Meet Jade Goulden, one half of the brother and sister team behind streetwear brand Jaded London
Launched in 2013 by siblings Grant and Jade Goulden, Jaded London has attracted an impressive list of stockists, including ASOS, Selfridges and Topshop, as well as celebrity fans such as Beyoncé, Taylor Swift and Cara Delevingne. Here, Jade – who runs the womenswear side of the business – tells Drapers what’s next for the brand, and why the synergy between herself and her brother is the secret to Jaded’s success.
Can you tell us a bit about your background?
Our family has been in the fashion business for three generations, so fashion is in our blood. I have always known that I wanted to be involved in the industry, so after school I went to study fashion marketing at the London College of Fashion. I then landed my dream job on the branded buying team at ASOS, which gave me a great understanding about what the consumer wants. Once my brother Grant graduated from university we decided to start our own brand. Jaded London launched in September 2013.
Why did you decide to start your own label?
Grant and I had recognised a gap in the market for streetwear at an affordable price point, so we began creating a distinctive unisex collection of pieces featuring unique photographic prints.
What was the biggest challenge starting out?
Our biggest challenge was that we had to manufacture a large number of orders in a very short space of time, before being able to build a solid supply chain. It takes companies years to manage their supply base to the full potential but in our first season we had just six weeks to deliver to stores following the launch.
What’s it like working with your brother? What do you each bring to the business?
My experience from Asos.com has taught me to design with a commercial awareness of the customer. Grant has a great eye for menswear – he designs the whole menswear collection and he’s very business savvy. We make a great team. It is very difficult to switch off from the business and not talk about Jaded constantly outside of work - this drives our friends and family a bit mad. But it’s great to have the support of your sibling through stressful periods. Being family, we are also very honest with each other, so this speeds up key decisions.
How would you describe the Jaded London aesthetic?
The aesthetic is trend-focused streetwear. The men’s collection has a lot of retro influences but the design is very clean. Womenswear is sexy and fun, with lots of attitude. [Wholesale prices range from £12 for a crop top to £35 for a sequin bomber jacket.]
What inspires your designs?
We are inspired by global street style; we love to see which trends are emerging in different cities such as LA, Tokyo and London. Plain and simple doesn’t really excite us. We love anything a bit over the top. Our customer really loves to make a statement with what they wear.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
When our first collection was picked up by a number of really prestigious retailers. It’s also been amazing to see global superstars such as Beyoncé and Taylor Swift wearing Jaded.
What’s the best thing about your job?
The best part of running the brand is designing clothes that people love to wear. We love to see our customers post their outfits on Instagram, and it’s great to see people wearing Jaded in the street.
And the worst?
There is never any down time. We both work round the clock as fashion never sleeps.
What’s been the best piece of career advice you’ve ever received?
If you believe in your product, never give up. Keep striving to achieve.
What’s next for Jaded London? Do you have any plans for the year ahead?
We are expanding the brand into a number of different product categories, including denim, beauty accessories and, potentially, lingerie. We are also trying to expand our global footprint. We’re aiming to gain stockists in countries that we may not have targeted previously.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time, outside of running your business?
I love travelling and seeing new cultures; it’s a huge source of inspiration.