Hundreds of MAGIC Las Vegas attendees flooded into the North Hall at the Las Vegas Convention Center on Tuesday to see pop star Katy Perry, the keynote speaker for the biannual fashion trade show.
Perry was greeted with cheers as she entered the room, while her most popular songs like “California Gurls” and “Dark House” played in the background.
Perry spoke about her shoe line Katy Perry Collection, her connection to fashion and her Las Vegas residency at The Theatre at Resorts World.
The singer said she had a “shoestring budget,” growing up in a low-income and strict religious household in Santa Barbara, California. Still, Perry would find clothes at thrift stores and developed her signature pinup style at age 13.
“It’s just always been a way for me to express myself and stand out,” said Perry, on her relationship to fashion. “I feel like we can understand each others vibe by presentation.”
Her namesake footwear brand was operated by apparel maker and brand owner Global Brands Group for five years. Perry said it was then that she learned “what it takes to make (a) shoe and sell a shoe.”
But when Global Brands filed for Chapter 11 in 2021 Perry found herself scrambling.
“We got a call and I had to buy it in a week,” said Perry. “I took about four to five people at Global Brands Group and I just bought all the stock. We did some sales and then we started working on the next collection.”
As a final word of advice, Perry told her fans, Katy Cats as she refers to them, to persevere through rejection.
“I’ve been rejected a lot in my life and I’ve written many of songs about it,” said Perry, who claimed to have been dropped by three record labels before landing on the perfect one. “I just take that rejection and remodel it.”
In the West Hall, TV personality Kristin Cavallari shared her path to entreprenuership. Cavallari appeared on the MTV reality series “Laguna Beach” and its spin-off “The Hills” as well as her own show “Very Cavallari.”
The star’s new passion has become her jewelry line Uncommon James.
Cavallari said launching her jewerly brand just required a website and manufacturer. The brand was up and running after only four months of planning and has continued to stay successful for five years.
Cavallari credits her reality show “Very Cavallari” for the success of the brand.
“The sole reason I did that was for the company; I looked at it as a marketing tool,” said Cavallari. “’Very Cavallari’ really catapulted us to the next level. We essentially saw overnight success.”
Even with the success of the brand, Cavallari ran into issues with too much inventory and being over staffed.
“We had to discount a lot of it, and we ended up trashing a lot,” she said. “Everything is a learning process and that’s also why it’s important to hire the right people too … I’m as good as my team is.”
Throughout the talk Cavallari stressed the importance of good marketing.
“At Uncommon James we’re a marketing company,” said Cavallari. “We have really simple jewelry … so it’s how can we differentiate ourselves — it’s with marketing.”
Cavallari gave some words of advice, before opening up the floor for audience questions.
“Trust your gut. People are always going to tell you ‘no,’” said Cavallari. “I didn’t go to college, but I have dedication, hard work and passion.”