Ever dreamed of packing in your day job and starting your own fashion label? Many do, but few actually go ahead and do it. Meet Jade Goulden, who did exactly that in the summer of 2013...
Having worked at various design houses such as Burberry and Vera Wang, and most recently as a buyer for ASOS, Jade decided to go out on a limb and do what she’d always dreamed of. A year later Beyoncé was photographed wearing Jaded London. If that isn’t inspiring, we don’t know what is.
Marie Claire meets the woman behind one of London’s hottest street label…
Why did you decide to start your own clothing label?
We set-up Jaded London in the summer of 2013. After two successful years working at ASOS I decided to use the business skills I had learnt and my commercial eye to take a big risk and start my own label. My family have worked in the fashion industry for three generations. I have grown up around the business and learnt the trade from my father. I saw the growth in the market for streetwear so decided to develop an exciting range for a young demographic. My brother, Grant, graduated university at the same time, he has a far better knowledge than me of men’s fashion and trends so we decided to work together to develop a unisex brand.
How did you go about starting up?
We began with designing 20 prints based on current trends. We then sampled these designs in several UK factories. As a start-up brand, minimizing costs was crucial so we pulled a few favours and shot the samples on friends in a skate park in Camden to produce our lookbook. We set-up a website with all our imagery and then cold-called buyers to start selling the collection.
How did your experience as a buyer help you?
It gave me a great commercial eye and helped me to understand what the consumer wants rather than designing solely for my taste only.
Where there any aspects to the process of setting up a business that surprised you?
I didn’t realise how many elements are involved within the production process as you have to be on top of everything to ensure the end product is produced to a high standard.
Did you have to make any sacrifices?
I work seven days a week. My job doesn’t stop so I don’t have much time to socalise with friends anymore.
What top five tips would you give to someone looking to start their own business?
– Be determined
– Be willing to work hard, it won’t come to you
– Be prepared to take risks as you might not receive a steady wage anymore
– Don’t be afraid to use all your contacts, you never know who may help you
– Great product is key everything else will fall into place
Who’s your style icon?
What’s been the most amazing moment for the brand so far?
When Beyoncé wore our honeycomb skirt and diamond crop sweat walking out of my favourite store in the world – Colette in Paris. Also seeing my diamond zoom joggers on a mannequin in the Selfridges window.
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Who would you love to see in your designs?
Rihanna, Pharrel and Kanye West.
Who’s the Jaded individual?
Jaded London is for the independent free-thinker with a style as bold as their attitude.
What inspires you?
Catwalk trends, blogs, street art. Anything can inspire me.
What’s on the horizon for Jaded?
We have sourced new fabrics and developed new prints.
Who inspires you?
Designers such as Karl Largerfield who have been in the industry for decades and manage to keep their collections fresh and exciting.
What’s your motto?
Keeping going, never give up.
How would your friends describe you in three words?
Hardworking, bolshy and stylish.
For more career advice and inspiration, visit our MC@Work section.
Looking for more career inspo? It’s not too late to book tickets for Marie Claire’s @ Work Live, in association with Cointreau and Next. A one-day event on 23 April 2016, featuring advice, tips and inspiration from incredible speakers.