PLEASE INTRODUCE YOURSELF
I am a tailor, of sorts! I make mens accessories, neck ties, bowties, cummerbunds and more. My work uses classic tailoring techniques, learnt over the 20 years I have been designing and cutting for an alarming variety of other brands and designers.
WHAT MADE YOU WANT TO START YOUR BUSINESS?
My business was created six years ago to fill a real gap in the men’s styling market. There is very little choice when I comes to accessories for men, other then the generic ‘designer’ option. With my knowledge of fashion history and craft skills, along with wanting to make a business that is truly sustainable (locally sourced cloth with only 2% wastage) it was really a no brainer for me to set up a studio.
HOW DOES YOUR TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE?
Some days I deliver workshops or teach a class, but most days start rather late with clients consultations. I prefer to work late into the night once the business day is over, cutting and stitching orders in my London (Holborn) Studio.
WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF YOUR JOB?
I think handing the finished work over to the client is the jobs greatest reward. My clients send pictures of themselves wearing their pieces and often share that the work became a perfect gift and a wonderful reminder of their big day.
AND WHAT IS THE WORST PART?
A strange question, as when you do the thing you love there are very few down sides, but I guess, as with all businesses, there is always an insane amount of admin and let’s be honest, who likes that!
WHAT IS THE BEST PIECE OF ADVICE YOUʼVE BEEN GIVEN?
As a young design student I was lucky enough to have the late great designer Joe Casely-Hayford as one of my tutors. I once presented a project to him that, to my horror, he immediately tore up and told me to go away and do it all again. I asked what was so wrong with the work. He said, it was good, but I was better. Stop making work you think people want, make something you know is good, even if it is a difficult proposition. That stuck with me.
WHAT WOULD YOU WANT COUPLES TO KNOW ABOUT WHAT YOU DO?
My service offers truly unique outcomes. I have worked with many couples to create, neck ties, bow ties, cravats, ascots, cummerbunds and matching pocket squares amongst other typologies. All pieces are hand made and designed to suit the groom or best man, grooms men, father of the groom / bride. I am able to match pieces to your wedding colours as well as come up with a story that allows everyone to have a different (yet coordinating) design.
DO YOU HAVE ANY ADVICE FOR COUPLES PLANNING A WEDDING?
A wedding is a wonderful event. Plan everything to perfection, make the day into whatever you both desire it to be and on the big day, if the cake falls on the floor or the DJ will only play The Bird’y song all night, remember you are marring your true love in front of your dear friends and family, a wedding is always a joyful event, lean into it, laugh it off and make memories.
WHAT WOULD YOU DO IF YOU DIDNʼT WORK IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY?
I am lucky enough to have two sides to my career. As well as my craft business, for the past twenty years, I have been a freelance fashion designer for a variety of designers and teacher at the renowned fashion University, Central Saint Martins.
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO IN YOUR TIME OFF?
Generally I try to get to as many exhibitions and arts events as I can, I like to horde research inspiration for future projects, but I will not lie, I am a real couch monster at heart and can devour box-sets with terrifying zeal!
A holiday is a time to rest and recharge. Anywhere is fine by me, as long as it is remote, ancient and inspiring, so quite a tall order I guess!
WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 10 YEARS?
10 years is a long time. At my age, still doing what I do would be a blessing. I am always striving to perfect my craft and willing to learn, expanding my reach and working to always improve the services I provide. In the short term, I am getting married in. 2021 so will be trying to practice what I preach.