News & Events

Dashing Tweeds

  • Twelve Men - Toni Castells

    5th March, 2015

    Merino and Silk Herringbone

     

    Second in the series of our Twelve Men story, introducing Toni Castells.

     

    Composer, pianist, classical guitarist, electronic music production, the list of Toni’s talents goes on. He started playing the guitar at home in Barcelona from the age of 4 and his fancination with music making has never ceased. After winning a composing competition with a piece for flute and piano, Toni took a degree specialising in electronic sound engineering. A trip to London for an intended week took Toni on a whole new adventure when he was asked to work on a new album by composer José María Cano, a project lasting many months and securing his love of London.

     

    In terms of style David Bowie is an icon much admired by Toni and a modish reference for his earlier years in bands under the alter ego of Famous Jack. Now as well as working as Senior Lecturer in Music Technology for Imperial College and the London College of Music, Toni composes and performs with his 10 piece band and is currently working on a project with hip hop artist Olly Hodding.

     

    Toni buys very few clothes and like women he has to fall in love with them. Obviously he has a passion for Dashing Tweeds.

     

    Toni fell in love with our Silk and Merino Herringbone, the sheen of the cloth and its lightness he found most appealing. He decided on a single breasted jacket with peaked lapels to elevate his personal style of urban boots and jeans.

     

    Check out Toni’s website to hear his work. http://www.tonicastells.com

     


  • Twelve Men

    2nd February, 2015

     

    Following on from the British Fashion Council's international success of London Collections Men, there is continued growing interest in men's style. During 2015 we will be presenting a selection of men and how they wear Dashing Tweeds.

     

    For the first in our series of Twelve Men we spoke with Jacob Morrish about his love of clothes and art.

     

    Jacob, 31 grew up in Cambridge and studied history of art before working for a large international ship brokers. However, the thrill of being part of the contemporary London art scene proved too alluring. Starting as a sales director for a Mayfair based gallery, Jacob then moved east and now manages the Mya Gallery in Shoreditch.

     

    Jacob’s key to dressing well is putting together colour combinations that he enjoys. Wanting to look unique yet conventional, he is keen on our classic tailored jacket that at a first glance appears to be a city pinstripe. Closer inspection reveals the Clerkenwell Stripe design with a looped boucle yarn and fine worsted merino, woven in the Scottish Borders. Jacob takes great pleasure in the individuality of his new jacket.

     

    Our made to measure service now offers a classic jacket in any of our designs for £650. Please get in touch if you would like any more information.

     


  • London Tweeds

    5th January, 2015

    The history of urban tweed can be traced back to the 1860's when Lord Elcho dressed his Scottish London Regiment in a Hodden Grey wool cloth in order for his troops to blend in with an urban environment. Prior to that bright scarlets were favoured as they disguised the blood stains of shot fellow men and although creating an imposing impression on the foe they also made for an easy target.

    Skip a century or so and urban tweeds are still very much with us. Our urban check design, a grey background with a yellow check inspired by London's parking lines, has the dual function of blending in with town and due to the reflective threads creating a visible target for motorists to hopefully avoid should you be caught in the headlights.

    Tweed, a woven wool twill, is an excellent cloth to wear about town and we are in the midst of a rival of both quality fabrics and tailoring. London the home if the suit, now showcases the most exciting menswear shows in a newly created event set up three years ago by the British Fashion Council; London Collections Men.

    To coincide with LCM the Museum of London commissioned a new London Tweed which was woven by the venerable Lovat Mills of Hawick. Following a classic heritage of designs their elegant checked window pane camouflages well with the cityscape yet has an élan of its own.

    Nortons and sons of Savile Row was chosen by the museum to tailor a suit for English rapper Tinie Tempah and as you can see below the result looks terrific. Mr Tempah, a very dapper dresser will sport his new suit around town during the shows before the museum acquire it for their impressive historical collections of menswear. Hopefully the resurgence of urban tweed and tailoring will continue to be added to the collections for the next century or so.

    Tinie Tempah urban tweed LondonTweed


  • January Sale

    1st January, 2015

    Happy New Year.

    Enjoy 30% off our ready to wear collection until the 31st January.


  • Duffle Coats

    12th December, 2014

     

    Duffle coats as popularised by Royal Naval officers at the turn of the last century have always been associated with style leaders. Field Marshal Montgomery, an avid wearer lent his name to them in the form of the ‘Monty’ coat.

     

    Musician, actor and lothario Dudley Moore I’m sure seduced in them, and of course the Peruvian bear Paddington, who is very much in the public eye at the moment was handed one as his first item of clothing upon entering the country and never took it off.

     

    Traditionally made in the heavy wool from Duffel in Belgium, which was also used for making the drawstring bags of the same name, we have made two coats in Dashing Tweeds. The first is in our felted and brushed Lumatwill Navy Urban Shadow Check, and the second in a most luxurious double faced Cashmere. Both of these designs are woven in Britain, and the coats made in London. We selected Scottish Highland horn for the toggles and fine calves leather for the fixings.

     

    Immediately practical and ironically stylish these are available in our new shop at 26 Sackville Street, London W1S 3HE. Get your paws on one before they all sell out.


  • Made to Measure

    5th December, 2014

     

     

    We have just launched out new made to measure service. Simply drop into our shop at 26 Sackville Street, London W1S 3HE, try on one of our fitting samples and choose a cloth. We will note any amendments required to the pattern and you can decide on lapel shapes, number of buttons and pockets etc. As simple as that. If you wanted any samples of the different fabrics we have in stock, please get in touch.

     


  • Christmas Drinks

    19th November, 2014

     

    Come and celebrate our first Christmas at 26 Sackville Street, London W1S 3HE. Our new urban tweeds are here as well as our seriously exciting ready to wear collection.
    Choose a few presents whilst sipping some mull and if you whisper ‘mistletoe’ into Holly’s ear we will give you an Xmas discount of 10%.

    See you on 17th December anytime noon till nine.


  • Sherlock Holmes

    18th October, 2014

     

     

    The man who never lived and will never die is the aptly named new major exhibition at the Museum of London. As part of the show, the museum commissioned a short film about the history of tweed and its move from a rural to urban environment. We are very proud to be featured and you can hear Kirsty talk about the history of tweed.

     


  • Cycle Blazer

    25th September, 2014

     

    We bring you the most practical and elegant Cycle Blazer. A classic three button patched pocketed jacket cut in our Lumatwill urban tweed with a variety of details to make your city bike travel as effortless as possible.

     

     

    The centre vent fastens up to a pair of buttons reminiscent of a morning coat, revealing a tough extra reflective panel which as well as increasing visibility this also makes it easier to clean off mud splashes. The cuff straps have the same fabric which is revealed when they are in the tighter position. The best feature for comfort on the bike is the action shoulder, a pleat which opens up when you lean towards the handle bars. Built in elastic pulls the shoulder pleat back into shape.

     

     

    Do drop into our shop at 26 Sackville Street, London W1S 3HE to try one on. They are £1,200.00 and we can make one for you in any of our urban tweeds.

     

     


  • New A/W 14 Cloth Collection

    5th September, 2014

    For the autumn season of 2014 we have further developed our core concept of tweeds for town. For modern urban tweed sportswear we have looked at the colours of cityscapes and woven them in wool. Shadow checks of pavement grey juxtapose rectilinear yellow yarns portraying London’s road markings. Fine strands of reflective yarn add a technical and functional elements to some of the designs. For the evening we have woven fine black Merino wools with a herringbone of dark navy silk, an original fabric for nocturnal mingling. No brown in town may well be an advisable adage but for the weekend visit to Kensington and the royal parks our British wool and silk fabrics in a new triangular weave structure will make into a splendid coat whilst on the quest to find a conker.

     

    A vast range of skills and many lifetimes of experience are required to create tweed. From the shepherd’s tending their flocks through to shearers, carders, dyers, spinners, designers, weavers and finishers, many talented artisans are involved. This season we are exploring the later, the often unsung skills of wool finishers.

     

    Wool is woven in a ‘greasy’ state and then any imperfections are hand darned before the final washing of the cloth. Many mills used to finish the cloth themselves in the rivers by which they are often situated and indeed where the power to drive the looms used to come from via mill wheels. Nowadays as the number of mills have declined and specialisation is the key to creating a luxury fabric, finishers have become separate establishments full of highly skilled workers and remarkable machines. We toured the best finishers in Britain including Schofields Dyers and Finishers on the Gala river, Galashiels, a tributary of the river Tweed in order to learn more of the mysterious art of finishing and what hidden techniques we could utilise.

     

     

    The first process that all cloth goes through is a scouring, washing and rubbing over wooden rollers in the water of the Gala. The time this is performed for effects the density of the cloth and how much felting of the wool fibres occurs. We have experimented with a longer more milled finish on our Navy Urban Shadow 4 design and it’s interesting how the cloth becomes, heavier more ‘woolly’ and with a greater blending of the yarn colours.

     

    On our tour of Schofields we inquired as to the use of a splendid looking piece of equipment consisting of electric wires connected to plates and an absolutely huge press which I imagined Dr Frankenstein would use for his collection of pressed Triffids. It was in fact a heat press, which gives a fabulous flat finish to cloth lapped over the heated plates and given several tons of pressure. It seemed a perfect way to give a lustre and smoothness to our wool and silk designs. The finer black Merino wool and silk we are using on our smoking jacket now shimmers wonderfully and the tougher British wool and silk designs have a desirable range of textures after the heat press finish.

     

    We are always keen to give heritage techniques a new airing; one of our exciting ideas this season is to wax wool and create a totally waterproof woollen cloth. Waxing is the oldest way to waterproof woven cloth, the inventive Chinese were making waxed silk umbrellas at the time King Cnut was battling against the waves over here. One of the world leaders in waxing is Halley Stevensons, situated in Dundee and with over 150 years of experience. They were delighted to wax our indigo and plum peak designs in Merino wool. We chose a desert waxed finish which doesn’t feel too oily and gives the wool a soft drape. We have used our indigo waxed peak design to make a wonderful quilted outdoor jacket as a ready to wear special this autumn.

     

    Finally one can never really have enough luxury so we have indulged in creating a double faced Cashmere cloth with the expert weavers Joshua Ellis who specialise in such extravagances. They have been weaving cashmere for well over a hundred years and possess double beam looms which interweave two designs simultaneously thus creating a cloth with two faces. We chose sumptuous navy cashmere for one side and a lambswool in our seasons urban shadow check for the other. We are using this in our duffle coat and the cloth is for sale as well, you can decide which is the face for you.


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