Name an article of clothing which is ever green and not seasonal, never goes out of style, is a must have, takes little fabric to make, weights nothing to pack and ship, has high profit margins, is an impulse buy, enough is not enough and there is always a new wave of young buyers entering the market for it worldwide…
Lingerie is in the DNA of women and no matter what happens in fashion it will never go away, like the wedding dress its part of the social psyche and ever growing
And that is exactly what one of my high school friends stumbled upon, the business of lingerie.
As we graduated one day a group of friends standing at top of stairs was talking about the careers they were going to pick and to the amusement of all of us he proclaimed that “I am going into the lingerie business!” how kinky! we commented… while I was already shooting for paid projects with big dreams ahead, and photography was my life’s track
Designer Lingerie Fashion Photography
Years went by and our paths didn’t cross, until we bumped into each other on facebook, you know how that goes… I did a little snooping around and found out that he owns 13 fashion brands, so we met at his warehouse in downtown LA and I got to hear his 1980’s story of the lingerie business firsthand
Lingerie Model Red Designer Bra LA Fashion Photography David Victory VRset
Him and a cousin started in downtown LA and not knowing anything began importing cheap Chinese made lingerie and distributing it with limited success, after years of bumping around with fierce competition keeping them small, they started their own label and branding proved to be the key to their success and growth
Black Lingerie Set Amazon Studio Fashion Photography David Victory VRset
As long as their competition kept on using the “factory” packaging and labeling and photography they were ahead of the game and they increased this margin by doing their own inhouse photo shoots with LA models and after a while specifying their own designs to China which solidified their own legitimate lingerie brand
Colored Bra Collection Lingerie Fashion Photographer David Victory VRset
Money kept coming and they kept expanding their line and SKU until they split which usually happens when either the partners are suffering financially or so rich they become greedy and want to go it alone, so he did and parlayed the lingerie business into other fashion lines
Amazon Studio Fashion Photography Black Lingerie Set David Victory VRset
Since my friend had already mastered the ins and outs of the business, in no time flat he was able to duplicate everything he had learned and create brand after brand which was unique to him and hired local LA talent plus some family members for key positions in the company, so the lingerie formula worked for athlethisure brands and he was there at the right time in 2000 creating his own designs, ordering to China, picking up from customs and shipping out from his warehouse
Lifestyle Lingerie Fashion Photography LA David Victory VRset
And not just any warehouse, he owns the whole complex which has 33 truck bays and that was impressive to walk through with a school buddy who had not idea what he was getting into in the 80’s and now enjoys fast cars for leisure, one of which is a $2.5M LaFerrari
Lingerie Lifestyle Fashion Photography David Victory VRset
China today is not the same, they fly in the lingerie models and have their own sophisticated studios which is cause for concern for LA fashion photographers, that is a major reason why there are fewer established lingerie photo shoots on the West coast, however this situation is being partially balanced by the many startup Shopify fashion brands and smaller DTLA distributors who instinctively are following the path my friend took where all of them are using the same exact Chinese garments but tagging their own label and marketing it with their own LA fashion photography, yes mine.
Lingerie Fashion Photography Los Angeles David Victory VRset
Here are more interesting reads on Medium.com about my Fashion Photography adventures in LA!
David Victory One of top fashion photographers in Los Angeles David Victory shoots LookBook, Lifestyle, Ecommerce, Advertising & Editorial fashion photography in LA VRset.com