Triangl co-founder Erin Deering talks about running the brand and getting depressed

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The co-founder of global swimwear brand Triangl has revealed how all of the fame, fortune and success associated with running the multi million-dollar brand with her ex-fiancé led her into a spiral of depression.

On Instagram Erin Deering’s life running one of the hottest Australian fashion exports with the father of two of her children, Craig Ellis, was enviable: Holidays in the Maldives and Italy, a home base in Monaco, $300million deals on the table with venture capitalists and walls adorned with original Andy Warhol art.

But behind the glamorous pictures Erin, who was then in her early 30s, was feeling more alone than ever before and was ’embarrassed’ to tell her family and friends back home in Melbourne that things were not as them seemed.

Speaking on the Peaches podcast with hosts Tori Clapham and Bec Chidiac, Erin detailed the personal cost of her success, saying goodbye to her business partner and ex-fiancé and exiting from the label itself in 2018. 

On Instagram Erin Deering’s (pictured today aged 37) life running one of the hottest Australian fashion exports with the father of two of her children Craig Ellis was enviable

Originally from Melbourne the 37-year-old started Triangl alongside her ex-fiance and father of her two children, Craig Ellis, in 2012 (both pictured)

 Originally from Melbourne the 37-year-old started Triangl alongside her ex-fiance and father of her two children, Craig Ellis, in 2012 (both pictured)

The now 37-year-old started Triangl alongside Craig in 2012, developing the idea on their second date, which was at the beach.

Erin struggled to find a swimsuit for the all-important date that was reasonably priced, stylish and well made without spending a fortune.

 After spending three hours on the shoreline talking about the inconvenient lack of two pieces the pair decided to sell their belongings and move to Hong Kong to launch a swimwear company.

‘It was tough at the start,’ Craig told FEMAIL in 2016.

‘We had to sell all our stuff and borrow money from some friends to get by.’

Eating tinned food on the floor of their tiny flat and trying to sell one bikini a day, they eventually stumbled on a style that was selling: the black binded neoprene number. 

Neoprene naturally curves around a human shape with ease, which Craig suspected is why it was so revolutionary at the time (pictured is one of their winning designs)

 Neoprene naturally curves around a human shape with ease, which Craig suspected is why it was so revolutionary at the time (pictured is one of their winning designs)

The early days: It was at this point when sales increased dramatically and Triangl was selling 2,000 pairs of bikinis and making a $150,000USD/$197,000AUD a day profit

The early days: It was at this point when sales increased dramatically and Triangl was selling 2,000 pairs of bikinis and making a $150,000USD/$197,000AUD a day profit

‘We used social media to get the message out there because we couldn’t afford billboards, PR agents and advertising. Similarly we went with neoprene instead of nylon or prints, which we also experimented with, because it seemed to be selling,’ he said. 

Neoprene naturally curves around a human shape with ease, which Craig suspected is why it was so revolutionary at the time. 

It became so popular that model Kendall Jenner caught wind of the brand, asked for some samples, and before long was posting pictures of the designs on Twitter.  

‘The celeb endorsement really helped,’ Craig said.

‘But I think people can tell when that comes about organically and naturally, rather than us just pushing our product on people who we want to wear it.

The couple at the time where living in Monaco and appeared to constantly be on vacation

The couple at the time where living in Monaco and appeared to constantly be on vacation

'It doesn't mind what's going on in your physical outside world, if the inside is chaos nothing will matter,' she told the podcast hosts

‘It doesn’t mind what’s going on in your physical outside world, if the inside is chaos nothing will matter,’ she told the podcast hosts

‘Plus the price point, which is under $150AUD, is the sweet spot. It’s reasonable, but expensive enough to be good quality.’

It was at this point when sales increased dramatically and Triangl was selling 2,000 pairs of bikinis and making a $150,000USD/$197,000AUD a day profit.

But with great financial security came great discomfort for Erin.

‘It doesn’t mind what’s going on in your physical outside world, if the inside is chaos nothing will matter,’ she told the podcast hosts.

‘I still feel quite detached from that period of time because I lost so much of me.’

Erin’s relationship with Craig fell apart and they parted ways. This coincided with her leaving the business.

Erin was able to treat herself to designer clothes (pictured in a Saint Laurent store)

Triangl's neoprene bikinis were very popular

On March 15 Erin celebrated Triangl’s 10 year anniversary with an Instagram post

Eventually she went and saw a therapist, met her current partner Zachary Keane (pictured) - who has she two other children with - and began looking forward to a brighter future

Eventually she went and saw a therapist, met her current partner Zachary Keane (pictured) – who has she two other children with – and began looking forward to a brighter future

Eventually she went and saw a therapist, met her current partner Zachary Keane – who has she two other children with – and began looking forward to a brighter future. 

On March 15, Erin celebrated Triangl’s 10 year anniversary with an Instagram post. 

‘A whole decade ago, Craig and I officially started Triangl. If you have listened to any of my podcasts, you’d know how much I struggled with my identity, self worth, and overarching mental health during those years,’ she wrote.

‘I have shared my most vulnerable moments during those times (and continue to do so), in the hope of helping others feel better about their struggles, internal battles, and life in general.’  



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