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Drapers 30 Under 30 2018: Archie Hewlett, founder and chief executive, Duke & Dexter

Age: 23



His best career advice: “Take the time to really nail what it is you are setting out to achieve.”

Although he is just 23, Duke & Dexter founder Archie Hewlett has already built a thriving brand worn by Oscar-winners and music stars. He started the premium footwear label in 2014, aged 19, after deciding a place studying psychology at Durham University and a career in recruitment were not for him.

He spotted a gap in the market for a more affordable take on the classic velvet slipper. Duke & Dexter has since expanded its product line-up to become a fully fledged footwear brand, and was named one of Walpole’s Brands of Tomorrow in 2017.

“It has been an immense pleasure to mentor Duke & Dexter for the past 12 months,” says Walpole chairman and Harrods managing director Michael Ward. “It always amazes me how much you personally get from working with exceptionally driven individuals who are so passionate about their brand.”

Despite his impressive achievements at such a young age, Hewlett also knows when to take things at a slightly slower pace.

“The main advice I’d pass on to other entrepreneurs is never try and go too quickly. Sometimes, things happen fast but not for the right reasons,” he tells Drapers.


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