While NADINE MERABI is now known for its intricate and detailed jumpsuits, pantsuits, and luxe pajama sets, founder, Nadine Merabi, started the brand as a necessity during her time as an event planner. After ending her career as a professional field hockey player representing the UK, Merabi found herself organizing and planning events in popular nightlife venues all over the UK. As her business grew she ran into one problem- she no longer had enough outfits to wear. Merabi also didn’t want to spend a few thousand pounds on a single dress so she took matters into her own hands by making her own outfits.
When women first started asking where she got her dresses from, she would tell them that she bought the dress from a local London designer or vintage shop. Over time the demand for her designs became stronger and she knew she was onto something. “My time in events was when the idea for NADINE MERABI was conceived. I’d always been interested in fashion, but it really changed for me when I was working evening jobs. I constantly needed something new to wear and couldn’t find anything I liked in stores so I decided to just do it myself! Beyond the idea itself, this time taught me lots of business skills that are relevant in my role today and instilled a can-do attitude. Things are always unpredictable in events and it teaches you to always be on your toes, never give up, and be resilient regardless of what is thrown at you,” she shared.
After having success at a popup, Merabi quit her job as an event planner to pursue her brand full-time. NADINE MERABI grew rapidly in popularity due to one-of-a-kind fabrics paired with bodices that fit well on every woman. The brilliance behind Merabi’s designs comes down to building a collection around unique fabrics or patterns, “A lot of the time it starts with the fabric and then developing something I hope will make people feel amazing about themselves. I’m very led by the fabric because it tells me exactly what it wants to be. Plain fabrics tend to be more classic and understated. Then we do a lot of beaded fabrics for the statement pieces. From start to finish, we create all our patterns, make our own bespoke fabrics, and then twill up the initial sample in-house, making sure it is exactly how we envision it. The fit of a garment is so important to me, which means I’m very hands-on with every aspect of the design.”
Less than a year after starting NADINE MERABI, her designs were all over Selfridges while celebrities and influencers were wearing the designs. With custom During the pandemic, NADINE MERABI had a massive uptick due to its feathery silk pajamas that consistently sold out. In addition to Fall/Winter and Spring/Summer, the brand has also created specific collections around bridal, occasion wear and resort wear. Since 2020 the brand has seen triple-digit growth in both turnover and profitability globally with revenues increasing from $2.5 Million in 2020 to $20.4 Million in 2021. “We are a global brand with 45% sales from the UK, 45% from the United States, and 10% from Europe and the rest of the world. The US continues to be a massive market for us and we’re delighted to continue to grow and develop in this region, but we love that our customers are wearing MERABI all over the world. We invested in a larger distribution center to keep up with the demand for our international orders. It feels like we’ve only just begun and have big plans for the rest of 2023 and beyond,” Merabi explained about the brand’s growth.
As NADINE MERABI approaches the ten-year mark, the focus is continued on international expansion and wholesale accounts. Marabi’s advice on transitioning careers when you feel like you “can’t”- do it anyways, “I would say to just stick to what your goal is and don’t ever feel intimidated or that you are undereducated. Don’t feel that you have to be trained in a certain way- I was all self-taught, with no real fashion/design education, and sometimes that can help because you don’t develop fear. You just have to believe in yourself and your designs. Also don’t ever listen to anyone that says you can’t do it. They are too afraid to follow their dreams. You aren’t!”