We had the good fortune of connecting with Shannon Haly and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shannon, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Non Physical started really gradually. I started sewing when I was around 15, mainly so I could make my own clothes for parties. After awhile some girls in my school started asking me to make dresses for them, and I think it was maybe two years later that I was consistently making prom dresses for people out of my parents kitchen! I decided to set up our website and instagram page in my final year of school because I wanted it to expand outside of my hometown.
I also saw a shift in what people wanted to wear to prom, lots of people coming to me were looking for simple cuts and form-fitting silhouettes, which were really difficult to find at the time, and I figured there was a gap for me there.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am an Evening Wear Designer from Cork, Ireland! When I was 18 I applied for every fashion school in Ireland and the UK.. maybe sixteen of them. I didn’t get into a single one. At the time, fashion was all I wanted to do, and because we’re taught that university = success, I initially took the rejection as the end of my designing. I remember being so heartbroken because I had spend the previous four years anticipating going to fashion college. I worked crazy hours on my portfolio, had a street fashion show, and had a steady income stream from clothes I was making for other people, all of which felt like such a waste now. But a few months later, Non Physical was still running, and I was still getting orders from people. I was working a few jobs in film and doing some acting work and realised that all of the creativity I put elsewhere only fed back into my designing (art begets art)
I realised that I struggled so much with not getting into university because all of those ‘rejections’ were societally perceived rejections. They’re ‘rejections’ we’re taught will hold us back and prevent future success from the one thing that can move us forward (our degree) All I wanted was to run my own brand, create work I loved, and for it to be financially viable, and I was doing that, and my lack of degree never prevented or hindered that.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Shoutout to my parents, for letting me turn their house into a home studio every time I come visit. For still letting me stay with them even though there are pins and fabric scraps permanently embedded in our floor!


Website: https://nonphysical.bigcartel.com

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/non.physical/

Image Credits
Graphic Design Logo: Sv.meet

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutLA is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.