The big day that I have been prepping for August 16, 2014. The Event: Rahma on the Runway, in Washington D.C.
I have been working hard for the last month or so. Buying fabric and finishing side projects so that I could concentrate on the items for the fashion show. I wanted everything to be perfect. This was a huge event for me and I knew if I pulled it off this would def open a few more doors for me. Every designers dreams, is to have her clothes seen and worn by everyone, EVERYWHERE!
A couple of weeks before the show I ran out of steam. Ramadan was over and I was just worn out physically. I did the thing that I did not want to do during Ramadan, which was sewing during our month of fasting. It was not to bad. The people that I made dresses for were close friends, so I did not mind. I definitely knew after Ramadan I would have to buckle down and get things together. I have a set of samples that I made for myself. As I began to think how I wanted to show my dresses at the show. I realized, that the smart thing to do was to make a second set of samples to hang on my rack at my vending table. While the models would have a set in the back to wear. After I had that thought I was hyped! I thought ok this is going to work. I can make this happen. In my HEAD it was a great idea, but the reality was I was NOT going to be able to sew up my fall dresses (8 dresses) AND sew up a second set of samples for the whole collection( 16 dresses in all).
I solved that problem, I found 2 ladies to help me sew. They were awesome! they finished my dresses for me. All I had to do was hem the dresses and make the belts and finish the turtlenecks for 6 dresses. So I picked up the dresses Thur, but I was so tired Thur night I fell asleep. I could not stay awake. In my head I thought no worries, fri night when I am in Charlotte resting I can finish up and be back on the road early.
I had two close friends that were coming with me to DC. Unfortunately, one of my friends son got sick (his asthma started to act up) so at the last min she pulled out. I was not worried, myself and my other friend could still make the drive up. So, the plan was to leave fri after work. We had to be on the road by 7pm, 8pm at the latest.
It’s Fri and NOTHING went as planned. I got off of work LATE. I still had to go grocery shopping for my kids and I needed to pack my clothes AND pack up the clothes for the fashion show. Load my car with my racks and vending supplies. My headlight went out and I bought 3 different lightbulbs none of them worked. Finally, I stopped at a 24hr auto zone. The guy there was so nice he figured out why my lights were not working. MY low beam and high beam needed to be replaced. I bought the low beam bulb but was attaching it to the high beam bulb socket! He attached the correct bulb to the correct socket. It was 10pm. I was 2 hours behind schedule and getting irritated.
We jump in the car and make the mad dash to the freeway and as soon as I turn on to the ramp to the freeway all I see are lights, wall to wall traffic!!! by this time I am cussing mad! I am behind schedule, starbucks was closed (so I could not get coffee) and there is traffic!!!!! Thank goodness the traffic was not major it lasted maybe 5mins. As soon as it broke up I am making the mad dash down the highway.
We make it to Charlotte 2:30am, so I thought ok I will rest for an hour get back up and finish my dresses and my other stuff. I over slept!!! I woke up at 7AM and technically we were suppose to be back on the road by 7am! I finished my dresses and we are on the road by 10:30 am. No worries right? From Charlotte to Washington is about 6hrs. We still have time right???? NOPE!
We hit Richmond VA and again, there is WALL TO WALL traffic. I was beginning to get very stressed and very discouraged. I could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. We where still 3hours out and all I could see was a sea of cars moving very slowly!!
As the time was ticking away and it seemed as though we were moving slower and slower. Finally, we where about 45mins-1hr outside of Washington, traffic is starting to pick up. We pass the Pentagon. It’s 6:30pm, the show is over at 8pm. By this time I am done. I am ready to go to the hotel and just cry my eyes out. NOTHING went according to plan and I just felt so blah. I called my mentor, Mrs. LaNette Kincaid of Women With Gifts and Justpearlz. I am on the phone with her crying, trying not to cuss up a storm and asking her for advice. Should I cancel or keep going. In my head I am going to cancel. I am on the phone with her and she tells me this one important thing. Showing up is all about TRUST. People need to be able to trust you and know that you are going to keep your word and show up.
I had 3 of my closest friends tell me the same thing. Just show up and see what happens! And that is what I did. We finally got out of traffic. I spoke to the sister who had put the show together. She told me they bumped me to last. The MC is stalling and I need to hurry up. There was a parking space in front of the hotel (Yay me!) I jumped out threw my dresses in the bag and ran to the show.
I walked in and I just wanted to cry. The models cheered for me. Wore my dresses. Rocked the stage. When I walked out the sisters clapped and everyone loved my collection. Even though I did not show all 16 dresses!
In the end, I met some great sisters. I was able to walk away with some great sales and potential returning customers.
I already knew, when we plan, Allah (God) plans and his plan is the best plan. By the end of the night I did not care, meaning I was not trying to control anything. I just went with the flow! and understood there was a lesson for me to learn some where in this. The lesson was, this is all part of the steps, bumps and falls one has to take when wanting to be successful in business or whatever life journey one is on. Regardless of what is going on in your life or what ever obstacles life is throwing at you. YOU have to keep going, YOU have to show up, YOU have to keep your head in the game!
In the end, the night was perfect. We drove around to take in some sights, when we finally arrived at our hotel. They over booked, so we did not have a room. They sent us to another hotel and paid for our ROOM!!!
I could not have planned that even if I wanted too!!!! The night was a success!!!