Daily Telegraph Published on: | August 20, 2018 7:51pm
Louise Starkey, Reporter, Manly Daily
Clothing brand Chaotic Clothing’s booms with ‘king size’ range A NORTHERN beaches clothing shop has launched its latest men’s collection of T-shirts, hoodies and jackets up to 7XL — and sales for the king size range are booming as the company intends to fill a ‘massive gap in the market’.
Corey Strozer and Brent Mannell at Dee Why Rock Pool. Picture: Adam Yip / Manly Daily
RIDING on the wave of the women’s fashion body positivity movement, a Beacon Hill clothing brand has expanded its range of gear to incorporate plus-size men, too.
Chaotic Clothing, a men’s and women’s streetwear apparel line founded in 2013, has launched its latest collection of T-shirts, hoodies and jackets in sizes up to 7XL.
Co-owner and director Brent Mannell, who ventured into the business with his wife Jacqueline, said Chaotic Clothing expanded its sizing range to be more inclusive of larger men wanting to look their best.
Mr Strozer models some of Chaotic Clothing’s new king range, developed by Mr Mannell. Picture: Adam Yip
Mr Mannell’s personal struggles of not being able to find comfortable, stylish clothing when he tipped the scales at 136kg was another reason to open business doors to catering to a larger clientele.
In the first 48 hours since launching recently, the 31-year-old managed to sell 50 orders to people nationwide wanting Chaotic Clothing’s new kingsize range.
“Having a bigger body and being a bigger bloke is nothing to be ashamed of,” Mr Mannell said.
“I, myself, have a healthy appetite for eating and I don’t think men should be punished for that.
The pair, showing off another T-shirt, at the Chaotic Clothing headquarters at Beacon Hill. Picture: Annika Enderborg
“There aren’t as many clothing options out there for bigger men as there are curvy women and that’s why we wanted to expand our range.
“Men should be able to have the option of wearing clothing they feel comfortable and confident in.”
Corey Strozer — a 23-year-old chosen by Mr Mannell to model and represent Chaotic Clothing’s latest range — said the label’s expansion was exciting as it was a positive step forward for body inclusivity in men’s fashion.
Mr Mannell said he expanded the brand’s range of sizes as he knew what it was like shopping for clothes when he tipped the scales at 136kg.
He encouraged other clothing businesses to follow Chaotic Clothing as “there is a massive gap in the market that’s needing to be filled”.
“I have nothing against Lowes Menswear but I don’t want to have to go there and buy a big Hawaiian T-shirt,” Mr Strozer said.
“I want to buy something I feel good, confident and sexy in.
“As a bigger person, it can be embarrassing going into a store that doesn’t have your size or has a separate area for bigger people with corny names like big boys.
In the first 48 hours since launching recently, 50 people ordered clothes in Chaotic Clothing’s new king-size range, the 31-year-old managed to sell 50 orders to people nationwide wanting Chaotic Clothing’s new kingsize range.
“We just want to have the option of dressing the same as everybody else.
“I just hope other businesses see that there is a market there for larger people wanting clothes and things start to change.”
A couple who started making T-shirts with comical slogans from their spare bedroom a year ago, have quit their jobs, hired employees and moved house to accommodate their burgeoning business.
Brent and Jacqueline Mannell, from Elanora Heights, came up with the idea of printing their own shirts after Mr Mannell tried to buy one with a character from a British reality TV show on it and discovered with delivery it would cost him $60.
When he decided to design his own version, he couldn’t find anyone willing to print a one-off at a reasonable price. So, he did it himself and began printing his own and selling them for $25 via Facebook.
However, even they have been shocked at how Chaotic Clothing has taken off having sold $200,000 worth of T-shirts in the last 12 months.
“We’ve found that guys really care about how they look and what they wear,” said Mrs Mannell, 36.
“They want the latest slogan and they want one-offs so they can brag about it on Instagram,” she said.
“Some order a new T-shirt every week.”
Part of the couple’s research involves scouring social media to see what issues are trending and listening to the radio, to keep up-to-date on what people are talking about.
“We are producing urban street wear for the 18 to 25 year-olds. Whatever is trending, we try and jump on it,” said Mr Mannell, 28.
Their T-shirt venture has changed their lives.
The couple, who have two daughters Allegra 6, and Julia, 5, both work on the business, which also offers bulk purchases for corporate businesses.
While Mrs Mannell, 36, has reduced the number of days she works as a part-time travel agent, Mr Mannell has had to quit both of his two jobs working as a manager at a furniture retail shop and part-time at a pizza shop, when they couldn’t keep up with T-shirt orders.
They’ve also employed another person full-time and another to work on Monday, which is their busiest day, after everyone makes their order on Sunday.
“Our T-shirt business started as a bedroom project, then it started encroaching on the dining room and lounge, before we realised we needed to move to a bigger house,” said Mr Mannell.
“We’re now in a way bigger property with a double garage where all our printing machinery is.”
This month they are supporting Movember, where men are encouraged during the month of November to grow moustaches and raise money for men’s cancer charities and mental health.
Each T-shirt costs $25, with 25 per cent going to the Movember Foundation.
Go to facebook.com/chaoticclothing.
Original Daily Telegraph Article Can be Found Here: