Is Scotland abroad? According to an employee of the British Fashion Council it’s in Europe somewhere (true story).
Thankfully Scottish designers Iona Crawford, Belinda Robertson and Bebaroque found their way to London without a hitch.
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The three designers have joined up to open a luxury brand showroom during fashion week. The diversity of their group has worked in their favour with the capital’s fashion pack buzzing about Bebaroque’s hosiery, Robertson’s Scottish cashmere and Crawford’s printed silks.
Iona’s signature prints are reminisent of a kaleidoscope with many small square images connecting together to form a colourful whole. She shared her new fashion film with me at the showroom within the Hardy Tree Gallery near London St Pancras. The designer and artist continues with her luxury home ware line ‘The Art of Living’ and has plans to visit China and America in the coming months. This year will be ever changing for Bebaroque too who are welcoming a new addition to the clan behind the scenes. I think mini embroidered tights for fashionable babies could be the way forward.
Another member of Team Scotland, Dundee jeweller Jane Gowans has found success at fashion week too with her Captain collection. Jane was recently nominated for a Drapers Accessories Award and has seen her jewellery stocked by luxury retail giant Harvey Nichols. During a private appointment at Somerset House we chatted about the reaction to her latest work (overwhelmingly positive) and tried on various combinations of the jewellery (every girls dream).
The nautical-inspired collection of ten key pieces was made from 18kt gold vermeil and solid sterling silver. Jane was inspired by an old photo of her grandfather in his naval uniform and has transformed ropes, knots and compass points into burnished rings, studs, necklaces and bracelets.
The Jetty ring was a favourite and can be stacked with other pieces to create a powerful statement look. Amidst project managing the development of her new country house Jane has managed to pull together a contemporary jewellery collection that is very wearable and continues to win praise with press, buyers and clientele.
This showcase of Autumn/Winter collections has raised the profile of all four designers south of the border. Considering the confusion about Scotland’s location it’s great to see these fashion pioneers putting our bonnie country on the map.