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Cotton Makers: Reuben Reuel, Designer of Demestik

Reuben Reuel

When Reuben Reuel began designing clothes, he feared failure above everything else. This past month, he dressed Beyonce—again.

Reuben is the owner and designer of Demestik, a clothing line characterized by bold African prints, architectural patterns, and soft, supple cotton fabric. Like so many successful people, Reuben struggled with breaking out of his comfort zone, meeting his fear of failure, and learning that he was equal to it. He’s also one of our Cotton Makers, small business owners who create with cotton, who have inspiring personal journeys, and who have shared their stories about taking risks to achieve success. We spoke to Reuben again so he could share some words of wisdom about stepping out of your comfort zone and remaining confident in one’s talent.

What was your biggest fear when starting Demestik?
My biggest fear when starting my business was the thought of failing. I always asked myself “What if I fail?” But after a while I stopped asking myself that question and starting asking myself, “What if I don’t start?” I’ve realized that DOING is the most important part of any plan; just DOING, starting, and beginning.

Was there a specific moment or turning point when you knew this was what you wanted to do for a living?
I knew that being a designer was a passion of mine and would eventually be my occupation when I started to learn how to sew. I had a real desire to understand clothing construction from the inside out. I have a true love for clothing and how it makes people feel when they wear them.

What does “creation” mean to you?
My motto is “Live to Create, Create to Live.” Creation means doing the work, expressing oneself through art. Creation is taking something and turning into something brand new.

My motto is “Live to Create, Create to Live.”

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