Around this time last year we had the good fortune to purchase a jacket that we had been hunting/discussing/obsessing about for sometime. The Holy Grail of wax cotton jackets known as an Ursula Suit or Admiralty Suit. One year on from our initial posting regarding the suit, the story still excites and fascinates us, and it is still the unquestionable favourite in our collection.
During the Boer War, British soldiers would send home keepsakes to loved ones. Made with fabric torn from their tunics, the soldiers hand decorated the patches with personalized messages of love to those waiting back home. “Torn from my coat I send to thee this war worn piece of old khaki”
I have a real weakness for old wax jackets, June and July have been hard as the heat has meant I can’t rock my favourite old Barbour the default setting on my wardrobe. Despite it definitely not being wax jacket weather it hasn’t stopped us hunting down some beautiful pieces. While most of the old wax bike jackets we find end up the other side of the Atlantic cruising around Nolita or Lower East Side or wherever our friends in New York sell them, we still like to keep a good collection in the Showroom and Earlham Street store for discerning customers.
This was my favourite of recent finds, not many things breakdown to such an amazing patina as these old wax jackets. A great looking late 60’s Belstaff, Sammy Miller label with an unusual blue tartan lining shown above.
A little worse for wear this morning and with no appointments, I just could not face the mountain of paperwork that I should have been tackling. So instead I decided to trash the showroom. Every few months a red mist seems to come over me and when I come to I find myself surrounded by heaps of clothes that I have piled on the floor. I then get the fear that I will never be able to get things back together again.
As always around this time of year, we find ourselves in the midst of a heatwave looking longingly to the nights drawing in and the temperature cooling so we can crack open our Autumn Winter collection. This year is particularly interesting for it seems that for both us and the majority of our customers, inspiration is coming from a snow capped landscape. From Shackleton to Scott, Mallory to Bonington. The back drop moving as the era, from the Artic to Everest to the Cresta run of St Moritz, there is a growing fascination and interest. One that we are more than happy to indulge as it has been something that we have been hooked on for a while. So with London feeling decidedly muggy, try and stay cool and enjoy!
“Why do you want to climb Mount Everest?” ….. “Because it’s there” George Herbert Leigh Mallory 1886 –1924
This is my only nod towards the sorrow of the last few weeks. It felt like an omen when a week before the start of the World Cup we found a 1966 final program and two ticket stubs. How wrong could I have been!