Great Britain, and London in particular, has been a major fashion hub for many decades, home to some of the most famous brands in the world. British fashion has always offered a wide range of choice for people from all walks of life. From Lacoste trainers to Ted Baker dresses, but probably most renowned of all are the luxury fashion brands that come from this little island. Here are six of the best.
In her first few seasons as Artistic Director at French label Chloé, McCartney had trouble finding her groove, but then she hit her stride with funky, glamorous designs. Following the launch of her own eponymous label in 2001, her dresses became omnipresent red-carpet staples as she adopted a more sophisticated, tailored aesthetic. As a fully committed vegetarian, the use of leather and fur has never been an option across the brand, making them completely cruelty-free.
If you’re looking for a truly iconic luxury British brand there is none better than that of the late Alexander “Lee” McQueen, who created his eponymous brand in 1992. The company is based in London with numerous offices around the world. The brand is now a luxury modern fashion house with a host of celebrity designers and longtime creative director Sarah Burton still at the helm.
McQueen launched his McQ diffusion line in 2006, offering a stylish and affordable option for people to wear every day. In 2020 the McQ line metamorphosed into MCQ, a new and exciting project based on the blockchain.
Vivienne Westwood is arguably one of the most influential fashion designers in the UK. With a career spanning over five decades, she’s responsible for an entire style of fashion, and a household name all over the world. The designer and businesswoman has been designing and creating fashionable, daring, and beautiful clothes and accessories since the 1970s, when she was the doyen of the London punk movement, and responsible for creating much of the punk fashion of the time. These days, products from Vivienne Westwood are sold in 10 dedicated shops around the UK, including the flagship London store in Conduit Street. Westwood has many other stores located throughout the world.
Oliver Spencer founded the British fashion brand Oliver Spencer in 2002. A shopkeeper and self-taught tailor, Spencer’s passion for clothing and fabric was ignited by working in a market stall.
As well as creating a range of high-quality clothes, Oliver Spencer wanted to bring a modern style to premium tailoring. Over the years, the store has also expanded into online businesses and four more shops in London. Oliver Spencer goods can also be found in many shopping centres, department stores, and boutiques.
In 1879, Burberry’s founder, Thomas Burberry, created a kind of hardwearing, waterproof fabric called gabardine, which became one of the company’s most famous products. Roald Amundsen, the first person to reach the South Pole, famously wore a Burberry coat on the expedition.
It was Christopher Bailey’s fresh, linear approach to classic English style that turned the brand into one of the industry’s heavy hitters in 2001 when he took over the artistic reins of the company. With Ricardo Tisci at the helm, Burberry has now taken on a more youthful look with his monogrammed mark and check print.
The Ted Baker brand sells men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, as well as shoes. In addition to its eclectic and extremely commercial fashion range, Ted Baker is also known for its intricate high-quality design and distinctive use of pattern and colour.
Among Britain’s fastest-growing lifestyle brands, Ted Baker is one of the most popular. The company was founded by Ray Kelvin in 1988 as a menswear store in Glasgow and the rest is history! In addition to menswear and womenswear, Ted Baker also offers a range of lipsticks, fragrances, eyewear, boots, and watches. As well as having a chain of stores in the UK and the US, Ted Baker also has a presence in some of the most prestigious UK department stores, including John Lewis, Selfridges, and House of Fraser.