William was an avid collector. He collected things that amused, intrigued or inspired him. A lifetime of collecting, whether a scrap of antique fabric, a piece of Georgian glass, a dilapidated chair for its shape, form and detail or vintage pieces from a flea market for their patterns and colours, have left us with a rich archive to draw upon. The seed of inspiration for our Spring/Summer 2021 fabric collections came from a beautiful handcrafted throw that William bought in a market in San Cristobal, Mexico, at least twenty years ago. This started us on a journey…
The ancient Mayan, Inca and Aztec civilisations flourished in central and south America between 200 AD and 1500 AD. Politically and culturally sophisticated, these peoples built incredible structures and cities and created dynamic societies. Whilst today the cities and pyramids they built lie ruined or remain hidden away beneath the jungle, their descendants can still be found in Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, indeed all the ways down to Peru. Most importantly many of the ancient skills and traditions survive. Vibrantly coloured hand dyed, hand woven and hand embroidered textiles and clothing are still to be found. The colours, patterns and textures produced by these remarkable artisans have inspired our collections this season.
William probably bought the throw to wear to a fancy dress party knowing him. Yet it ended up in one of our many Pandora-like cupboards. Twenty years later it has become this seasons starting point. William always looked to the past for inspiration and we have done the same. The result is Palenque - a collection of beautiful printed patterns, rich artisan embroideries, woven stripes and geometrics.