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Local Designers We’re Loving – In Celebration of London Fashion Week

Unsplash - Fashion
Fashion
February 2021
Reading time 5 minutes

The FROW is coming to your front room

Kicking off on Friday, and running until the 23rd February, London Fashion Week has gone digital – and (for once), everyone’s invited. With a host of new designers added to the line-up this year (as well as all of your familiar favourites, too), you can browse and stream the online schedule in full to ensure you don’t miss any of your favourite shows and collections. There may be less fuss and frills this year, but we’re still celebrating bringing the FROW to our front room by rounding up a few of our favourite local designers and boutiques to support now.

All scheduled shows will air at LondonFashionWeek.co.uk 

Meet the Designers...

Harlow Collection
Harlow Collection launched in January last year and was created by Hannah Wilson, a British Vogue featured designer. Each piece in the collection has been designed, developed and handmade in the North East. Designed to be timeless and classic, each has been carefully-produced to emphasise the natural beauty of the female silhouette, in the hopes of reducing waste and building a capsule collection for women – think classic dresses, skirts and tops and luxurious accessories to pair with them.
Meet the Maker: Hannah Wilson, from Washington, graduated with a degree in Fashion Enterprise from Cleveland College of Art & Design and went onto complete an internship at a bridal boutique as well as working at several retail shops before launching Harlow Collection.
Support online: harlowcollection.co.uk

Salome
Salome was founded by Newcastle-based Kellie Daniels in 2015 after people expressed interest in the original jewellery she created for herself. Following its launch, the brand was swiftly snapped up by Edinburgh’s high-end store and Wolf&Badger. Salome has since grown into an international brand. Kellie creates the jewellery using hand-selected and natural-cut, precious and semi-precious stones from around the world, including ruby, sapphire, pearl, emerald and grey opal, and the result is truly beautiful.
Meet the Maker: Kellie originally hails from Louisiana in the US. Salome is named after her mum who sadly passed away when she was a teenager.
Support online: salomedesigns.co.uk

Sarah Hickey Jewellery
All of Sarah’s pieces are designed and handmade in the pretty market town of Hexham. From classic necklaces and bracelets to more modern ear cuff and ring designs, there’s a beautiful piece for everyone here whether it’s for a special occasion or just a little treat.
Meet the Maker: Sarah is passionate about the visual language of jewellery. She’s been making jewellery for 20 years – so she certainly knows what she’s talking about.
Support online: sarahhickey.co.uk

Sister Story
Nicky and Antonia choose to work with natural stones and pearls to produce unique pieces with the weight and drape of luxury. Their aim is to ensure their pieces are treasured, shared and passed on to those you love for many generations to come.
Meet the Makers: Nicky lives in the North East and her husband is North East born-and-bred, but she’s lived all over the world with her husband including Africa, India and China, which is where she really got into the business side of jewellery when I was living abroad. Antonia is ‘a Jack-of-all-trades but a master of none,’ in her words and they’ve joined together to create Sister Story. Find out more here.
Support online: sisterstory.co.uk

Studio Courtenay
Escape fast fashion and head to Studio Courtenay's vintage-inspired responsible fashion hub instead. Their products are designed and made with deadstock materials. The Studio Courtenay Collection brings an appreciation of the exceptional skills and elegant tailoring of the past. Each piece is designed to be both comfortable to wear and to ensure you feel fabulous in yourself.
Meet the Maker: Fashion lecturer Louisa Rogers, based in Newcastle, is the creative director. Louisa studied Fashion Photography & Styling at the London College of Fashion before moving on to a Creative Entrepreneurship MA at Newcastle University. She is a founding committee member of Colour Collective UK, a not-for-profit organisation that promotes colour education through multidisciplinary workshops and lectures.
Support online: studiocourtenay.com

Hand Dyed Shoe Co
Hand Dyed Shoe Company began in 2014 in a spare bedroom, firstly crafting small key rings and accessories from scrap leather from the furniture trade. From there, a vision of individually-made, artisan bespoke shoes began. The very first pair sold in 2016. Since then, HDSCo has developed into an award-winning, globally-recognised brand which crafts unique shoes to celebrate individuality and creativity among men around the world.
Meet the Maker: Simon Bourne, The Shoe Guy based in Lanchester, is the founder and creative director of The Hand Dyed Shoe Company.
Support online: handdyedshoeco.com

And the Boutiques...

What About This
What About This are dedicated to providing stylish, affordable and practical clothing for everyday women to see you through every occasion. Whether that's on the school run, drinks with the girls (when we can), or workwear – they’ve got you covered. What About This is part of a group of brands created by The Office Rocks Ltd, a community marketing company established in May 2015 by Laura Middleton from the playroom of her home. They’re a team of 12 women of all shapes and sizes, aged from 20 to 35+ based at Sunderland Marina.
Support online: whataboutthis.com

Jules B
This leading independent retailer, which strives to give you the very best in luxury fashion and quality service, needs no introduction. In 1984 husband and wife team Julian and Rhona Blades opened the doors of their first womenswear store in Jesmond. They had one aim – to bring a new, intelligent offering of womenswear to the North East. The store became an instant success and it wasn’t long before the word spread, with demand necessitating the launch of Jules B for men in the neighbouring premises.
Support online: julesb.co.uk

Escape Boutique
The brands here are chosen for their interesting shapes and designs but always with value and practicality in mind. The brands include Maison Scotch, Dr Martens, Birkenstock, Tutti & Co and Orla Kiely. After a year of planning, finding the perfect shop and sourcing their brands, Escape opened in March 2004 in the North East coastal town of Whitley Bay. Very quickly they saw a huge gap for a ladies boutique that specialised in the 25–30+ market and, a year later, they expanded taking over the neighbouring shop to create the bigger Escape Boutique as it exists today.
Support online: escapeboutique.co.uk

Eleven Boutique
Eleven was launched from a love of all things fashion and the frustration of limited, budget friendly shopping options to curate a wardrobe. Founder Sally wanted a unique and inviting space to showcase the simple, effortless style Eleven is well known for, so in 2014 when the opportunity arose to convert a beautiful, historic former chapel into a new shopping destination, she took a leap of faith and Eleven was born.
Support online: eleven-cramlington.myshopify.com

The Renaissance Boutique
With a rising concern about the impact of fast fashion on our environment, The Renaissance Boutique was born to bring a growing new trend for purchasing sustainable pre-loved designer wear and accessories to Alnwick and online. Hand-selected, new (or nearly new) premium products at a fraction of their retail price can be found here.
Support online: therenaissanceboutique.com

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