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Meet Lauren Ha of High Avail

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lauren Ha.

Lauren, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
While attending college, my friends for the most part were artistically inclined. I was amazed by their raw ability to create and produce where not anyone can just pick it up and lay it out. Both my roommates were painters, my closest friends were aspiring rappers and music producers, and my family having strong hard work ethic to pursue their entrepreneurship passion. Leaving my hometown to live in the Monterey Bay, closed to all the bay area cities, opened my eyes to different creative cultures giving me the opportunity to be exposed to how they portrayed their creative expression. I found myself conflicted with not having the ability to create as well as the pure talented creators. I wanted to contribute or partake, but I had yet to discover my outlet or medium.

One day it dawned upon me that I can combine the talents those around me with my ability to connect both passions into a whole. Where I lacked in artistic ability, I made up with entrepreneurial pursuits. Growing up in Chinese-American household, my parents were immigrants who worked hard to achieve the American Dream and provided me the opportunity to achieve it as well. My mom majored in Biochemistry while my dad worked hard to bring my family from Vietnam to America. Together they owned a Chinese restaurant and made sure to instill hard work ethic by being a living testament. Each had their own personal professional pursuits while joining together to manage the restaurant they had started. Drawing influence from my family’s entrepreneurial spirit, my outlook changed upon one’s typical contribution to the creative community. My new creative medium? A collaborative clothing line. I feel so blessed to be able to blend my two passions together through this clothing line.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
My journey has been everything but a smooth road. I have definitely learned a lot from the bumps and unexpected turns along the way. Early on in the creative and productive process, it seemed as if with every five steps I took forward, some new obstacle would push me three steps back. Each fault and failure left me with more lifelong lessons than a handful of small victories could ever provide.

Starting this brand in the midst of my junior-year as a STEM college student, it seemed almost impossible to find balance between my rigorous coursework, a part-time job, and a social life while trying to allocate funds and resources to support this brand. Like most entrepreneurs, I spent sleepless nights curating business plans, networking with little to no leads, and designing countless styles to embody a vision that I had yet to perfect. The learning curve was steep lol, but I am grateful for the many friends and connections I have made along the way.

Please tell us about High Avail.
The transitive definition of ‘avail’ is to “be helpful or useful to somebody” (https://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/avail_2). High Avail was created to not only embody my creative spirit but to yield opportunities for other artists as well. My mission was to positively impact the creative space with inclusive designs and events. I have learned along the way that the collaborative efforts of a creative community is more impactful and purposeful than that of an effort to stay current with the trends. I have featured various local artists not only in my clothing designs but in whatever medium they choose to create within. I am mindful and grateful for all the helping hands who have contributed to High Avail. In the short span of 2 years, we have participated in 2 pop-ups, had three creative releases, launched a campaign supporting local artists, and released visual productions tied with new and upcoming talents. I am proud of the evolution of my company. Starting from the bottom with limited support, I would have never imagined to have accomplished what we have done today.

If you had to go back in time and start over, would you have done anything differently?
If I had the opportunity to start this clothing brand over again, I would make sure I had enough graphic designs at my disposal to begin with. I wish I had a more fluid image when releasing my initial clothing designs. It would allow me to significantly draw upon the detailed design to tie back with the mission of High Avail. At the end of the day, I cannot be so hard on myself on releasing perfection. Trends and styles from the past recycle back in a uniform motion that recollects the modern day look. It’s really when you jump into them and decides if you want to jump back out to another trend. After all, this has all been a rewarding learning process.

Pricing:

  • T-shirts $20-$26
  • Long Sleeves $28
  • Hoodies $35-$40
  • Hats $20

Contact Info:

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