Relaunched Baggers Originals secures first-of-its-kind deal with Monsoon

Global retailer Monsoon stocks Northumberland-based Baggers Originals products for first time in 40-year history

Designer Jessica McCarthy, right, with her mother Angela McClean, who founded Baggers Originals in the 1980s
Designer Jessica McCarthy, right, with her mother Angela McClean, who founded Baggers Originals in the 1980s

A young designer, entrepreneur and model has secured a deal with global retailer Monsoon that will see her innovative childenswear products stocked in 25 stores.

Northumberland-based Baggers Originals, which produces a range of fashionable rainwear that folds conveniently into an attached inside pocket, was first established by Angela McLean in the late 1980s. The business enjoyed international success but eventually went into liquidation due to cashflow difficulties.

Now, it has been resurrected with Mrs McLean’s daughter Jessica McCarthy as owner and Mrs McLean as managing director.

The deal marks the first time in Monsoon’s 40-year history that it has sold a brand other than its own.

“When my mother created the brand in the ‘80s, it was really popular with young families,” said Mrs McCarthy, who modelled for Baggers as a child.

“Baggers won many national awards and the products, which all fold into an inside pocket to form an easy-to-carry bag, were loved by parents and children alike. I have always wanted to re-launch the brand and so far we are having a really great response to the products.”

Mrs McLean added: “People used to contact me and ask me about it, so we started doing some research and decided to go for it again. The timing is good as lots of people who wore Baggers as children are now parents themselves.

“Retro is also a big thing at the moment, and we’ve had a fantastic response so far from people who remember the brand.”

For Mrs McCarthy - who still works as a model and is married to international rugby player Mike McCarthy - the new business venture represents the latest in a long line of entrepreneurial successes.

The 29-year-old, who also runs a business called Garbeau, producing made-to-measure shirts and suits for men, has previously appeared on the BBC programme Be Your Own Boss.

She has also met with Prime Minister David Cameron at Downing Street and was invited to speak at the national Conservative Party Conference to showcase her business start-up.

Beginning online, the relaunched Baggers has been selling both boys’ and girls’ rainwear for children up to eight years old.

But given the increased promotional demands on digital-only businesses, the mother-and-daughter team decided to move into the traditional retail market as well.

“We looked around and thought that Monsoon would present some fantastic opportunities,” said Mrs McLean. “They loved the brand and we’ve worked with them very closely.

“They wanted to support a young entrepreneur, so it’s been a good move for them and a nice vote of confidence for us.”

The Moonson Childrenswear outfits have been created using a classic floral design print from the Monsoon archives. They will be available from September 8 in 25 stores across the UK, Ireland and internationally, as well as on monsoon.co.uk.

A Monsoon spokesperson said: “Baggers Originals is a fun, practical product that both parents and children love. It is very exciting as this is the first time Monsoon Childrenswear has ever collaborated with another brand.

“We are using one of our statement heritage prints on the design which makes them an extra special product.”

Baggers Originals will launch additional products, including a swimwear range following the same concept, for Spring 2015.

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