Edinburgh designer looks to go big with her jazzy trouser 'Party Pants' designs thanks to start-up boost

The trousers feature different trims, such as frills, tassels and pom-poms.The trousers feature different trims, such as frills, tassels and pom-poms.
The trousers feature different trims, such as frills, tassels and pom-poms.
The distinctive, sustainable garments feature different trims, such as frills, tassels and pom-poms.

An Edinburgh-based sustainable fashion brand has launched its first collection of “jazzy trousers” thanks to funding from a UK government-backed start-up support scheme.

Eilidh Gibson, a Glasgow School of Art graduate, is behind the Party Pants range, which encompasses three styles available in women’s sizes eight to 16, with plans to expand the size line-up and colours as the business grows.

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Gibson used her product design background and self-taught sewing skills to create pairs of trousers for herself and friends, with different trims - such as frills, tassels and pom-poms. After wearing them to events and a music festival where people wanted to buy their own pair, she decided to start her distinctive clothing line.

Now, alongside a full-time career as a senior service designer for a major banking group, Gibson has transformed her idea into a business thanks to a five-figure funding package from the British Business Bank’s Start Up Loans programme and DSL Business Finance. Party Pants works only with ethical and sustainable suppliers, with the garments manufactured locally.

Gibson said: “I’ve always been interested in fashion and design, and I wanted to make a garment that was flattering for all body types. Clothes allow people to reflect their personality, so the frills, tassels and pom-poms on the trousers are a great way to do that - it adds some fun to your wardrobe. Sustainability was also a big focus and I have carefully chosen ethical suppliers and partners that have the same values.”

Barry McCulloch, senior manager, UK network, Scotland at the British Business Bank, said: “The Start Up Loans programme helps entrepreneurs like Eilidh to access funding and support, enabling them to start and grow a viable business. Eilidh’s design background has allowed her to follow her dreams and turn something that started as a hobby into a viable new business idea.”

The Start-Up Loans Company, part of the British Business Bank, was formed in June 2012. Funding for the Start Up Loans programme is provided by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS).

Iain Burnside, loan officer at DSL Business Finance, added: “Eilidh’s journey with Party Pants exemplifies the power of combining creativity and entrepreneurship.”



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