John Smedley Joins Forces with Six British Designers
Supported by both the British Fashion Council and the UKFT, the collaboration includes men’s and womenswear designers who each represent one or more of its core brand values: Holly Fulton for her vibrant use of colour, Claire Barrow for her unique artistry, Phoebe English for her dedication to British craftsmanship, Ashley Williams (design pictured right) for colour and texture, 1205 for their dedication to perfecting garment construction, and Lou Dalton for her use of unique textures and menswear expertise.
Each designer brings their own signature aesthetic to the collection and all the knitwear pieces are manufactured by John Smedley in Britain. A close relationship between the designers and the garment tech team at John Smedley ensured that each piece was well executed in design and construction. The process was a challenge with new techniques and hurdles to overcome but the label and the designers are extremely pleased with the quality and contemporary look of the collection.
“Throughout our long 230 year history, John Smedley has consistently innovated in every era to remain contemporary as a knitwear brand. We are immensely proud of our British heritage and this project has had many strands to it, but in essence it marries together the best of British talent from across creative design, technical, craft and production. It has been a catalyst for designers to bring their production back to the UK and experience quality craftsmanship techniques that have stood the test of time, and for us to really showcase what our teams can achieve. Commitment to championing British talent, innovation in design and dedication to quality production are fantastic pillars for us to continue our history of innovation with, and a great way for new designers to start theirs.” Said Jess McGuire-Dudley, Head of Marketing & Design, John Smedley.
“This project provides a great opportunity for younger designers to use John Smedley’s extensive knowledge of manufacturing and craftsmanship. This support from the John Smedley team allows a new generation of British brands to produce high quality knitwear here in Britain,” added Caroline Rush CBE, CEO, British Fashion Council.