Do I Really Need to Be A Contortionist to Zip Up My Dress?

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Not anymore! Canadian entrepreneur, Natalie Catania (in the middle of the photo on the right), has FINALLY solved my first-world problem with her great invention the Zipper Pull. The idea is a play off old school contraptions that our grandmother’s used to use to yank up their zipper on the back side of their dress when their children or hubbies weren’t around to help them.

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Ms. Catania has modernized and beautified this concept and to my delight, the Zipper Pull won’t break my bank account, costing just $29. Plus, it can be worn as piece of jewelry – very resourceful!

I had the pleasure of catching-up with Catania at Toronto’s chic CIBO restaurant in King West, an area ripe with fashion inventions. We dug into the nuts and bolts of Catania’s business plan.

“I’ve always been an entrepreneur at heart and attempted to launch various businesses in the past, mostly centered around design and art,” said Ms. Catania, a graduate of Ontario College of Art and Design. “I learned from each endeavor how to build a successful company and was ready to merge my passion for fashion and design with business. That’s when I began building the Zipper Pull.”

The Zipper Pull, which was released to the market in July 2015, has gained traction fast, catching the attention of big media streams such as Cosmopolitan Magazine and Dragon’s Den. Though we don’t know the outcome of Ms. Catania’s pitch to the well-heeled Dragons (the show airs in October 2015), the exposure will surely add to the Zipper Pull’s fashionable momentum.  

“It has been a tremendous amount of work thus far to build the prototype and develop the marketing strategy for Zipper Pull, but I’ve been very lucky to team up with a strong mentor, Jessica Jensen.” Ms. Jensen (on the left in the first photo) has established herself in the Canadian fashion space with her hip purses and namesake designs. Ms. Catania attributes much of her success to date to Jensen’s business coaching.

“The next phase of my business is to raise capital for our first major inventory order,” says Catania. “Creating a fashion company means putting the Zipper Pull in the right stores at the right time and to do that we need to be armed with high-quality inventory and an solid marketing strategy.”

To address the need for a cash injection to her business, Ms. Catania, like many modern entrepreneurs, recently launched a Kickstarter campaign. “Our Kickstarter campaign is targeting a fundraising goal of $15,000. But, more importantly it will raise awareness of the Zipper Pull and how we can help make feeling beautiful easy.”

The profit model for Zipper Pull is based on premium product positioning with high-end retailers, and of course, keeping costs low – something Ms. Catania knows well as she has bootstrapped her way through the Zipper Pull start up.

If you want to learn more about Zipper Pull, watch this flick or better yet, join the movement on Kickstarter and buy your very own. I have and can’t wait for it to arrive.