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Off the record, October 25 2014

This week’s birthdays, bashes and benefits.

K-Way is OK in UK

Given the recent stormy weather, outerwear brand K-Way (originally French, now controlled from Italy) has picked a good time to open a shop at London’s Spitalfields market. Wearing the product well at the opening is Lorenzo Boglione, international sales vice-president for the Turin-based brand, flanked by Fraser Hamilton and Jason Fairclough of GLD Group, K-Way’s UK sales force. The rainwear specialist is becoming a terrace lads’ favourite.

Happy 125th birthday to Lee

Lee launched its 125 Years collection with a party at its London Neal Street store last week. To mark the birthday, the denim label invited friends of the brand to browse guest edits from designers Donwan Harrell, Emma François, Örjan Andersson, Sarah and Carol Piron and Gregory Derkenne to music from Norwegian DJ duo Project Fresh Socks. Drapers met president Gilles Laumonier over a dark ‘n’ stormy cocktail, pictured here with team Lee’s Brigitte Peeters, Liam Ormonde, Damien Ladwa, Simon Fisher and Scott Webster.

Blast from the past for Cabourn?

Readers with long memories may remember a Liverpool-based workwear company called Lybro. At a party to celebrate the opening of Nigel Cabourn’s splendid menswear shop in Henrietta Street, Covent Garden, Drapers’ Eric Musgrave was delighted to learn from the heritage-inspired designer that he owns the rights to the historic brand. It may yet be revived.

Extreme makeover for The North Face store

Talk turned to extreme sports at the launch of outdoor brand The North Face’s refitted Covent Garden store. Present were Arne Arens, general manager EMEA; Rob Brigham, managing director of Ellis Brigham (a retail partner); Gary Bishop, store manager, and Richard Shepherd, Ellis Brigham purchasing director.

Drapers & Co advise The Apprentice hopefuls

Episode two of BBC’s The Apprentice last week saw the women’s team turn up at the Emap office to pitch an idea for a wearable tech garment. Drapers’ Eric Musgrave joined Emap colleagues who shot the poor loves down on most counts. We doubt Lord Sugar will be putting this year’s £250,000 investment in a coat with plastic solar panels sewn on the shoulders. The slot was shot in the summer; the TV crew was with us for an hour for our 40 seconds on screen.

A Feather in their caps

Peter, Jean, Robert and Suzanne Burstein - three generations of the family - last week celebrated the 40th anniversary of running the Feathers boutique at 42 Hans Crescent next to Harrods last week. Jean and her husband Willie started the business in 1968. Congratulations to the busy Bursteins!

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