The secret of my success: Wayne Hemingway

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Indy Lifestyle Online
Wayne Hemingway is the founder of Red or Dead and a fashion expert on 'The Big Breakfast'. He has recently documented his rags-to-riches story in the book, 'The Good, The Bad, The Ugly - Red Or Dead', out this month.

"I started out in 1981 with a view to either being a pop star or making money out of clubs. I came to London to go to university, and met my wife, Gerardine. We didn't have any money, so we emptied out our wardrobes which were full of second-hand clothes.

"We thought we could make money out of fashion and that started Red or Dead. From then on we were always going to jumble sales, finding old clothes, repairing them and selling them at Camden Market, in London. Within a few months we'd opened a stall in London's Kensington Market.

"I then went to work for EMI Records, and Gerardine spent all day in the Market. One day, Macy's from New York ordered 200 items. I packed in my job straight away. We carried on selling second-hand clothing and eventually had 16 stores.

"In the early days the amount of hours we put in was unbelievable. People think it's all about parties, glamour and London Fashion Week, but it's very hard work.

"From day one I never felt any fear of interviews. I'm very clear on my attitudes to fashion and style and I'm not fazed by TV cameras, which is why I ended up on The Big Breakfast.

"But I don't like playing the star, which is easy to do in this industry. We wouldn't be successful if we weren't down-to-earth. I've got family and having children has definitely put a perspective on things and kept us balanced."

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