Tuesday, 20 January 2015

The Finishing Touches

Just a few comments on our fashion show last week. I realise how important it is to have a bit of fun and accessories are a way to inject a touch of humour. For instance, when we showed the  military coat with the sheepskin collar I added a sheepskin glove which I placed in one of the pockets with two fingers pointing out, only to notice at the last moment that  it was suggesting and I put this in polite terms, "Go Away", I immediately turned the glove around so that it would be interpreted as "Peace".




With a nod to the 70s I had made several leather  H medallions to hang languidly around polo neck sweaters which instantly transformed the whole look. The main theme of the show had been to promote wool and British sheep so we featured several sheepskin pieces one being a Gilet which when the model walked down the cat walk I asked him that when he reached the halfway point to take off the Gilet and to reverse it revealing the Hackett logo imitating the branding of sheep.





For the finale the model wore a bold Prince of Wales suit made from British wool and woven into cloth by Fox Bros. I teamed this with a  brown bowler hat and umbrella to reinforce our logo and decorated the bowler with patches of material to match the suit, it made a strong impact, whether we sell any remains to be seen, but I had a lot of fun putting it together.

Jeremy Hackett

Tuesday, 13 January 2015

London Collections: Men

I realise that perhaps it's a little bit late in the day to be wishing you Happy New Year. I'm not sure what is the etiquette concerning how long into the New Year it is acceptable to greet people with Happy New Year?

I had intended to update you with the build up to London Men's Collection but out of the blue the Editor of How To Spend It magazine online invited me to write a daily journal for their column Diary of A Somebody for five days on the trot leading up to our Fashion show Sheep Shape and London Fashion. So if you are vaguely interested in what I have been up to recently then you may like to visit their website. On the evening of our fashion show and dinner we commissioned the artist Clym to sketch the backstage goings on, below is an example of his work. My Sussex Spaniel, Muffin made her debut on the catwalk and was an instant hit.

Happy New Year!

Jeremy Hackett








 

Monday, 15 December 2014

A Christmas Doodle

When you open your presents on Christmas morning and discover that a favourite aunt who is joining you for Christmas lunch has bought you a garish sweater, it is only polite to feign absolute delight at such a thoughtful gift and being so enamoured with it that you insist on wearing it the whole day. Whilst these novelty sweaters are currently all the rage I sense that the next day you will be putting it in the back of the cupboard never to be seen again. Of course, one of the guests much to your embarrassment is bound to post it on Facebook.

Merry Christmas,

Jeremy Hackett


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Lisbon Treat

For years, whenever I met Portuguese journalists they would invariably ask me:

" And when are you going to open a shop in Lisbon?"

"One day..." was my stock reply having no notion when that might be. Finally, we have taken the plunge and opened a shop on what must be in the most beautiful boulevard in Lisbon, the tree lined Avenida da Liberdade that seems more like an intimate Champs Élysées.

Arriving in Lisbon for the first time, I was immediately captivated by this historic and romantic atmospheric city and wondered why I had never ventured there before. I was booked into a brand spanking new boutique hotel, Valverde, directly opposite our shop. Unlike most boutique hotels that tend to the kitsch, it was modern without being self consciously so. I have no doubt that this little gem will be welcoming guests for generations to come.



Strolling over to our shop the next morning for a round of interviews I noticed that stalls were opening up selling bric a brac and antiques. No sooner than I was through with my interviews than I was back out on the street browsing amongst the stalls for that elusive treasure. I rummaged through a tray of cufflinks and came across a vintage tie pin probably made in the 1960s in the shape an umbrella and bowler hat. It immediately reminded me of the Hackett logo and at five euro's it was a steal and I thought a good omen. A party was planned for that evening and I duly arrived by Aston Martin. Despite the torrential rain the shop was mobbed. My PR gleefully informed me that another brand had organised a party for the same evening which they postponed when they realised everyone was attending the Hackett party, my apologies to that brand.



I had very little time to explore the city but what was apparent to me was that that Lisbon appeared to be paved with tiles. There was tiling everywhere I looked, the promenade was intricately tiled, the pavements made up of broken pieces and the cafe fronts decorated too.  If the writer Samuel Johnson had been Japanese he may have been tempted to say of Lisbon, "When a man is tiled of Lisbon he is tiled of life" To foster good relationships with the locals we had commissioned our own Portuguese made tiles and had them laid on our shop floor. It could be said that I spent a night on the tiles.



Jeremy Hackett

Monday, 24 November 2014

Down Under & Other Travels

Just back from Australia, can't sleep so thought I would write my blog, which is sure to send me to sleep if not you.

I have been travelling a fair bit these last few weeks. It kicked off with a Eurostar trip to Le Touquet, a charming seaside resort popular in the 1930s with the likes of Noël Coward, HG Wells and Cecil Beaton. The reason I was in Le Touquet was to celebrate the opening of a new Hackett shop close to the five star Westminster hotel, a grand hotel in the traditional style with an almost untouched Art Deco interior and where I spent a comfortable night after our opening party. We were privileged with a visit from The Lord Mayor who conferred on me the honour of the freedom of the Town and presented me with a gold medal with the words that Tony Blair had been the last person to have had the honour bestowed on him so depending on your politics, I was in good company. In Paris, the next day, I took the opportunity to check out our shops and it being Saturday I was pleased to see that they were buzzing.

Interior of the Westminster hotel Le Touquet


Lunch at Sumers General Store




 I then flew to Madrid for the Spanish GQ awards where I was to be presented with Man of Style award, they obviously have never seen me on a Sunday morning the worst for wear after a night on the town. At the event I sat next to David Gandy,  who picked up Man of the Year award, I barely recognised him with his clothes on.

Needing a break from all the glamour of the awards I headed to Australia to visit family in Melbourne. Now, this is the thing with the fashion business you never really switch off. I arranged to have dinner with a long standing customer Henry Bucks, the best Menswear business in Melbourne followed by a visit to their Collins  St store and the Hackett department; I still find it  a bit odd to travel thousands of miles and to be confronted with Hackett products. I then looked up my friends who have a shoe business called Double Monk and probably have the most comprehensive selection of English shoes in Australia.

Somers General Store on the Mornington Peninsular


View from the beach house towards Philips Island.

My office in London had very kindly organised a telephone interview with The Financial Times, because of the time difference it was scheduled for 11.30pm, which after drinks with dinner with Henry Bucks (and still feeling jet lagged) I only hoped I didn't  slur my words. I then received an urgent email requesting my answers to a number of questions for a London magazine. Determined to make the most of my short holiday I travelled down to the family beach house on the Mornington Penninsular for the day before making the long trek home. And if you are not sleepy after reading that, I am and I'm going back to bed, sweet dreams.



 Jeremy Hackett

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Legless

Last weekend my house was crowded with models, there to be photographed in my garden by the fashion photographer Garda Tang. 

A grey backdrop was erected and the models had all been asked to wear their own clothes. There was no styling, make up or lighting, relying purely on the overcast light of the day. I was struck by the ambition of these young people, three of them were at University, amongst the others was an artist,  an actor and another studying photography. None of them saw modelling as a career.




My role on the day was to keep them fed and watered, I was surprised how much food they consumed and yet they were stick thin.  Although not wishing to intrude on the shoot I shot a couple of pictures which reminded me of the photographer  Larry Clark and no, I wasn't legless at the time.

Jeremy Hackett

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Suited and Booted


The other week I drove down to the Chelsea football team training ground in Surrey for a photo session with the squad and to issue them with their new off pitch kit. It consisted of a three piece suit made from a English worsted cloth in a subtle navy glen check with a Chelsea blue over check, teamed with a pale blue shirt, knitted striped tie, and brown suede chukka boots. Having just written that last sentence it suddenly occurred to me that next season they should be wearing Chelsea boots.


The team photo was duly taken and as Jose Mourinho hurried away I managed to snap a quick photo. To me he is football's answer to George Clooney. 

I considered asking Jose if he'd do up his tie but then I thought he would probably tell me to get knotted.

Jeremy Hackett