunde, someone who is self-described as being driven by passion, she acted as his sounding board and helped him understand the scope of his vision. It was a perfect opportunity to help him find the quickest path to where he wanted to be, and helped prevent him from making some very costly mistakes.
For Tunde SFMade is more then just a resource, it’s a partnership that he’s happy he’s made. “In order to realize your vision it’s importation to have a partner who understands the journey you are about to embark on. That partnership to me is consulting with Janet Lees [SFMade] in order to start that journey.” He plans to have another strategic consultation with Janet again soon.
To check out Tunde’s oxford shirts, visit http://tundesf.com.
For inquiries about SFMade programs, please contact: Brittany, Community Engagement Coordinator, at [email protected]org.