Edinburgh designer’s Party Pants promise to be the perfect pair
The designer behind a new Edinburgh-based sustainable fashion brand has launched her first collection of Party Pants, a range of jazzy trousers with quirky trims after receiving a funding boost from the Start up Loans programme.
Founded by Eilidh Gibson, a Glasgow School of Art graduate, the debut designs from the brand include three styles available in women’s sizes eight to sixteen, with plans to expand the size range and colourways as the business grows.
Eilidh 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 – giving each pair its own personality. After wearing them to events and a music festival where people wanted to buy their own pair, Eilidh decided to start her Party Pants clothing line.
Now, alongside a full-time career as a senior service designer for a major banking group, Eilidh has turned her side hustle into a business thanks to a £25,000 funding package from the British Business Bank’s Start up Loans programme and DSL Business Finance.
By focusing on one garment type, Eilidh hopes to help shoppers with the overwhelming decision-making process when shopping online with thousands of choices. Customers can find exactly what they are looking for with the reassurance that the trousers are designed to fit different body shapes.
In contrast to fast fashion brands, Party Pants works only with ethical and sustainable suppliers, with the garments manufactured locally. High-quality fabrics ensure the trousers are durable and remain functional for many years.
In the future, Eilidh hopes to offer an additional service where Party Pants owners can swap out the trouser trims for a new design, keeping the same pair in their wardrobe for even longer.
Eilidh 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. I did some market research, speaking to 150 people and almost 90% of them struggled to find trousers that fit both their waist and thighs. This is a problem I’ve had, and what first got me into sewing.
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.
Party Pants are designed to last, unlike a lot of the fast fashion that is available on the high street and I hope people find the same joy from wearing them as I do.”
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.
Importantly, sustainability is at the core of the design ethos for Party Pants, something that’s really important to the British Business Bank and it’s great we’re supporting Party Pants. We look forward to seeing the results of the first collection.”
Iain Burnside, loan officer at DSL Business Finance, added: “Eilidh’s journey with Party Pants exemplifies the power of combining creativity and entrepreneurship. We are delighted to have supported her vision with the business loan, enabling her to transform her passion into a sustainable fashion brand.
Eilidh’s commitment to ethical practices aligns perfectly with our values, and we are excited to see Party Pants flourish in the industry.”