Starting a successful business involves trial and error.

Fortunately, there are plenty of books on business that can help you further.


The Golden Reading Tip

, entrepreneurs talk about the book that brought them the most.

This week David Sipkens, co-founder of shorts and pants brand MR MARVIS.

  • Entrepreneur:

    David Sipkens

  • Company:


  • Reading tip:

    American Dreamer: My Life in Fashion and Business

    by Tommy Hilfiger

Sipkens and co-founder Steven Vrendenbarg started MR MARVIS out of frustration in their own search for stylish yet comfortable shorts.

If they had already found one, it would often be out of the collection the next season.

Through a mutual friend, they came into contact with clothing designer Aafke Tuin, who designed the signature MR MARVIS shorts for them.

Sipkens and Vrendenbarg have no shortage of ambition.

Their shorts need to become as iconic as Lacoste polos or All Stars sneakers.

The range has now been expanded with different models and long trousers, in order to be less dependent on the shorts season.

Why did you choose this book as a golden reading tip?

"It's very recognizable because it's not just about Tommy Hilfiger's life, but also about the development and manufacturing process of clothing. According to Hilfiger, fitting clothes on models is much less effective than fitting on real people. We have done that too. . The fit of our pants has been developed with customers. The secret is the elastic waistband, without compromising on style. "

"Hilfiger once bought a billboard in Times Square with his last money for an advertisement in which he considered himself one of the largest fashion brands in the world."

David Sipkens, co-founder MR MARVIS

What was most recognizable in the book?

"Hilfiger writes about problems in the production process of clothing. We have also experienced them. In the early stages of the company, we once purchased fabric that we had not had checked before it went to the studio. This resulted in a batch of rejected pants.

I also find the bold commercials inspiring.

Hilfiger once bought a billboard in Times Square with his last money for an advertisement in which he considered himself one of the largest fashion brands in the world.

We are less provocative, but we have certainly taken risks.

It is surely

fingers crossed

when a significant part of the budget goes to marketing.

You never know in advance whether an ad will catch on. "

What would you do differently from the author?

"We are more of a lifestyle brand than a fashion brand. Our focus is on sustainability, style and eternal availability. The entire production chain is sustainable. We work with organic cotton and have the trousers produced in Portugal, where the working conditions are good. We have no stock surpluses because we do not change our models. Moreover, the trousers are only dyed after they have been made, which saves a lot of paint and water. "

Who would you recommend the book to?

"To anyone interested in the life of one of the great fashion moguls of our time. I read the book myself while on vacation and then bought it for my two co-founders. It's a bit American, but you have to read through that. "