Designing the dresswear collection often starts from the fabrics up.
Sourcing the right materials is a real challenge for us -sustainable, locally produced woollen fabric is suprisingly hard to come by!
Another important consideration is lining fabrics. We prefer to use organic cotton, which, on a small scale, is still limited in choice. The lining fabric will greatly effect how a finished garment will behave -how it will feel, how it will move and hang when worn- and all of our woollen dresswear is fully lined!
We dont use zips or other metal fastenings, so all shaping is dependant on finding clever ways of cutting or using buttons and ties, incorporating them in to the design.
We began the current collection with a selection of photographs, writings and public broadcasts from the 1930's. We found some beautiful fabrics and then began drawing, draping and pattern cutting.
First we make a toil, try it on and make some adjustments. Then we make a prototype and when we're happy, produce a few in each size.
Each garment is cut out individually, and we tend to make up between 2 and 5 garments at a time. We use an ovelocker where required, and a mixture of machine and hand stitching to get the right finish.