The no-collar condition of the new collarless jacket isn’t so much a defiency as a multi-use, all-season blessing.
Pattern-developments begins on a garment that may or may not be considered a type of workwear.
The onion-stitch blazer: the result of north-west mill and north-west quilting maestro working hand in glove.
The linen suit: a niche pursuit. But, cut precisely, with good cloth, and worn at ease, it has something for everyone.
The seasons have fallen out of season but, to the new Ventile mac and its button-out detachable liner, it matters not a jot.
Hand-loomed by the best in the Isles, there’s only one problem with the cotton cardigan: no one believes it’s cotton.
Made from clever old Ventile cotton, the detachable hood jacket performs commendably come rain or shine.
The new three-button blazer is made using tweed hand-woven by a father-son mill in Ireland’s County Donegal.
Makers come and makers go, but the jersery and hosiery maker in Leicestershire, recently, did both.
About developing garments, making garments, and selling garments — and doing all three at the same time.
The start of the year finds the one-man-mill picking up where he left off: indigo newly wound, ready for weaving.
Time and patience are what’s needed when working within the bounds of one coastline. That and an inside man.
Work begins afresh at the one-man-mill. Rope-dyed indigo this time; two colours warp and one weft ready to wind.
Wool-tweed woven, peacoats made, and now, as work with the one-man-mill draws to a close, papers printed.
Heavyweight hand-made knitwear: needs museum-grade contraptions and a century of so’s expertise to do well.
The seam jacket balances busy wool-cashmere cloth with design that on the face of it appears to do very little.
And so to the looms for the third, final, and easily most painstaking part of the making-tweed-in-London project.
Making bespoke wool-tweed from yarn of British sheep enters stage two: winding of tens of thousands of metres of warp.
Don’t be fooled — the wool reversible jacket is in fact two four-button jackets in the same space-time dimensions.
The jumpers have landed; ten-gauge tuck-stitch jumpers that are at once both absurdly thick and incredibly soft.
With its wales running from left to right not top to bottom, the horizontal cord blazer calls for lateral thinking.
The semi-cutaway-collared shirt is back once again in brushed Cumbrian wool-cotton — a notch better than before.
Grade-A Lancastrian cord and the raglan shirt: for so long in opposite corners of the factory, but today together at last.
The most tightly woven cotton going, Ventile is by right the go-to for action-heroes and top-level twitchers.
The prospect of weaving cloth in London using yarn of rare breeds of British sheep: not one that comes along every day.
Not so much as a whisper in the past few months — but, behind the scenes, at the makers, it’s been full steam ahead.
Similar inputs, similar outputs, similar contraptions in the middle — no wonder factories often look much the same.
It’s still a workshop-in-progress, but the cloth is in, the patterns are in, and, importantly, so are the garments.
The neat jacket lets its three components — wool-cashmere, crisp cotton, natural corozo — speak for themselves.
Over three floors in a narrow Victorian workhouse, shirts of unimpeachable quality are cut, sewn, and finished.
Like the Irish linen from which it is made, the summer-time mac is exact in many respects, and in others easy-going.
The collarless overshirt — a union of Lancastrian cord and cotton-drill — has more going on inside than out.
Few get-ups get a rap so bad, but start with steadying Lancastrian linen, and a new school of linen-ism awaits.
Built in 1895, the workshop has seen better days, but after three months of rehabilitation is ready for visitors.
Made by an outerwear-specialist factory in North London, the pinpoint raglan shirt is made with real sturdiness.
To complement last week’s corduroy tour jacket come two new bottom-half-bedecking instances of wale-wear.
The tour jacket can be slung, rucksack-like, onto the back. Good for touring — or, more likely, being out and about.
The dry-waxed mac marries the weather-proof properties of British Millerain with a bespoke-made wool-cashmere.
The finest mohair mill in the country, doing what it does — on video.
Fifteen “high summer” garments made and sent over to Japan in six short weeks over Christmas and New Year.
Coming soon: a workshop on Boundary St. in London. As its name implies, part of it is for work and part of it is shop.
The newest makers write-up returns to West Yorkshire, and a place at the top table of domestic manufacturing.
Had a hard but character-building upbringing, the birdseye wool-cashmere cloth of the three-button blazer.
Offers little in terms of details, trims, or stitches, the Donegal minimal cardigan, but nor does it much need them.
Makes for deceptively steadying knitwear, the moss stitch — the all-new button-up crewneck cardigan, for instance.
The chalk-stripe woollen seam overshirt: the first fruits of partnership with a mohair mill in West Yorkshire.
The neat jacket might be a simple-looking garment, but below its surface are one or two autumn-aiding peculiarities.
The second serving of a behind-scenes look at West Yorkshire’s — if not England’s — oldest and finest cashmere maker.
Flecked wool-cashmere and ten-wale cord on the outside, warm wool-melton inside, and winter-proof quilting between.
Some soft but steadying Yorkshire-spun lambswool and three fit-for-purpose stitches make up the Nottinghamshire-made three-stitch rollneck jumper.
Production: back on track. The first bunch of autumn-ready garments are off the line at a new London factory.
Take a penny collar, neaten it up, then add a tab to brings its points together — do that and you get a Kelly collar.
First of a two-parter. Words and pictures from a world-beating mill in West Yorkshire in the north of England.
Two sturdy cotton-panama overshirts, with large pocketing, at the light-jacket end of the overshirt continuum.
Cumbria-made cotton pinpoint shirts: expertly woven, satisfyingly crisp, and disciplined with a good wash.
A four-button jacket, made from crisp, comfortable cotton-drill, and intended to be worn in two different ways.
Horn buttons makers in the British Isles weren’t always so tricky to come by, but now, for one well-trod reason or another, this is only one.
Not the most prepossessing of places, the workroom, but a textbook example of the sort of place that the trade really would be lost without.
Shirts made from an organic linen, sourced from a mill between the Pennines and the Calder in West Yorkshire.
Short, three-buttoned and step-collared, the blazer — and a welcome return to lightweight Lancastrian corduroy.
The pockets of mills in south-east Gloucestershire are a prolific source of good wools — not least the charcoal wool-cashmere used for shirting this winter.
Grey and navy moss-stitch crewnecks for Book No. 1, knitted by a family-run mill in Nottingham in numbers that are comfortably counted on one hand.
Occupying wardrobe middle-ground, the turned-down collar overshirt is available for Autumn and Winter 2010 in slate grey and mustard cotton-twill.
The first work jacket of the season is nothing if not winter-proof, constructed as it is from the most stouthearted cotton-twill that north-west England has to offer.
With summer steadily drawing to a close, and the crisp days of early autumn imminent, the first group of new season garments have arrived.
With five generations of experience, our supplier of horn buttons — one of the last few in England — knows a thing or two about making them.
Where would Preface be without a few good bloggers? Still in the stockroom, most likely.
“Always a pleasure, never a chore” goes our new printer’s byline.
Preface is a small set of garments for summer 2010. It has been put together with mills and co-operatives from Lancashire to Cumbria, and from the Midlands to London.
It is no slight pleasure to announce that S.E.H Kelly is now up and running and online.