With his years of experience, Lemonis held tightly to the idea that Detroit Denim would not survive as a men's denim jean company.
"We need to fill this floor with people that can bring ideas that we don't have today. We're going to need to understand what the assortment is for the company," Lemonis said. "We will continue to make jeans, but I don't believe that if you're in the apparel business you should make things just for guys, because that's not where the meat of the market is."
When Lemonis first met Marguerite, a production stitcher at Detroit Denim, she told Lemonis "fashion is a bad word around here."
Lemonis took Yelsma, Lane and Marguerite to a local thrift shop to select items they could refashion and create one-of-a-kind pieces. The goal was to expand creativity and sell them at "explosive margins."
He further emphasized that he's looking for creativity and the willingness to take a chance.
After thrifting, they returned to Detroit Denim's production floor, where Lemonis wanted the team to be creative and have a fun free-for-all while refashioning their vintage items. He encouraged the team to break away from their usual process and worked with Yelsma on "getting comfortable and just letting other people do things."
Lemonis also reminded Lane, who he noticed overthinks all her processes, to enjoy herself and not take herself so seriously.
"We're not ever doing this because we wanted some easy road, we're going to embrace this challenge," Lane said. "It's not easy, but it's worth it."
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