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How to Set Up & Run Fashion Label by Toby Meadows

Posted by Lynnette Murphy on Jul 18, 2013

I absolutely adore How to Set Up and Run a Fashion Label by Toby Meadows and I thoroughly recommend it to anyone who is either thinking of starting a fashion business or need to understand how todays fashion Industry works. It is an inspiring read even if you are not thinking of starting your own business. Whether you are a student, a graduates or an entrepreneur considering your next step in the fashion world; this book is the perfect place to start.

Toby Meadows works as an industry consultant and a visiting lecturer at the London College of Fashion; he is also a Director of London based womenswear label Belle & Bunty favoured by celebrities such as Victoria Beckham and Lindsay Lohan. Toby founded and runs Three’s Company Creative Consultancy, a collective of fashion professionals who provide creative and business services to the fashion industry. He also acts as a consultant to the Centre for Fashion Enterprise “London’s pioneering Fashion Business Incubator.”


Toby’s book provides an easy to follow, step-by-step guide of everything you need to know about creating a fashion business. Starting with a general introduction into the world of fashion, the book goes on to address issues such as how to organize the manufacture and production of a clothing range, think about trends, manage your label’s image and target market and how to use marketing and PR to make your business a success.

But the book also helps the reader to focus on questions such as: should you set up working from home or a rent a small workshop? What are the qualities required to be your own boss and what kind of business legal structure you should consider creating? How to keep on top of Finance? Each chapters includes a fascinating case study covering brands like Christopher Raeburn who believes in sustainable fashion and Anne Fontaine who started in her early twenties a successful shirt business and never looked back.

Besides assisting the readers answer vital questions, the book act as an excellent map to navigate many aspects of the industry. The range of issues addressed is broad and some readers may feel the need to further investigate some subjects. Tony provides excellent recommendations for resources and additional reading.

How to Set Up and Run a Fashion Label has been translated in six languages. It is also in its second edition; so it is totally up to date especially with the fast changing world of social networking giving great advice on how to get customers interested in your fashion product via the internet.

Toby’s book is not an academic textbook or a coffee table book full of glossy images; it is a useful tool that you can pick up and put down as and when you are ready for each section. The book is very easy to follow and includes key points to follow-up at the end of each chapter. The graphs and lists are easy to understand and the layout is clean and modern. There are pictures to inspire and diagrams and sketches to guide you.


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I have used the first edition of this book extensively in my teaching and also in my own business ventures. I am a lecturer in fashion design and marketing; I always recommend this book to my students. I also run my own small-scale business and some of Toby’s advices have been very useful to me.


There are lots of books around discussing how to set up in business and how to be an entrepreneur but very few are specific to the fashion industry. Fashion is a unique industry and that can be quite challenging at times. This is why this book is so helpful and essential to those about to make the exciting leap of setting up their own fashion label.


How to Set Up and Run a Fashion Label

By Toby Meadows

Laurence King Publishing
Language: English
Paperback, 164 illustrations, 200 pages
248 x 174 mm
ISBN 9781856698931
Published August 2012 (2nd edition)



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Written by Lynette Murphy

Lynette Murphy

After leaving Kingston University in 1976 with a 2-1 degree in Fashion with textiles, Lynnette worked for 4 years as a design consultant for Deryck Healey International. During this time she worked internationally designing ranges for large corporate brands like ICI and Courtaulds. After which Lynnette worked for a year as a jeanswear designer for Levi Strauss and was based in Bangalore India for a short while. It was there she learnt a lot about production on a large scale. Also found a passion for menswear clothing.

In 1980 Lynnette moved into Trend Forecasting, initially working for a small company called Design Intelligence based in Covent Garden and then in 1984, with four friends they set up their own Trend Bureau called I.N.D.E.X (International Design Exchange) working with design companies like DKNY, Calvin Klein and Marks & Spencers, Debenhams and John Lewis. This enterprise was backed by a Belgian textile mill called UCO helped by a maverick entrepreneur called Jacques Fruy.

After 10 years, Lynnette decided that with all her experience she wanted to go into teaching. After gaining a teaching qualification and an MA in Design Studies from Central Saint Martins, Lynnette now teaches a series of short courses at University of the Arts. In 2004 Lynnette started a course called ‘How to start your own fashion Business’. Lynnette likes to think that she has inspired many young people to start businesses. The course is always over subscribed and has been popular for the last 8 years. This website includes case studies of some of my ex-students’s business start-ups and also advice about how to do it yourself.