WINTER STYLE IDEAS

The story behind designing & making a new clothing range

Even before Lockdown, we had been working on designing and making a whole new range of clothing right here in our Cirencester workrooms.

Myself and Sian, our Savile Row trained in house tailor, had not only designed and made our new range of mens clothing, we are not setting out on our new range of ladies clothing.

The first item that we have been working on, is our new ladies Cosy Coat. A coat that can be worn at anytime and with any outfit. It has a large collar and angled lapels, a bit of a mix between a shawl and notch lapel that allows the collar to be worn up or down. It is also oversized so can be wrapped around the wearer for extra warmth. It can be left undone to float around the wearer or done up using the attached belt or button option.

With all of the work that goes into making clothing and the focus on slow and ethical fashion at the moment, I thought that I would write a quick article to highlight quite what goes into designing and making a new item of clothing.

The whole process starts with a simple idea! I love clothing and I love looking at clothes, how people wear them, what fabric they are made of, what colours people are wearing, what they are wearing them with etc. etc. This then leads to thoughts on how I'd change certain things I'd seen and what I think people would like to wear. I then sketch out some ideas and designs. I then focus in on one design and then take it to Sian to see if it will work!
Sian and I then chat about the design, and as a trained tailor, and the person who will be making it, she lets me know what will work and what may not. We then play around with the design and she then sets about creating a pattern that will allow her to make the actual coat. This process can sometimes take ages, as we constantly tweak and improve the pattern and will often be tweaked and changed after we have made a few of the designs to make it easier for Sian to make, as well as improve the comfort and flow of the item.

Then we select a fabric that we believe will work for the prototype. The fabric that we use in the end for the clothing may be a very different make up to the one the prototype is made from, but it depends on how the item comes out and how the fabric compliments the design and like wise. Each item is designed to be able to be made from most fabrics as the fabric choice is down to the purchaser but we always offer complete honesty and openess is what fabrics will and won't work.

The fabric is then steam ironed to allow for any shrinkage that may occur.

 

The pattern is then marked out on the fabric and is ready to be cut.

After cutting it is time to construct the coat. This is where we look at how the seams work, what is the best way to sew them and tweak any areas that may become too bulky or not strong enough when wearing.

At each stage, Sian looks at all areas of the pattern we have created and we alter anything that needs tweaking before the final pattern is signed off.

When the coat has been sewn, it is pressed and checked before it is tried out, worn and popped onto a mannequin to have a proper look at it, check that we are happy with each aspect, change anything that we don't think is quite right, change the pattern accordingly. We then pop it on a mannequin, have a look at it again in different lights and then sign everything off to get it ready for people to order.

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