Withnell branding labels for garments

The Birth of Withnell

WITHNELL is much more than a clothing brand.   WITHNELL  is about mindful choices and a slower way of being. For me it is also a personal journey full of discovery, excitement and challenge. Taking a leap of faith means silencing that little voice of doubt inside, feeling the fear yet still  going through with  it in order to do what makes your soul sing.  

Paula Roworth in her Withnell studio.

 That little voice of doubt can be powerful.  And because of it, WITHNELL may  never have happened. Sometimes the easy path won't take you to your destination.   My love for making, art, fashion, and design is a part of me that has always been.   It developed from a young age with role play, mud and environmental objects. I have always loved being outdoors and nature is a huge inspiration.  I was neither encouraged or discouraged to follow my own path. It was always my choice.  



 I qualified as a fashion designer and have had  a successful career working for UK manufacturers.  I travelled to so many exciting place around Europe, Paris, Florence, Amsterdam and more.   However I became disillusioned by the rapid move towards fast fashion and  cheap imports. So for a while I took a step back and I focused on my family which eventually led me into teaching. Teaching early years children is wonderful and creative and fun. But I couldn’t deny that something was missing I couldn't quite put my finger on it.   I  knew though that I didn’t have the time to explore my own creative self. 
And then something pretty amazing happened.  I decided that it would be better to have an  OOPs than a WHAT IF so I  quit my well - payed job to return to  a creative path. That sounds rash and careless, I did have some savings and new I had enough to fund my ideas.  The relief was immediate and my inner creativity was allowed to flourish.    My  friends actually congratulated me and  they were genuinely happy for me!   I cautiously dug out my dream, I knew I wanted to work with sustainable resources and be a part of the slow fashion movement so I began researching and developing ideas. I took the time to build my own pattern blocks so that I had a foundation for my designs. I felt more like my natural self and sad that I'd suppressed my creativity.   I’m just so glad that I didn’t  leave it any longer.    



Finally, ideas for WITHNELL emerged and I new I wanted to take the responsible path as a designer. I wanted WITHNELL to be slow fashion, mindful, considered and sustainable.  Quality over quantity was key.   I was hopeful and new that I would need to carve out a niche and grow slowly in order to build  a strong foundation .  

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