Designer’s Roadmap

A 12-week coaching program for apparel designers

Do you ever feel like you’re working all alone? Have you ever imagined that you’d love to have someone to work with? To have a sounding board for ideas? Someone to remind you of your goals?

Maybe someone just to listen to how things are going? That you can talk to without being afraid of being judged for not being successful enough?

It seems like so many designers out there are finding success in launching their clothing collections. They’ve been selling online, at markets and pop-ups, or even in their own retail stores. Now many fashion brands are finding success by focusing online in this pandemic.

But it can be a challenge to do it all alone. Even if you hire staff, it can be hard to juggle it all.

As a solopreneur, I have often wished for another person in my business to help with the strategy. Planning. Motivation. Someone to keep you going on the days you just want to curl up in bed.

When I started almost 20 years ago, that didn’t exist in my community. And business, especially online, was a lot different then.

In this age of social media and online selling, there’s so much more to do!
And some old ways of selling don’t seem to be working like they used to.

That’s why I’ve created a coaching program for apparel designers.

The Designers Roadmap is a 12-week coaching program for apparel designers. In the program, designers commit to spending three months focused on sales and business goals. It’s a one-on-one coach, mentor and retail consultant all rolled up into one.

Is this you?

  • Apparel or accessories designer
  • Value ethics, sustainability or conscious consumption
  • Desire to make a positive contribution to the world through your business
  • Have a big dream you want to achieve

Willing to commit to:

  • Meeting weekly online for 12 weeks
  • Working on your business goals and sales
  • Weekly homework
  • Providing feedback and testimonial on the program

If you think you’d be a good fit for the Designer’s Roadmap coaching program, please click below to fill out the application form.

Apply now


Keep reading to see what the program is all about…

What’s the Designer’s Roadmap?

The Designer’s Roadmap program has two main components:

  1. Coaching focused on the issues facing you in your business
  2. Training on key business concepts that support your selling goals

This program focuses on supporting you in achieving your business and sales goals. There isn’t one style of running a business that’s right for everyone. You’ll have the most success when you pursue a way of working that suits you best.

The Designer’s Roadmap is about having someone join you on your journey as you work towards your destination. A journey where you can go farther, get to your destination faster or with fewer twists and turns than you would alone. With fewer false starts.

It’s not about having someone tell you how to run a business as someone else does. It’s about having someone on the journey with you. Someone who can help you find your unique path, to point out signposts along the way to keep you moving forward.

What the Designer’s Roadmap is not

It’s not consulting.  Consulting lays out a planned path for you to follow, which may or may not suit your style. The Designer’s Roadmap is not a step-by-step action plan.

It’s not a training program. Training teaches you new skills that you implement on your own. A small component of our weekly sessions will include training on skills that help you reach your goals. But that’s not the main focus of our time together.

It’s not production support. Some of your goals in our time together may focus on your design and production. But this program is designed to help you develop your sales goals.

The main thing

The Designer’s Roadmap focuses on coaching. That means I ask questions and listen. I help you find and follow your path.

You already have a vision of where you want to go. And what you want to build. You even know some of the steps you need to take to get there.

Sometimes the path gets a bit foggy though…

Or you get distracted. Or tired.

The Designer’s Roadmap helps to clear the fog. With a roadmap, you can see that there are multiple paths to take. But you choose the road to follow, and I help you navigate the way.

The Designer’s Roadmap program is a bit like working with a sports coach or industry mentor. My job is to help you get clear on your own path and where you want to go.

Also, I can add:

  • an outside perspective
  • knowledge about fashion retail best practices
  • insight on common pitfalls
  • industry tips and resources  

In the Designer’s Roadmap, we’ll focus on four key areas:


  • What do you want to achieve?
  • What goals do you want to set for the next 12 weeks?
  • How will you maintain focus?


  • How are you doing in your progress towards your goals?
  • Are you taking daily action on what you said you would do?


  • What ideas could help you grow in your business?
  • How could you think bigger?


  • I am here to support you in your successes and challenges, and to be a sounding board for your ideas.

Overview of modules

To give structure to our discussions, part of our weekly sessions will focus on evaluating your progress in the following areas:

Module I: Positioning

  1. Target Customer/Customer Needs
  2. Branding, Message, Story
  3. Products – items, description, imagery

Module II: Profit

  1. Pricing
  2. Sales
  3. Financial Projections

Module III: Planning

  1. Customer Value & Loyalty
  2. Merchandise Planning & Presentation
  3. Promotional Calendar

Module IV: Promotion

  1. Website, Advertising, Analytics
  2. Social Media/Newsletter
  3. Events (including pop-ups, markets)

Think this might be for you? Click below to fill out the application.

Apply now

How much does it cost?

This 12-week one-on-one coaching program is $996 CDN.
The fee is payable in three monthly installments of $332/mo.

What you’ll get:

  • 12 weeks of one-on-one coaching
  • 90 days of coach-on-call: when needed, reach out for help between weekly calls
  • weekly resources & assignments
  • experienced insight and support

Money-Back Guarantee: If you’re wondering about whether this is a good investment, think about our 100% guarantee for this program. If you find that working with me hasn’t met your expectations, reach out to me after you’ve completed all the sessions and homework from the first 45 days of the program. It’s essential to have a positive coaching relationship. If you’ve done the work and are not happy, I’ll refund what you’ve paid. In my coaching and teaching, when students apply what they’re learning every week, they get back the most value.

Are you ready?

Ready to invest in your growth as an entrepreneur and the development of your brand over the next 90 days?

Apply now

About your coach

Melanie McIntosh is the owner and founder of Inspire Retail Solutions. She has over 30 years of experience connected with fashion, marketing and retail. She has been teaching post-secondary fashion business courses at John Casablancas Institute for more than 14 years.

Melanie is passionate about helping students and entrepreneurs grow and succeed, especially in the rapidly changing fashion industry. She especially loves to work with individuals who strive to create ethical and sustainable fashion brands.


Email me.

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