Quirky prints & rich textured wools…an exploration into the fabric selection process…

Having the luxury to paint illustrations of my work is rare indeed, however working from home recently has allowed me some extra time to do this. I chose our lush green with blues and oranges story which is probably the most eclectic group in the AW20 collection. It is fun, frivolous and very youthful, allowing you to put some crazy combinations together that somehow just work perfectly.


When I select fabrics, there is always a starting point where the European supplier has shown me some fantastic combinations of textures and patterns. I’ll either work with these directly, or I will take the time to design and develop something unique for us. This is my favourite part of what I do, the freedom to actually design fabric then becomes quite instinctive and intuitive for me. I always say to the suppliers I work with, that if I had of been born in Italy I probably would’ve loved to become a textile designer.


The macro check wool is a particular favourite fabric this season…very directional in that plaid is resurging as a fashion staple. Pictured here as a little skirt worn with a merino striped turtleneck. The check also comes in a fab coat.


I work with print in a similar way. Sometimes we have talented designers contribute work to us and other times we develop the prints ourselves using the rich and wondrous archives that many print suppliers allow us to select from. The process is a most exciting and satisfying one and in the new age where digital printing is very easy to do, it means we can trial many things in order to reach the perfect design in the perfect colours.


In the sketch, I have used the quirky giraffe design we printed onto pure silk crepe and then made into a cute ruffled trimmed belted shirt dress. The colours in the print are quite subtle and I love the fact that you have to look closer to even realise it is a giraffe in the design! The other design is an example of a more geometrical 1970’s retro inspired design…very much a look you will always find in our collections, simply because of the stylish nature of these types of designs and I love how well the colours work with the herringbone tweed of the coat.