Zip Us In Has Launched A Maternity Range, Called ALTERNITY®.

Launched in 2014, Zip Us In (who are best known for their maternity jacket expander panels) has launched a brand new maternity wear range, called ALTERNITY®.

Zip Us In (as seen on Dragons’ Den) has spent the last year creating the ALTERNITY® range: an ever-evolving, clever clothing line, which has been designed to fit customers for a lifetime, regardless of how their body may change before, during, or after pregnancy.

The brand was Founded by Kate Bell, a mother of two lovely girls, but like many great entrepreneurs, her journey to success certainly wasn’t straightforward. 20 odd years ago, Kate was celebrating her first wedding anniversary with her childhood sweetheart.

However, a significant speed-bump would change the course of her life as she knew it. Kate’s husband unexpectedly divorced her, leaving her as a single parent, and with her modest dream of a lovely home – completely shattered into pieces. Not long after, Kate was forced to go back to work, so she took on a role in advertising sales for a city newspaper, before eventually launching her own marketing agency, which grew from strength to strength.

All hope was not lost, though. In 2007, Kate married again. A few years later in February 2013 (on a cold visit to Weymouth), Kate had reached the point in her pregnancy where her growing belly could no longer fit into the Berghaus jacket she had bought just a few weeks before discovering that she was pregnant again.

So… She had a choice. She could either invest in a maternity coat that would cost her £80, or she could try to make it through the final three months with what she had. But with so many other things to buy for her new arrival, Kate chose the second option. She ended up wearing her jacket with her belly sticking through the open zip.

Kate mentioned to her husband that there must a way to expand her existing jacket. Well, she was wrong. A quick Google search showed her that no such item existed. So Kate turned to her mother to help her create the first sample, which consisted of a panel of a waterproof soft-shell that she could zip straight into her own jacket.

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Following this move, the entrepreneur in Kate re-surfaced, and she got to work. It wasn’t long before the panel design was submitted for a patent, and Kate found the right person to produce her Zip Us In panels to order. And with twelve years’ experience of running her own marketing agency, it didn’t take her long to get eyeballs on her new brand.

Kate then launched another product, again from a personal need. During her daughter’s early months, she would have her baby strapped in a carrier, as she loved having her close to her, but it was a ten-minute job to get ready to leave the house, so she built on the original jacket expander idea, but she made it work with baby carriers, too.

I believed that the product I had developed would not only save customers money during pregnancy, but it would provide an incredibly useful solution for parents when baby-wearing. The ability to cut down the risk of a baby overheating when in a carrier was a huge benefit, and the buyers at high street stores, Boots, and Go Outdoors agreed,” said Kate.

Less than a decade on, and the growth of Kate’s business has been astounding.

Now, Zip Us In products are available in 32 different countries, via high street stores such as Go Outdoors, small independent retailers, and online shops. Also, Kate’s products have won eight different industry awards, and she was a winner of the 2017 ‘Entrepreneur of The Year’ by Barclays.

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