Best friends turn their love of vintage fashion into a million-dollar business: Nine Lives Bazaar


Best friends turn their love of vintage fashion into a million-dollar business with newborn babies in tow – and celebrities like Nina Dobrev are fans

  • Vanessa Cave and Rose Madden are the proud owners of Nine Lives Bazaar
  • It’s known for its eclectic prints and sustainable fabric choices
  • The mothers started an Etsy store first before deciding to launch the brand
  • Now the million-dollar business is preparing to launch swimwear and bridal 

Best friends turned entrepreneurs have described how a love of vintage fashion has transformed into a million-dollar business with their wears being worn by the likes of Alessandra Ambrosio and Nina Dobrev.

Vanessa Cave, 34, and Rose Madden, 32, are the proud owners of northern NSW-born store Nine Lives Bazaar, known for its eclectic prints and sustainable fabric choices.

After hoarding vintage for years and years without any real purpose Vanessa and Rose decided to create an Etsy store and sell some of their favourite pieces at local village markets in Burleigh and Byron Bay.

Vanessa Cave, 34, and Rose Madden, 32, are the proud owners of northern NSW-born store Nine Lives Bazaar (both pictured wearing the label)

Nina Dobrev

Alessandra Ambrosio

A number of famous faces including Nina Dobrev (left) and Alessandra Ambrosio (right) have worn the brand

‘Our friend who had an established brand at the time mentioned we should start our own brand and that he would give us his contacts if in exchange we would style his office,’ Vanessa told FEMAIL.

‘What started as designs made from sourced fabrics from the markets in Bali, evolved into us working closely with textile designers to create our own custom printed garments, firstly producing them in Bali and now in China.’

The name Nine Lives Bazaar is inspired by the colourful lives of generations that came before us, the mum-of-two said.

The moniker comes from the notion that the collections are timepieces and talismans that will fall into nine (or more) hands. 

The name Nine Lives Bazaar is inspired by the colourful lives of generations that came before us, the mum-of-two said

The name Nine Lives Bazaar is inspired by the colourful lives of generations that came before us, the mum-of-two said

The moniker comes from the notion that the collections are timepieces and talismans that will fall into nine (or more) hands

The moniker comes from the notion that the collections are timepieces and talismans that will fall into nine (or more) hands

‘We love to dream about who this possession will be passed down to? How many date nights and weddings will it dazzle? What festival grounds will it strut upon?’ She said.

The pair released their first custom printed range in 2016 and in 2020, during the Covid pandemic, became a fully-fledged company. 

‘We’ve very much always designed statement garments that we want to own ourselves with our mantra in mind “more is more, less is a bore,”‘ Vanessa said.  

‘We’re inspired a lot by vintage pieces – but this time around they are designed to fit and feel a whole lot better on the body. 

‘When we started the brand we were in our early 20s so the skirts were a lot shorter, the tops more cropped, jumpsuits were our go to and a whole lot of bell sleeves were the heroes of our collections.

‘These days you will find a lot more flowy dresses, palazzo pants and button down shirts to accommodate our busy mum lives.’

The pair released their first custom printed range in 2016 and in 2020, during the Covid pandemic, became a fully-fledged company

The pair released their first custom printed range in 2016 and in 2020, during the Covid pandemic, became a fully-fledged company

Incredibly as the brand has grown, so has their ability to cater to an inclusive size range of six to 20 and represent those who have not been catered for by other similar brands.

‘Since our humble beginnings we’ve grown a seriously engaged community of fellow lovers of locomotion, fiercely bold clothing and unapologetic expression – who just absolutely love what we do,’ Vanessa said.

‘Each collection launch receives an even more amazing response and sentiment than the last and they’re always as excited as we are about what’s to come next.’

Their best-selling collection was Land of the Sun in 2020. 

Their best-selling collection was Land of the Sun in 2020

Their best-selling collection was Land of the Sun in 2020

‘It was just Rose and I then with newborn babies in tow working from home and we basically fell off our chairs when an entire colourway sold out within five minutes,’ she said.

‘We put it on pre order again that afternoon and again that sold out in five minutes.’

With a growth rate approaching 200 per cent in the past two years Nine Lives Bazaar is gearing up for a busy next quarter with the release of its swimwear made from recycled fishing nets, bridal as well as unique accessories. 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk