Mentoring & Advice

Mentoring service for Bag Design Entrepreneurs

Mentor for start ups

Design IQ’s main business is to Design and Develop your product for you.

But not everybody wants our full Design and Development service – some people just want advice and practical help along the journey to create their new product and business.

So, because we love helping people create new products and business’s – we now offer a Mentoring service for customers who want to “do it all themselves”, supported by an industry professional.

Mentoring for Start Ups who want to launch a new textile product

Would you like impartial advice and help to bring your idea to life?

  • Do you have an idea for a bag that you’d like to develop?
  • Have you spotted a market opportunity for a type of bag that you’d like help to create?
  • Are you aiming for a DIY launch of your own product idea?

We know how difficult is to get practical advice, so our MD is offering Mentoring and Consultancy support for people who would like to turn their idea into a real life product, with the backup of advice from a textile industry professional.

You might like advice on how to find a manufacturer, or an objective opinion on whether your idea and design is a good idea – or you might want advice on how much it will cost to get your idea to market.

We have done all of these things ourselves, and can offer you advice and a helping hand to turn your market research – or even just a rough sketch, into a winning commercial product.

Here are some of the sorts of problems you might need advice or a helping hand to solve….

Guy Mathiot - Design-IQ Ltd

Design IQ Founder Guy Mathiot

  • How can I get my prototype made?
  • How do I find a factory?
  • Is it possible to manufacture in the UK / Europe or do I have to manufacture in Asia?
  • What are minimum orders?

Bag manufacturing in factory

Market & Costs Research
  • Is my idea strong? Is anybody already making something similar?
  • How much will it cost to start my brand? Show us your estimates and we will give you feedback.

COsts and tasks to set up a new bag brand

  • Is my design idea good – or does it need improvement?
  • Has anybody already made a design like my idea – can you help me check?
  • I want to have special trims – where do I get these from?

Example of computer aided bag design

Protecting my design
  • I have heard of Patents and Copyright but I hear people still copy – so what will help me protect my design in a commercial environment?
  • Is copying by Asian manufacturers a real problem, or is the danger closer to home?
Online Selling
  • What are the practicalities of selling direct to the public online?
  • What are the best online platforms to use as a web shop?
  • How much does it cost to sell online, and what are the hidden costs?
  • How do I deal with returns?
  • How do I find the right fabric for my product?
  • How do I find ethical materials?

Fabric samples for bag design projects

  • What colours will be fashionable next year
  • Should I go for ‘safe’ colours, or instead go for more adventurous colours to make a statement?
  • How much will it cost to make my product?
  • How do I calculate how much I must charge for my product?
  • How much profit should I expect to make?

Profit calculator for bag design project

What would help you?

These are only some of the things you might like help with – you can ask your own questions, we are here to help.

More details about the Mentoring and Consultancy service

This Mentoring service is targeted at early stage businesses who cannot afford to hire a professional to design and develop their products for them, but still need good advice.

So we do not require that you use Design IQ to design or manufacturer your product – we are simply here to help you bring your product to life in the most economical possible way and we simply charge you for our time.

Please note: All fees are quoted inclusive of VAT at 20% for UK and EU customers.

How does your Mentoring service work?

Our Mentoring will be done by phone or video call in the first instance.
It will start with a ‘fact find’ so we can learn about what you want to do and your ambitions for your business idea during a free 20-minute consultation.

How do I start?*

Firstly we offer a 20-min introduction chat for free. During this conversation, tell us what you want to achieve and we will tell you how we can help you and see if this Mentoring service is right for you.

or just call +44 (0)1531 640118

Send a WhatsApp Message

OK, so after my free 20-min chat I decide I want to go ahead with the Mentoring and Consultation service…
How much does it cost, and how can I pay?

You pay the Mentoring fees in advance by bank transfer – or by credit card with an extra 5% fee. All prices shown below are inclusive of vat for UK and EU customers.

First Mentoring Session

Start with a fixed fee session for up to 1.5 hours for £300*.

This is a fixed fee session so If your call is shorter than 1.5 hours the fee remains the same.

We will then listen to what you’d like to know, and either answer your questions straight away – or if necessary we may do some research and come back to you with suggestions and answers within the 1.5 hour total budget.

Any ideas we come up with during this first session are yours to use as you like.

After this session you can choose two different ways to have ‘on-going Mentoring’ if you like.

£300* First Session

Apply for your first mentoring session

A. Monthly Mentoring Package

After the First Mentoring Session we offer on-going Mentoring for £500* per month. This will cover up to 4 hours time spent on chatting with you or doing research solving problems for you. Your minimum commitment is one month, but if you buy three months or more we offer a 5% discount when it is paid all in one go.

£500* per month

B. Ad Hoc Mentoring & Consultancy Package

If you prefer a more ‘ad hoc’ / flexible support relationship after the First Mentoring Session you can call upon help and advice for a fixed fee of £250* per enquiry which will cover up to 2 hours of our time. If your enquiry needs more time – see below.

£250* per enquiry

Extra Add Hoc Mentoring or Consultancy

If you ask us to do some specific research for you that cannot be covered within the 2 hours package above, extra time will be chargeable at £125* per hour. All fees will be quoted for your approval, and payable in advance.

£125* per hour

Please note: All fees are quoted inclusive of VAT at 20% for UK and EU customers.


We will keep all our conversations confidential.


If you’d also like to have a Non-Disclosure Agreement signed we can do this with a 2 way NDA that we will supply to you – the cost is £120*.

What we do and don’t do, in the Mentoring and Consultancy service

This service is to help you do things yourself with confidence, so for instance we don’t do your design for you and don’t organise your sample production – this is an advice service only to help you do things yourself with greater confidence.


If you later on decide to hire Design IQ to do some work for you, we will give you a 5% discount on any services you order if you are a ‘Mentoring’ customer.

Why are we offering this Mentoring service?

Over the recent few years there has been a growth in the number of people trying to build new products and bring them to market.
These entrepreneurs say they love our advice – but many do not have the funds to spend on hiring Design IQ to do the work for them.
So we thought we would offer a economical ‘support and advice service’ to help early stage business because it is our passion to help new start ups.

If you’d like to go ahead, click the button below and give us two dates and times for your free 20-minute chat.

Profile of Mentor

My name is Guy Mathiot, I am the MD of Design IQ – a company that designs and develops commercial products for clients who want to make bags or clothing for the lifestyle, outdoor, and fashion markets. I am a professional fashion / textile designer / marketer with 40 years experience of working with majors brands in the UK, Europe, Asia and USA creating new products for the fashion, lifestyle and outdoor markets. My market experience ranges from Fashion clothing, Couture level fashion to Technical sportswear and Outdoor performance apparel and Bags and Luggage – and in recent years I have focussed mostly upon textile products ( mostly bags and luggage) for travel, parenting to camping equipment, pet products and even textile medical equipment. With a wide knowledge and contacts in the textile industry – I have the capability to find whatever materials and resources I need to support my clients. I have day to day experience of organising manufacturing for brands and retailers – so I have learnt the practicalities of market testing a product idea, consumer testing a product, refining and commercialising products and bringing them to market. Having been described “as one of the most commercial designers he has met“ by a long term industry head-hunter. I bring a realistic mindset and enthusiastic vision to whatever I create.
Guy Mathiot - Bag Design mentor

I have hands on practical experience – I can cut a pattern for a product, sew a straight line, source fabrics and trims, design logos and promotional graphics, organise production, build websites, and communicate concepts and products to senior buyers and decision makers.

With 40 years experience of the fashion – sport and outdoor market I have a strong marketing led mindset, clarity of mind, with a love of helping people create new products and businesses.