Dashing Tweeds was founded by photographer Guy Hills and woven textile designer Kirsty McDougal to bring texture, colour and innovation back into menswear.
Guy was longing for an urban tweed with all the sportswear qualities of wool, but one which blended into the townscape to wear whilst biking between meetings in London. He was shooting advertising for the tailors of Savile Row and had unique access to archives from most of the houses on the row. It did not take long to realise that in terms of cloth selections, colours and qualities we were living in poor times. In addition the cuts of modern suits only used a small selection of the numerous patterns which had historically been cut by these eminent craftsmen.
When Guy met Kirsty his sartorial dreams came true and they set out to challenge the menswear market with a new woven textile based brand. After the initial success of their first Urban Tweed the pair started a weave design studio in East London. One of the key elements of Dashing Tweeds is the fusion of heritage and technology. This first came to the fore when they created ‘Lumatwill’ Reflective Tweed by weaving 3M retro reflective yarns in the weft with fine quality Merino warps. A whole new concept in tweed was born and laid down the foundations of Dashing Tweeds where they now continue to push the boundaries of woven textiles for men as well as providing functional textiles and clothing for everyday wear.
Having gained a loyal client base through sales of both stock supported fabric and a range of men’s ready to wear and accessories, initial success through their web platform has enabled them to open the Mayfair flagship store at 26 Sackville Street, London W1. The proximity to Savile Row is important as they continue to work with most of the tailors and aim to bring back the days when fashion for men was led by individuals rather than the marketing pressures of large companies.
Dashing Tweeds is very keen to manufacture in Britain and everything in the shop is made in the UK. In growing the brand Dashing Tweeds is keen to make it as accessible as possible, customers can buy cloth, ready to wear garments and have jackets and suits made to measure. Collaboration is also an important aspect, Converse, the American shoe company flew over in 2011 to initiate a new shoe. They manufactured tens of thousands of pairs in Lumatwill Urban Tweed which sold out at tremendous speed and also prepared Guy and Kirsty for dealing with similar requestions from the likes of Hudson shoes and Brooks cycle saddles.
The shop is just the beginning and plans are to design a highly creative collection for global wholesale in a couple of years. At last someone is expanding the area of luxury clothing for men.
Kirsty now as well as designing the new cloth biannual collections is also head of weave at the Royal College of Art and Guy is busy running the shop and designing highly focused ready to wear collections with a team of skilled staff. The shop is a den of urban tweed and modernity. New designs and techniques are constantly being developed and various mills around Britain are busy weaving the cloth, do pop in and visit us soon. We are now based at 26 Sackville Street, London, W1S 3HE. We are open from 10am - 6pm Monday - Friday, and from Saturdays from 11am - 5pm, or you can contact us on 020 7439 8633.