How I Started My Own Business

How and Why I Started My Own Business

My journey is best compared to a crazy fairytale and if I wasn’t in it I
would question that it could even have happened but it was grit,
confidence and most of all perseverance that got me through and allowed
me to find the most amazing path I could ever have.
I started my company 11 years ago when I was on bedrest with my
daughter. I worked for a large law firm and went into labor at 20 weeks. I
was put on bedrest and thought this is my chance to start living the life
that I had dreamt of as a little girl and above all, I want my daughter to
know how to be courageous in her own life and fight for her dreams even
if that meant going against what everyone around her was wanting her to
do. So I told my then-husband I want to start my own company and make
it into Macy’s. Keep in mind I had no design experience, no contacts in
the industry just a girl with a dream and not a cent in her purse. So he
looked at me and said no when the baby is born you are going back to
your real job and I said well you can’t do anything to me for 20 weeks and
his response was well I’m not giving you any money. SO a partner at the
law firm had 4 diamonds and I told her to give me your diamonds and tell me
what you want and whatever I get on top I get to keep so she said to take
So I flipped them in bed and I made so much money I decided to
get more diamonds. So I googled until I got as close to the diamond mines
as I could which was a man in Israel. I began buying and flipping
diamonds to fund the company and didn’t take on any outside investment
until 2 years ago. During that same time I cold called Macys corporate
and switched up the last 4 digits of the phone number until the head of
Macys answered and had heard I had been stalking her so she agreed to
meet me and I also had found on skype a man in China that was willing to work for free for me just to work for an American girl.
So I sent him out into China and he found me Ralph Laurens factory and I since I didn’t have any knowledge in this area I thought if Ralph is safe there surely Ill
be safe. So we started my first samples and I used all of my money from
the first diamonds to rent a penthouse suite that overlooked Madison ave
in NYC for my mtg with Macys. She came in and said I can’t believe that
you have actual product. I thought you were going to have paper plates.
She looked at me and said you know what. I believe in you so much that I
am going to pull Ralph Lauren and Vera Wang and test you in their spot
and I am pulling Ralph because his factory isn’t shipping his goods. So
without knowing a person in Bangladesh, I felt in my gut some random
reason to go there to search for a factory.
This was shortly after 911 and I am an American girl entering into a 3rd world country. I went through bomb checks on the roadsides and I witnessed death happening for the first time on a dirt road. And it was there on that dirt road I found the heart and the soul of my company and that was to be a voice for those that
aren’t strong enough to have one and the legs until they can find the strength
of their own. We now have 3k women artisans and offer free health care
and childcare.
I am a firm believer in if you want something, you have to act on it to make it happen. There are so many dangers and the unknown that you will face. But isn't that the fun part of life???
-Xoxo Darbie Angell

Darbie Angell

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