We had the good fortune of connecting with Tanaka Dodds and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tanaka, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
I am originally from Santa Rosa, CA which is a small city with a population of less than 200,000. So it’s very tight knit and pretty much everyone knows each other. My uncle was the sheriff of the county if that makes you understand it more. My family left the Bay Area in 1999 to move to Las Vegas due to it was financially better for us. So I am also from Las Vegas and I moved to DFW in November of 2018.
I want to be extremely transparent because that’s who I am when it comes to my brand so here it goes.
My family background is a huge reason on my impact. I was raised by a village when it comes to my upbringing. I watched my filipino grandmother take care of the whole family. I watched her wake up and go to work because she was determined to be an independent woman. Her work ethic was unmatched because she didn’t make excuses or depend on anyone. My mother wasn’t stable at that time of my life due to drugs. She was always loving and giving though. If my siblings needed anything, my mother hustled to make sure we didn’t go without. Was it always the best choices? No. But it showed me how to become a hustler myself. When it comes to my father, he always made sure to provide and put us in better situation. I remember us sleeping on floors growing up and my father promising us things will get better. He always worked hard and showed me how to have great work ethic because it will take me far as an adult. I didn’t really understand it when I was young but it stuck with me as I grew up. My stepmother was a huge impact on me also. She married my father at a young age but was very mature. So at 23, I witnessed her give birth and go right back to work. She would come home, help us kids with homework as she cooked dinner. That’s forever stamped in my memories. Those family members shaped me to become the woman I am today and I’m forever thankful for the good, bad and ugly.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
My business is my brand TANAKA DODDS. I named my brand after me because I’ve always wanted to build an empire using my own name. I knew that it would help set it apart from others and definitely stand out. I’m very proud of what my brand represents which is power and confidence. That is something I’ve exuded my whole life. I believe we should all know how powerful we really are and try to empower others any chance we get. My goal is to make sure that my items make my customers feel good about themselves when they wear them. Whether it’s a shirt or a handbag; if they feel more confident and happy, then I’m living my dream. I got to where I am today business-wise because I learned a lot from growing up in Las Vegas. In Las Vegas, you have to know how to hustle, stick and move. You have to have a drive and not be comfortable with being stagnant. I did a lot of networking and connecting with like-minded individuals throughout my years there. My passion for having my own brand grew when I would go to the MAGIC and AGENDA conventions that would be in town. I would have the chance to model, meet celebrities and I knew I wanted to be a part of the clothing industry. Was it easy? No. Lol. Because you can have so many ideas but no direction on where to start. Definitely didn’t have the money either and that’s something that you need in order to get where you’re going. Luckily for me, I wasn’t afraid to ask questions or do the research to figure out how I could really become an entrepreneur. In 2015, I started More Than Enough with business partners. That was a blog where we would feature other creatives to help promote/market them. Slowly but surely it became its own brand with clothing/accessories. At that time, that was my baby but in 2017 I had to make a personal decision to leave Las Vegas and move to DFW. I came here 3 years ago with two bags of luggage and barely $200 in my pocket. I was literally sleeping on my father’s dining room floor. That’s when I bought the domain TANAKADODDS.COM for my own Christmas gift to myself and made a promise to rebuild myself. I want the world to know that I’ve never given up and I’m here to share my story to always help people. You have to keep going, you can’t settle for less but most of all, you need to believe in yourself. I’m proud to say that’s exactly what my brand is about.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I love this question! I’m a very versatile and diverse woman so there’s the moment where I will eat at an upscale restaurant but I also love my down-to-earth spots like dive bars. If I’m looking for some good drinks with good vibes, we are definitely going to Parliament in Uptown Dallas. They have one of the best happy hours I’ve been to mixed with amazing customer service and dope music. Now, I love Asian food so if we are going to dinner and we need a view, we’re hitting up Sky Blossom in downtown Dallas. Super cute vibes, great Vietnamese food, and a rooftop. Love me a rooftop! Since it’s summertime coming up, knowing us girls we will need a pool so we would hang out at The Statler or Canvas Hotel. Perfect spots to swim, relax and vibe out. Now if we are looking for some karaoke vibes, we are heading to John B’s in Arlington. Super affordable, everyone is friendly and you’ll have an amazing time!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
This is dedicated to my family and friends who always believed in me from the beginning.
Instagram: @tanakadodds and @shoptanakadodds
Facebook: Shop TANAKA DODDS