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Thursday, 25 November 2010

A Burberry memory...

Many moons ago, when my eyes were opening to the world of designer labels, a Burberry handbag was my very first lust.  I remember Christmas day, opening the wrapping paper of my gift, to reveal the distinctive tartan check and thinking I'd died and gone to heaven.  
It was love at first sight and i felt the luckiest girl alive!

The British label was founded in 1856 by the 21 year old Thomas Burberry.  The former draper's apprentice opened his own shop in Basingstoke, Hamphire, England to outfit the local gentry in functional gear for sport. 

Thomas Burberry

Thomas Burberry created the start of a business that would adorn the backs of many men. In 1879 he produced a fabric that was waterproof, breathable and hardwearing under the most toughest of conditions.  It served men from the WWI trenches to the polar regions of Antarctica.  
He patented the fabric in 1880 and the popular coat was named -the 'Gaberdine' (after the fabric).  
It later became known by it's label when King Edward VII had the habit of repeatedly saying -
"get me my Burberry"!

Burberry's Equestrian Knight Logo was created in 1901.   It bears the latin word PRORSUM which means forward.

In 1914 his company was commissioned by the British War Office to adapt the earlier officers coat to suit conditions of the current warfare.  The trench coat was born and would become one of the most iconic designs of all time.
 Not long after the war in 1924, they added their trademark check pattern to the lining of the coat.  It would sit there barely noticed for the next 50 years.

In the 1920s and 30s he clothed the leisure classes of the 'smart set'. Designing for men and women outfits for golf, shooting, fishing, cycling, riding, archery, tennis and skiing.

During WWII they produced waterproofs for all the services and then in the 1940s, 50s and 60s the trench coat became a legend after gracing the screen on many Hollywood greats.

The fashion house is still thriving today, reinventing its self with campaigns featuring many British celebrities.  Including Kate Moss, Agyness Dean and most recently Harry Potter actress, Emma Watson.

Images taken from Google Image.

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