Fallene Wells was getting ready to acknowledge defeat in her Kickstarter campaign, which ended on February 22. The Denver fashionista was even preparing a second fundraising effort -- with a more modest goal -- on another crowdsourcing website since she was so far away from the $20,000 she'd hoped to gather on Kickstarter.
And then the money started pouring in.
"I was surprised, too, to be honest," says Wells, the former Project Runway contestant who is launching a vintage-inspired clothing line. "It was just crazy, the momentum that it got. It happened so fast. It was really exciting."
Wells reached her goal, and she credits a networking event she planned -- a few days before the Kickstarter campaign ended -- at the TACtile Textile Arts Center, which is run by Dianne Denholm, who won a Westword MasterMind Award two days later. The party showcased prototypes of Wells's Modern Nouveau Collection.
"People came and checked out my designs in person, and I think that created a lot of hype," she says. In the end, Wells garnered 300 backers.
And now the real work starts. Wells has tapped Denver fashion developer Jessica Montoya and her new project, COsewn. Montoya is currently looking for warehouse space, where she will employ several seamstresses to create the Modern Nouveau line.
From there, Wells will need to buy fabric, update a few of her designs and create a timeline for which outfits to make first. She'll also need to set up a photo shoot, create a catalogue and start selling the whole thing to local stores.
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Most of the money will cover those costs, although a percentage will go to Kickstarter and to Amazon.com, which takes a cut. Wells is also giving about $1,200 to help Samuel Schimek pay the rent at his local-centric downtown shop, I Heart Denver.
"We're going to be busy," she says.