Julie gives up-and-coming designer a helping hand

From left, Julie Blackie and James and Nikki Boyle. Picture by Angela Carrington.
From left, Julie Blackie and James and Nikki Boyle. Picture by Angela Carrington.

An online streetwear store has launched with the backing of one of the UK’s most successful fashion entrepreneurs from the Ponteland area.

The Paradice brand is the brainchild of designer James Boyle, from Gateshead, who is deaf and uses a cochlear implant to help him to hear.

He had a difficult time at school and had to work extra hard to catch up on his studies, which affected his confidence and self-belief.

But with the help of his sister Nikki and Julie Blackie, from online fashion giants Pink Boutique, the future is looking good.

James initially discovered his massive potential when he created tie-dyed T-shirts, influenced by club and rave culture and 70s interior design among other things, to sell in order to fund a place at university.

He sold out within hours and with Nikki’s support, decided to sacrifice his university place to follow his dreams.

As well as sourcing suppliers, the renowned Pink Boutique brand came on board and it has offered financial assistance, office space and guidance when required.

Julie, director of Pink Boutique, said: “I recognised their talent, but realised that they needed extra support in marketing their clothing and general business acumen.

“I can’t help seeing a similarity in how Pink Boutique started life with a small amount of cash and big ideas.”