As Scoop International is approaching fast (it starts end of this week), I want to share with you an interview we did with Karen Radley, its founder, back in May. Karen is a go-getter and hence is part of our inspiring women series . Those women make things happen. They live life with no regrets. They are learning about themselves and reaching their full potential. They are not afraid to take risks and just go for it. I talked to Karen about her mission, challenges and future plans with the show.
Side note: If you haven’t heard of Scoop International, it is the UK’s leading boutique trade show offering a diverse mix of ready-to-wear, accessories, footwear, jewellery, perfumery and a whole host of lifestyle products. The show’s unique aesthetic, fusing fashion and art, attracts an exclusive mix of home grown and international labels, new and established designers and some of the biggest and hottest names in the industry, many of which choose Scoop as their only trade platform.
Here is the interview…
Tell us what has been your journey so far and why did you decide to start Scoop International? How did you spot the need for it in the market?
I launched Scoop in February 2011, but had the idea in my mind for years. Whilst working for DKNY scarves I used to travel to Como in Italy with leading department store buyers and on one of these trips I mentioned my idea for a contemporary designer trade show, every occasion the buyer and I subsequently met she asked me about my project, so in the end I researched hard and some 6 years later in mid December 2010 I had the opportunity to launch the first ever Scoop and 8 weeks later with 50 labels. Fast forward to 2017 we now boast some 250 contemporary designer collections – quite a journey.
What was the biggest challenge for you when setting up the first Scoop International show?
I only had 8 weeks to pull the show together – both exhibitors and buyers! I called in many favours from friends and contacts within the fashion industry. By mid-January 2011 with the show looming in February 2011 I realised I had spent 4 weeks over the Christmas period contacting potential exhibitors and not started on reaching out to buyers and had to get my skates on calling retailers and department stores – a big challenge.
You seem to support and give the opportunity to niche designers to showcase their collections and products to buyers and trade. What can they do their part to ensure that they get the maximum out of the show?
I believe designers should present co-ordinated and fresh collections, well thought out and keenly priced and produced by a high standard factory or studio.
As someone who has been in the fashion industry and business for a long time, what would be your 3 tips or advice to any new niche designer?
My 3 tips would be as follows:
- Be true to themselves
- Learn and love pattern making
- Think creatively
What are your plans for Scoop International in the future?
To always deliver an interesting and fresh show every season!
This article was first published in ESTILA VOLUME 3 – THE BLOSSOM GIRL. If you wish to get the print copy for your future reference, you can purchase it here. Atelier of Success members get 20% discount. You can request to join our business club for creatives and designers here.