FASHION LABEL: Morpeth’s Katie Maree McIntyre has launched her own online fashion business. Picture by STUART SCOTTKatie Maree McIntyre has taken her love for fashion and launched her own label online.

Simply called Katie Maree, the label caters to women who want quality evening ware with classic lines.

“It’s been a dream since I was little,” the 21-year-old from Morpeth said.

Miss McIntyre studied textiles and commerce at the All Saints College, Saint Mary’s campus, and has completed a Diploma in Fashion Design at Newcastle TAFE.

With that experience she has lovingly crafted a line of seven garments that form the winter range, in the competitive $70 to $190 price range, and will soon release her spring ­collection.

“I pride myself in using quality fabrics and I’m interested in making a classic, stylish look that’s always in trend,” she said.

Like many new businesses there have been challenges, but Ms McIntyre was committed to the long haul.

Since establishing a small workshop from her wages as a bar attendant, she has set up a website complete with online checkout and electronic payment facilities.

The challenges haven’t stopped there.

“Sourcing quality fabric was reasonably hard at the start too,” she said. “[But] the hardest thing is getting my name out there. Hopefully once people realise I’m a local designer with quality fabrics, [sales] might really get going.”

For the time being the young designer handles every aspect of the business from design to ­pattern making and sewing, along with the ­bookkeeping and online orders.

FASHION LABEL: Morpeth’s Katie Maree McIntyre has launched her own online fashion business. Picture by STUART SCOTT

Miss McIntyre wants to expand the business with the consignment of garments through ­boutique stores and put one or two sewers on the books.

There are strictly no plans to outsource the manufacturing, she said.

“I want to keep it all Australian-made which makes it a standout these days,” she said.

It helps that Miss McIntyre has a strong role model in her aunty, Lisa Brown, who has a ­successful label on the Gold Coast.

“I would love to go down that track and ­create a good name for myself,” Miss McIntyre said.

“It’s always interested me how designers can keep making new looks and reinventing past trends.”

Her future plans also extend to a range of casual ware.

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