How Designer Wayne Hemingway Paid the Rent with Vintage Clothing

British designer Wayne Hemingway has been dressing rockstars like the Stone Roses since 1982. He started his Red or Dead label with his then-girlfriend (now wife) after successfully selling their fashions for much-needed rent money. “We had to find some money or we’d get kicked out,” Wayne tells the Telegraph. “We’d read in Time Out that a new bit of Camden Market [in London] was opening and so we decided to go there and try to sell some of our clothes.” Their side project eventually turned into a full-time gig that paid the rent—and then some.

image 1981 – A 20-year-old Hemingway standing in front of his secondhand clothing stall in Camden Market, London.

After just eight weeks of vending, the Hemingways were making £10,000 every weekend. “It all happened so fast. By the time [the above] photo was taken we had 10 stalls,” he recalls. “Shortly afterward we got another stall in Kensington Market, where Geradine sold her handmade clothes, which is where we got spotted by a buyer from Macy’s in New York.” The rest, as they say, is history.

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