For Autumn 2016 our design team focused their research upon two very different groups of people, both responsible for contributing towards our shared sartorial identity in the 20th century; the Bloomsbury Set and the Royal Family. ‘The Royals – style icons?’, you may ask. Absolutely.
The Windsors, their clothes and how they wear them are as iconically British as it gets. As a group we presume you’re pretty aware of them… However, it’s the Bloomsbury Set that left some of us in the office shouting for Siri.
Worry not – here are the basics to get you up to speed on these innovative independents.
WHO WERE THEY?
The Bloomsbury Set was a wildly influential and pretty ballsy group of young British creatives from the early 1900s, which included writers, intellectuals, philosophers and artists. Associated with the area of London that gave them their name, they were known for their unconventional lifestyles as much as their artistic endeavours.
Virginia Woolf: Afraid of? No. In awe of, and retrospectively concerned for? Yes.
E. M. Forster: Nominated for 13 Nobel Prizes for Literature.
Roger Fry: Art critic and post-impressionist painter, founder of The Omega Workshops and blue plaque proprietor.
WHAT DID THEY DO, AND WHERE?
Woolf’s sister, Vanessa Bell, had a lovely house on Bloomsbury Square and they loved throwing dinner parties. These provided a haven for her creative friends to get together (sometimes quite literally), present ideas and discuss the world around them. This environment spawned a plethora of creative side projects including exhibitions, anthologies, novels, university courses, marriages, children and some scandalous controversies. Neighbouring Fitzroy Square played host to Robert Fry’s Omega Workshops. He believed that artists could design, make and sell their own works – and we agree.
Make sure you keep an eye out for more Bloomsbury-inspired product filtering through in the coming weeks.