Business: Doncaster Clothing
Location: Agencies with home sellers in Northfield and in Egg Harbor Township
Owner: Rachael Lodgek, of Linwood
Doncaster Clothing is a family-owned and operated company started in North Carolina in 1931. It was the first direct-sales clothing company for women. It has built a reputation for offering impeccable quality and design in its clothing. The clothes are made of European fabrics. It’s a private-label designer line of clothes, similar to Burberry and Chanel but at a more affordable price point.The clothes range from casual to couture, from very wearable to special occasion and formal pieces. I think of them as reliable clothes you can wear year after year. The line is sold exclusively through private trunk shows hosted by a Doncaster stylist. The stylist is trained each season on every piece of the collection, which allows them to know the uniqueness of the fabric, the cut of the clothes and the current trends.
For one week four times a year, the stylist converts part of her home into a high-end boutique to showcase the collection. While this is a new concept for some women, they quickly learn that it’s truly a personal shopping experience that is fun, no pressure and an exclusive way to shop. It gives them a chance to try on designer clothes as they please and build a wardrobe to fit their lifestyle, their shape and budget. I’m the district sales leader for southern New Jersey, and I hire and train the stylists and help them build the clientele for their shows. Our Northfield agency includes Susan Giannantonio of Northfield, and Debbie Hall of Linwood. Our agency in Egg Harbor Township is represented by Karen Hale of Egg Harbor Township. Pieces start at $50, which includes casual items such as tanks, tees and jewelry and accessories. The couture pieces, such as a fantastic tweed or leather, would be $600 to $700.
Entry: I was a dancer and dance teacher, and grew up in Australia and moved here 15 years ago. I saw there was a market for this type of personal service. I decided to give personal wardrobing a try four years ago.
The future: My territory is from Monmouth County to Cape May. I’d like to have a stylist in each town.