Joules (clothing)

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Founded1989; 31 years ago (1989)
FounderTom Joule
United Kingdom
BrandsJoules, Little Joule, Baby Joule
Number of employees

Joules is a British clothing company which sells clothing and homeware products inspired by British country lifestyles.[1][2][3][4] Its founder Tom Joule described its business model in 2011 as creating clothing with "colour and fun and entertainment".[5]

Established to sell clothing at country shows, the company established its own clothing line in 1999 and began to open shops in the 2000s.[6][7] As of 2018, the company had 123 stores and a turnover of £185.9m.[8]


A Joules shop in Kingston upon Thames

Originally established as Joule & Sons in 1977 by Ian Joule, his son Tom took over the business in 1989. Joule & Son originally sold branded clothing and accessories at equestrian and country shows. Seeing a gap in the market for colourful country clothing as an alternative to traditional styles, Tom got 100 pairs of pink wellington boots manufactured. These sold out almost immediately.[5]

In 1994 Joule and Son rebranded as Joules. Tom was selecting and selling branded goods at minor fairs and by 1997 had done even better selling known outdoor clothing brands at the bigger shows.[6] It was around this time that Tom Joule was inspired to create his own clothing collection and in March 1999 he sold the first shirt under the Joules brand on his own stall.[5][9] In September 2000, Tom opened the first Joules store next door to the café owned by his father in Market Harborough, Leicestershire.[5] The company remains based in Market Harborough.

With the Foot-and-Mouth outbreak in 2001 almost all the shows that Tom Joule intended selling at were cancelled. He decided to take Joules clothing directly to retailers helping the brand to become more widely available.[9] The mail order catalogue business was launched in 2002,[6] with the website following in 2003. Joules launched Little Joule in 2008, designed for 2-12 year olds. Following the popularity of Little Joule, Baby Joule was established in 2009.[10] The sitting hare seen branded on most Joules clothing was first used as a logo in 2009 and later expanded to include most ranges.

Over seven years from 2003 the company saw turnover increase from £3m to £50m with mail order and internet sales accounting for a fifth of turnover by 2010.[11] By early 2011 Joules saw its high street network rise to a total of 52 stores.[12] To date the company has a network of over 99 retail stores and in 2014/15 had a turnover of more than £117m.[1] During May 2016, Joules completed a successful stock exchange listing on the Alternative Investment Market.[13]


Multicoloured wellington boots made by Joules

The Joules collection includes contemporary men's, women's and children's clothing, footwear and accessories. It began with wellies, country-inspired clothing and polo shirts and although these products still form a key part of the range, much of the collection is now fashion-focused. The Little Joule brand is aimed at the children's clothing market and was launched in 2008, followed by Baby Joule in 2009.[14] In 2019, Joules announced a partnership with Peter Rabbit for its kids range.[15]

Joules started selling home and garden products in 2013 and in 2014 launched an optical line in partnership with Vision Express.[16] In 2015 Joules launched a range of home fragrances and toiletries.


There are currently over 123 Joules stores in the UK (2018),[17] with flagship stores in Cheltenham, Norwich and York.[18] Additional stores are in market towns and coastal holiday destinations such as St. Ives, Southwold, Burnham Market and Salcombe.

Recent years have seen Joules open travel stores in Gatwick Airport, Waterloo and St. Pancras train stations in London.[19][20]


Joules clothing and products can also be found in various stockists in the UK and internationally. This includes.


  1. ^ a b "Clothing brand Joules celebrates 25th anniversary with profit increase". 2015-08-29. Retrieved 15 October 2017.
  2. ^ "Silver jubilee joy for Joules". This is Money. 2015-03-16. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  3. ^ Hounslea, Tara (2015-03-18). "Joules expansion on track as it opens 99th store". Drapers. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  4. ^ Pegden, Tom (2015-06-11). "Joules secures £11 million in credit to fund European growth". Leicester Mercury. Archived from the original on 2015-06-14. Retrieved 2015-07-13.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
  5. ^ a b c d Tyzack, Anna (2011-01-04). "Joules lifestyle brand: funking up the shires". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 2012-05-12. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  6. ^ a b c "One to Watch: Joules". Marketing Magazine. 2005-11-16. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  7. ^ Berwin, Lisa (2010-07-23). "Joules eyes major city centres as profits soar". Retail Week. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  8. ^ Group, Joules. [file:///Users/jonnydavies/Downloads/annual-report-2017-2018.pdf "Annual report 17/18"] Check |url= value (help) (PDF). Joules Group. Joules Group. Retrieved 2019-07-19.
  9. ^ a b "Horse sense helped clothing venture". The Telegraph. 2005-10-29. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  10. ^ Hazell, Kyrsty. "Introducing the brand new Baby Joule collection". Made for Mums. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  11. ^ "Tom Joule looks to be hands-on once again". Leicester Mercury. 2010-11-30. Retrieved 2015-07-13.[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ Hurley, James (2011-01-11). "Retail: Joules's plan for 2011". The Telegraph. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  13. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-08-16. Retrieved 2016-05-28.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  14. ^ "Joules launches eyewear collection with Vision Express". The Retail Bulletin. 2014-05-02. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  15. ^ Global, License (2019-06-20). "PETER RABBIT, JOULES PARTNER FOR KIDS APPAREL". License global. Retrieved 2019-07-19.
  16. ^ Davies, Taryn (2014-05-02). "Joules launches first Eyewear range". Female First. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  17. ^ Group, Joules. [file:///Users/jonnydavies/Downloads/annual-report-2017-2018.pdf "Annual Report 17/18"] Check |url= value (help) (PDF). Joules Group. Joules Group. Retrieved 2019-07-19.
  18. ^ Thompson, James (2011-04-25). "Joules bucks high-street trend with profits leap". Independent. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  19. ^ Barras-Hill, Luke (2013-12-13). "Joules enters airport retailing at Gatwick". Frontier Magazine. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  20. ^ Goldfingle, Gemma (2012-07-17). "New Waterloo retail space opens ahead of Olympics". Retail Week. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  21. ^ Tugby, Luke (2015-03-15). "Joules international sales almost double after US growth". Retail Week. Retrieved 2015-07-13.
  22. ^ Felstead, Andrea (2015-06-26). "Reborn in the USA". Financial Times. Retrieved 2015-07-13.

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