Solihull News - - PROPERTY TALK -

There are few women in the UK who have not ad­mired the pretty coats, dresses and jumpers dis­played at their near­est Karen Millen shop. Founded in 1981 by Karen and her for­mer part­ner Kevin Stan­ford with a loan of just £ 100, they be­gan by mak­ing tai­lored shirts for friends – be­fore open­ing their first shop in 1983 in Maid­stone, Kent.

Sub­se­quent shops opened in nearby Tun­bridge Wells and Brighton but the com­pany now has nearly 200 stores and con­ces­sions all over the world. But al­though the busi­ness bears her name, Karen has noth­ing to do with it now af­ter the com­pany was sold to an Ice­landic re­tailer. It’s now owned by an in­ter­na­tional bank af­ter the orig­i­nal buyer went bust fol­low­ing the fi­nan­cial cri­sis. Karen has faced her own fi­nan­cial prob­lems. In March this year she was de­clared bankrupt in the High Court and faces los­ing her £ 3 mil­lion man­sion in the Ken­tish coun­try­wide.

But there were hap­pier times. Be­tween 1988 un­til 2000 Karen lived in this six- bed­room man­sion in Wa­ter­ing­bury, Kent, which is now for sale.

The prop­erty’s mas­ter bed­room dou­bled as her cut­ting room while she de­vel­oped her busi­ness.

More in­for­ma­tion is avail­able from sothe­bys realty. com/ eng

Karen Millen

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