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The Height of Fashion

Entrepreneur puts tall fashions in department stores

Chelsea Jones | 1/6/2014, 11:52 a.m.
Left photo: Height Goddess fashions. Right photo: Lameka Weeks The Height Goddess

If customers purchase items that don’t fit correctly once tried on, they can return or exchange those items. Weeks said that her team tries to help customers order their correct sizes by asking them to give details about the clothes they normally wear. Her team understands the way Height Goddess’ clothing fits, and they are able to offer customers suggestions.

Besides being tall, most customers are between the ages of 23 and 47 and are corporate managers or college and professional athletes. Since its 2007 inception, Weeks said that the company has really grown.

The company is mostly advertised by word-of-mouth; Weeks’ friends and customers help spread the word. In addition, the company is linked to an affiliate marketing program, and is promoted on blogging websites targeting tall women audiences.

The next level

One day, Weeks’ aunt encouraged her to take her business to the next level by applying to The Workshop at Macy’s program. A free retail vendor development program, the workshop is designed to give minority and/or women business owners the tools they need to be successful in the retail industry. It teaches these business owners how to get their clothing into major department stores.

While standing in line at the grocery store, Weeks’ aunt saw an ad for the workshop and called and informed Weeks. The application deadline was imminent, so Weeks rushed to start and finish the application, which was online. That was in 2011.

Unfortunately, Weeks wasn’t accepted. She re-applied for the 2013 workshop after a friend convinced her to. This round, she had ample time to work on the application, which she said took a while to complete, for it asked so many questions.

Later that winter, Weeks got an email stating that she had been selected for a panel interview at Macy’s New York headquarters in midtown Manhattan. When she arrived, it was snowing heavily, unlike anything she had ever seen before.

Navigating the snow, Weeks said, was challenging. When she left her hotel, her hair was full of curls; however, they soon fell because she was sweating so much. She mentioned that she was really nervous she would drop her clothes samples, which she had to bring to the interview, in the snow.

Nevertheless, Weeks remained focused. Once she entered the building, she ran to the ladies’ restroom and freshened up. Fortunately, the interview went smoothly. She said that she was confident it would go well, because she knew everything about her product.

In fact, the interview was eye-opening for one of the panel interviewers, who were all men. He expressed that he finally understood why his tall, teenage daughter had a difficult time finding clothes in stores: there weren’t any big and tall women clothes sections. Those sections existed in the men’s department, but why not the women’s department?

In March, Weeks learned that she had been accepted into the program. She recalled what it was like when she found out. Her and her sales manager were doing work and telling jokes when the acceptance email showed up in her inbox.