State of Escape


Brigitte MacGowan & Desley Maidment (Co-Founders State of Escape)



BM & DM: Sydney, Australia

How did you start:

BM & DM: One of those chance conversations when we were just hanging out with our kids that sparked a revolution in our minds! We thought our original idea was great, but soon realized it wasn’t going to work. We loved the research process so much we quickly moved onto our next idea and it wasn’t for another 12 months that we came up with the idea for State of Escape. Our prerequisite: opportunity to travel!


Go to pieces in your wardrobe:

BM: Denim, t-shirts, sneakers, long necklaces and multiple variations on the same theme.

DM: Jeans, sweaters, Birkenstocks and of course lots of great T’s


Go to pieces in your mini persons wardrobe:

BM: There’s at least 3 outfit changes each a day each between the 2 of my girls. Simple slip on dresses and sandals are the mainstays of their wardrobes. Oh and dress ups.

DM: Dresses in all shapes, lengths and colours. I have 2 girls… the youngest is very girly and the other has a mixed up eclectic array of whatever mood takes her on the day. Not to mention a serious amount of dress up clothes in both wardrobes.

Something we don’t know about you:

BM: I own a horse and still ride 2-3 times a week.

DM: I spent the majority of my childhood living overseas in various European and Asian countries.

Must have products in your handbag:

BM: Visine eye drops! Mecca Lip De-Luscious SPF 25 lip-gloss and Clarins handcream.

DM: iPhone, Sunglasses, Water Bottle & Kiehls Lip Balm


Must have products for your small person:

BM: Sunscreen, spray in hair conditioner and a Tangle Teezer.

DM: A crazy amount of various water bottles, Trampoline, Micro Scooters, multiple hair ties, clips and tiaras

Secret spot:

BM: on my balcony with a tall glass of Campari and Soda!

DM: a walk along the beach… and when it’s warm enough a swim in the ocean is an instant hit!


Tantrum tamer:

BM: The only thing that has ever worked for me is space and time followed by a big cuddle.

DM: Agreed, some time to vent the issue and then encouraging them to tell me what they “really” want.

How did you go from idea to product?

BM/DM: We had a very strong design philosophy and knew what we wanted the look and feel of the Escape carryall to be. As it was a totally unique design and we had no reference point to draw from, it took time, patience and experimentation to work through all the design components. Our original bag was stuck together with glue!

It was also critical to know who our market was, what their expectations were and develop a strategy to help us get there.


Advice for others at the idea point?

BM/DM: Speak, listen and draw on the experience of friends and colleauges in the industry – they are a wealth of information. Stay focused, never give up, don’t get distracted and research!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *