Ep.9 – Building A Women’s Fashion Label: Running A Fashion Label in Your Spare Time

Building a women’s fashion label is not for the faint hearted.

For Ep.8 of the Surf Coast Creatives podcast, we sit down for a chat with the founder and creator of a boutique women’s fashion label, Maxted Clothing.

She’s hard-working, dedicated, tenacious and laser-focused. Her name is Caroline Teakle.

Caroline hails from England but now calls Torquay on the Surf Coast in Victoria home. She moved with her partner of 5 years Ed Maxted—hence the name Maxted Clothing.

Caroline has built her fashion label while working full-time form 9 to 5. As if the daily grind was hard enough. But it’s a testament to Caroline’s focus on building a women’s fashion label.

Building a women's fashion label with Caroline Teakle from Maxtead Clothing.
Building a women’s fashion label with Caroline Teakle from Maxted Clothing. Just one of her many chic designs for women’s knitwear.

Caroline has worked in fashion design for over a decade and started here career in one of the world’s fashion capitals: London.

She started with the boutique brand, Sara Berman (designed by sisters Amiee and Sara).

Starting at the Mecca of Vintage & Alternative Fashion

Caroline was part of the Sara Berman team. They designed the mainline for a brand stocked at many boutiques and department stores. The home base was the home of fashion in London, Camden.

She also made designs for Urban Outfitters & ASOS.

Caroline then worked on the collections of N.Peal and their main line of knitwear. Working here stirred stirried her passion for well-crafted pieces.

Caroline was excited with the chance to create fabric and knits. Not to mention having access to a never-ending variation of yarns and knitting styles. 

It was like I hadn’t realised how bloody fantastic knitwear was until that moment!

Caroline Teakle

In London. Caroline met and worked with many people across the British fashion retail industry, experienced the factory floors of the UK and selling collections.

It was an incredible start for this talented young designer. Whilst in London Caroline also worked with Sophie Cranston of Libelula. Sophie’s designs are much-adored by the future king’s wife, Kate Middleton.

Sophie and Caroline remain friends and Sophie fully supports Caroline and her brand Maxted. Both hope to work together again one day.

Caroline then moved to the British brand Burberry. A brand that was always a dream location on her career path. Caroline even wrote a paper on the difference between ‘Englishness and Britishness’ and how that’s portrayed in fashion branding.

Building A Women’s Fashion Label That You Can Call Your Own

But it was a long-held desire to travel which Caroline to move to Melbourne, Australia where Witchery quickly snaffled her talents before she moved to Cotton On

At Cotton On, Caroline was able to learn more about high street brands and the demands of the market designing their knitwear and outerwear collections. 

Caroline found these highly commercial brands very different from her experience in London; focusing on high volume, high margin, fast-fashion. 

After years in this market though Caroline began to enjoy it. She ended up laying claim to designing Cotton On’s bestselling knitwear piece. The piece sold over half a million units globally!

Why Maxted?

My father has always offered to help me set up my own brand and I have always said ‘no’.

But I read ‘Daring and Disruptive: Unleash the Entrepreneur’, by Lisa Messenger. Lisa set up The Collective and I said, “bugger it, I’m ready for the next thing and maybe it’s that I do it on my own.”

“I think I have enough experience now to give it a crack. Since I started designing the initial Maxted range I am so happy, it just feels right.”

“I wanted a brand name that would be as classic as the British brands I love. The name Maxted has a personal connection to me and it’s important to me that my influence on the brand resonates through every part of it, including the name,” Caroline said.

Maxted is now 3 years old and going strong from Caroline’s homebase in Torquay. She is all loved up with her partner Ed and dog Bracken and they are living the dream in Torquay.

Watch this space beacuse it is only get started we think!

Tune in NOW to hear Ep.8 of the Surf Coast Creatives podcast with you hosts Ben & Jess.

Give us a rating on iTunes and let us know wheat you think. Otherwise download wherever you get your favourite podcasts!

See ya!

Ben Hucker is the founder and host of the Surf Coast Creatives podcast. He’s a former financial markets guy who left the city in 2017 and moved to the Surf Coast in Victoria, Australia. Tune in for a weekly episode of the Surf Coast Creatives podcast. Each episode is packed full of hints and tips on creativity, health, business, mindset and a good dose of inspirationAll this with creatives entrepreneurs on the Surf Coast in Victoria, Australia.

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