Monday, 28 February 2011

Setting up for London Fashion Week...

All photos taken behind the scenes by Callum Toy

Sunday, 27 February 2011

Friday, 25 February 2011

Marwood: LFW Menswear Day

Two days ago Marwood was asked by Fashion East to present our debut tie collection as part of Menswear Day for London Fashion Week. It was a successful day with some great feedback and new orders - so well worth the time and preparation taken to set it all up. Thanks to Sam and Russell from Lie-Ins and Tigers, Julia, Sarah Carr and Greg Cox for all your help and support. Greg Cox allowed us to display the ties on one of his beautiful pieces of furniture - a 1920s wooden cabinet that he then sectioned in to three and finished each surface with white Formica which was the perfect accompaniment for the collection... See more of his work on his website.

Phone photos taken on the day - so excuse the poor quality.


Sunday, 20 February 2011

Michael Johansson

Make a home for everything.
Satisfying storage, to say the least.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Made in England

Following factory life in Salford, this documentary shows an interesting glimpse of their process and the retail demands they face.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

London Fashion Week - One week to go

We checked out the Marwood space in Somerset House this afternoon to check the dimensions for fitting our installation for Fashion East's Menswear Day next Wednesday. The place is buzzing with activity. Looking forward to seeing it all in motion next week...

Seeing diamonds

Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Venetia Scott

Paris in February

A couple of days in Paris provides some inspiration...

Monday, 14 February 2011

Simon Spurr AW11

Well done to Simon Spurr who's collection, presented this weekend in New York proved to be as lovely as ever. Seriously expensive looking with a harder edge for AW11 - it looked wearable and modern. This collection wasn't about ties, but when neckwear did feature, it looked just right and was normally constructed from a luxurious matching suiting cloth - a nice signature for Spurr.

Wednesday, 9 February 2011

John Stezaker

Whitechapel Gallery:
British artist John Stezaker is fascinated by the lure of images. Taking classic movie stills, vintage postcards and book illustrations, Stezaker makes collages to give old images a new meaning. By adjusting, inverting and slicing separate pictures together to create unique new works of art, Stezaker explores the subversive force of found images. Stezaker’s famous Mask series fuses the profiles of
glamorous sitters with caves, hamlets, or waterfalls, making for images of eerie beauty.

Saturday, 5 February 2011

Lace: A dying craft?

A snippet and an extension of a recent article about Marwood that was published on Style Bubble blog about what is special about English lace...

How did you first hap upon English lace makers and what is it particularly about English lace that makes it so special?

A friend had visited an English lace manufacturer and thought it would be of interest to me. Since starting the Marwood blog I have loved the behind the scenes process and found it integral to designing the product... knowing how things are done and why; the amount you learn from the manufacturers is invaluable. Also, I had just picked up a vintage English lace collar piece as inspiration and so the timing was perfect.

I visited the family-run lace manufacturer and found that they've been making specialist spun lace using Leavers machines since 1845, creating their own unique patterns along the way. John Leavers developed a machine in 1813 that produced patterns and backgrounds at the same time. The Leavers machine introduced the production of intricate lace patterns similar to those created by hand - these patterns are created by trained draughtsmen. Leavers lace can be cut and it won't fray due to its construction of loops and twisted cotton. The recognisable feature of this factory's lace is small cotton nodules that are raised off the surface.

Is it a dying craft?
Definitely. When I went to the factory I was shown around every part of the process by Kate who works there. The fascinating machinery and process is so specific and requires constant man power and attention to draught the patterns, set up the machines, fix them, understand them and maintain the standards. I was shown some drafts that date back to the beginning of the 20th century that are still relied upon today and I think there is only one man left who can draft up new patterns. They also have problems with their supply chain - no dyeworks in the UK so they have to use one in Calais and it is becoming increasingly difficult to obtain cotton with the right count and twist. This all follows a world trend as lingerie etc now mainly use the cheaper mass market raschel lace that can produced in its millions of metres in the Far East.

The current Leaver Lace manufacturing process works to produce a quality product, so why update it? This theory wouldn't be a problem if there was an abundance of trained workers waiting to fill positions of those who are retiring.

Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Leonard Rosoman

The Meeting, Royal Academy of Arts. 1979-84 by Leonard Rosoman. Exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery.

It's always nice to have your attention brought to something that a friend thinks you will like... especially when they get it right. Leonard's work above and in the post below is a wonderful find - particularly these vivid colours. Thanks Sam.

Rosoman studied at the Royal Academy and the Central School of Art. He was appointed official war artist to the Admiralty between 1943 and 1945, and became a Royal Academician in 1970.