We were lucky to catch up with Britni “B.R.A” Azzam recently and have shared our conversation below.
Hi Britni “B.R.A”, thanks for joining us today. How did you come up with the idea for your business?
Long before I started my business, and even before I became a rapper, friends and family would call me bra, and would sorta poke fun at the fact that B.R.A is my initials. So by the time I became a rapper the name naturally caught on. It was a inside joke with the people closest to me in a way because I have always been an advocate for embracing your natural beauty. I started to wear makeup just as early as I decided to not to, and probably became more well known for not wearing a bra. To be honest I thought it was funny how daring people thought that was, and it fueled that fire inside me to challenge social norms, and expectations. I would take notice to how something like wearing make up was a “must” in order to leave the house, and would often take note of these generalized claims that “that’s just the way it is”. This didn’t make sense to me and gave me the determination to live my life as an example. It gave me the courage to walk through my life bare, and without a mask on. I thrived on the satire of my name, B.R.A, and really started to become my brand. So after I released my debut EP, “Tha Manifesto” people started to get a feel for what I stood for as an artist. Then randomly one night hanging out my friend she asked her friend what he thought B.R.A stood for. He quickly replied “I don’t know Be Real Always”, and I immediately loved it. It was the first time where I felt like people could feel the message I was trying to put out there. It was this small but profound moment where I felt like I was on my destined path. That eventually evolved into a song on my sophomore EP “BLOOMiNG PAiNZ” simply called “Be Real Always”. It quickly turned into an anthem, and ultimately is what lead me to creating my brand Be Real Always Company. A tie dye streetwear brand where each piece is unique just like the costumers that shop there. Products are released in small batches and hand touched by me making it all the more personal. It’s a grassroots company that I hope to continue to grow and spread messages of self love and acceptance!
As always, we appreciate you sharing your insights and we’ve got a few more questions for you, but before we get to all of that can you take a minute to introduce yourself and give our readers some of your back background and context?
Becoming a rapper naturally led into me creating my streetwear brand. Music, and poetry runs within my family and it is my first passion before anything else. It’s what inspires me, and helps me grow as a person in so many ways imaginable. I started to build my brand in order to continue to create music, and find the financial freedom to keep doing the things I set out to do. Despite that though, I also have seamstresses on both sides of my family and have recently noticed how this side of me is now revealing itself which has been very exciting. That being said, it is a very new experience for me and I am learning in front of anyone who wants to see, and join me on my journey. Right now, my brand is specializing in tie dye casual wear including beanies, jackets, tshirts, and more. My store does currently has some essential pieces available to enjoy right now. And I hope to show some new and exciting things by this coming winter using new techniques and improved designs. I am excited to evolve more with my style as well as learn the ins and outs of the business. I never would have guessed this would be the path I would be on, but always knew my life would be centered around the arts so I can’t being to explain how overjoyed I am to be able to be creative all while standing up for the things I believe in. It’s a balance I’ve been searching for my entire life, and fuels me to continue to get better at everything I do. Which I hope people can notice, and appreciate because everything is made with love and pure intentions.
Can you talk to us about how your funded your business?
Being that I wanted to build my business from the ground up, and keep it on a small scale I funded everything up until this point. It has been a passion project for me, and so I have saved up all my own capital. This will be my second year in business and am working on building up my customer database and get my name out there and maybe eventually in the future I will need to look into outside investments. For now, I am proud to say this has been all possible due to my determination and money management skills. That being said, I realize now how much it really takes to scale a business the way you may be envisioning it. But I am having fun learning along the way, including all my mistakes.
How about pivoting – can you share the story of a time you’ve had to pivot?
Being so new to owning and operating a business I believe I am pivoting and reevaluating things all the time. It is necessary within the clothing industry too. In order to keep up with trends and being able to bring a fresh and new approach to things you can never get too comfortable. I am constantly readjusting ideas, and thinking of ways to make it better, and I honestly don’t think that will ever change. I will continue to learn how to execute my ideas into real life, and present them in a way that people will receive it. I’m okay with it though because that’s what makes things exciting, and I think it’s all a part of the journey!
- Website: berealalwayscompany.com
- Instagram: instagram.com/brizzni_
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Be-Real-Always-Company-105134155091659/
- Youtube: https://youtube.com/channel/UCUuwZxwMd1yTzsbgKd8X3iA
Tyler Stevens Dania Lujan Trinity Bell Makenzie Azzam Britni Azzam