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Sir Paul Smith Shows British Collection in London

The designer flew the flag for local manufacturing on Wednesday with a small presentation of a capsule of coats and suits.

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THREAD COUNT: Sir Paul Smith flew the flag for local manufacturing on Wednesday with a small presentation of The British Collection — a capsule of coats and suits made from fabrics handmade on Yorkshire looms. He staged the presentation at Essie, the Piccadilly purveyor of high-end Persian rugs, and there was a reason for that. “Some of these carpets from Iran take 25 years to make, some of them have 600 knots to the inch,” said Smith during a walk-through. I wanted to show the handwork involved in both.” Smith’s collection featured a chalk-striped suit with stripes that began in earnest at the shoulder and then faded to nothing at the edge of the jacket. “The stripes just fall off — and fade to navy,” he said. Smith paired that and other suits — made from fabrics featuring exploded Prince of Wales checks; thick, shadowy stripes; or woven flowers — with chambray shirts and orange neon pens in the pockets. Among the accessories were kilim-like scarves with storks and giraffes wandering across them, and tapestry fabric shoes with musical notes on them. Smith said the accessories are a taster of what’s to come later this month on his Paris men’s runway. “My men’s and women’s shows are going to be very rock’n’roll — The Doors era — with ethnic qualities woven in,” he said.