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30 Mar My First Month at FOMO
Hi, I’m Rachel and for those of you who don’t know me, I’ve recently joined team FOMO as the new garment technologist and designer.
Since seeing the job advert for the role at FOMO, I was really intrigued to learn more about the position. With some 15 years’ experience in the fashion and textiles industry and a lifelong love of horses – the role seemed perfect for me. I was delighted to be invited for an interview and, in speaking with the team that day, getting a better understanding of the company and its objectives, it was clear to see the role was going to be challenging and rewarding in equal measure.
Well, to say my first month on the job has been eventful would be an understatement!
FIRST DAY NERVES
The evening before my first day at FOMO was quite nerve wracking, having been on an extended maternity leave, the thought of going back to work and leaving my little boy was quite daunting, not least the fact that it was a completely new job that I was starting. However, Carmen and the rest of the team were so welcoming, it soon felt like I had known them for years – everyone has been so great at explaining all the different aspects of the company, it’s been easy to get up to speed with everything and settle in quickly.
IN AT THE DEEP END
As many of you who are following our story will know, we are on the cusp of getting our amazing body protectors to market, but what you may not know is all the hard work that goes into these protectors behind the scenes. FOMO’s “No Compromise” vision to have a body protector that substantially surpasses all current safety standards and is so comfortable that you don’t even know you are wearing it, means that we are always striving to achieve the safest and most comfortable fit possible.
So what does that mean I hear you ask? Well it means months of designing and refining; most of the major elements of our body protector have been designed in-house, so all these individual components have had to be designed, sampled and then produced in bulk before they are applied to the protector. It also means extensive pattern cutting, adjustments, fits and re-fits. Our patterns have been developed to be lightweight, comfortable and ergonomic, allowing freedom of movement in the saddle, whilst offering upper body protection from falls, so to ensure that our protectors are above and beyond the competition, we spend a LOT of time in development.
DAY TO DAY
So what’s a typical day at FOMO like? Well, as we are a small dynamic team, there are rarely two days that are the same. We all love to be very hands-on with the company, so whether it’s brainstorming new ideas together in the office, meeting suppliers and manufacturers, or spending time with the production team at the sample unit, there is always something exciting going on.
As you may imagine, since starting, I have been spending the majority of my time at our sample unit, checking patterns to ensure each and every point is as it should be. Fit is almost as important as safety for us, so refining the smaller details can take just as long as the bigger ones. I have also been working alongside our talented machinists who take great time and care to ensure the protectors are constructed to a high quality – their perseverance and dedication to ensuring the garments look as great as they perform is really inspiring.
One of the most interesting things I have been learning recently is the correct, and very specific way, to measure our protectors, to ensure they pass safety testing with flying colours. Coming from a more fashion orientated background, it’s safe to say this is definitely the most technical garment that I’ve ever worked on, the marriage of so many different elements, from our impact absorbent foam, to the outer shell materials, all selected to be breathable and durable when worn, to our patented adjustment mechanism, means there’s lots to think about when assembling each garment. Every single element has to be perfect, so getting to grips with all the requirements for our body protector has been quite a learning curve, but I love the challenges that each day brings.
Now, because of the restrictions we are under due to Coronavirus, I have been unable to carry on working at the sample unit, or our office, so I have decamped to my home office and am continuing to work on developing our new kids “FLIP” body protector. We are excited to share this with you as soon as we can, so be sure to watch out for updates.
At this moment in time, like so many companies out there, we are not sure when we will all be able to work together again in the same office, but what I do know is that I can’t wait to get back there and I’m excited for what the future holds for FOMO!