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Off the Record, September 14 2013

People, gossip, parties…

Beaming Bespoke blokes

This month The Bowes Museum at Barnard Castle in County Durham opens an extensive exhibition of the work of Henry Poole, the venerable Savile Row tailor, displaying men’s and women’s outfits going back as far as the 1820s. It will run until next May. Neatly turned out for the London launch party were Margaret Howell managing director Richard Craig, a non-executive at Henry Poole & Co, flanked by director Simon Cundey and Angus Cundey, the firm’s chairman. The Cundey family has run Poole’s since 1876.

Pork pies pop up at Farrell

Robbie Williams’ menswear label Farrell opened its first standalone pop-up shop on London’s Earlham Street last week. Guests were treated to pork pies and gin cocktails alongside a very British fashion fare, although one member of the Drapers team in particular (Keely Stocker, pictured with the label’s creative director Ben Dickens) was disappointed not to see Mr Williams himself.

HoF’s Archive inspiration

House of Fraser chief executive John King and menswear director Jackie Hay hosted a press launch for the new Army & Navy menswear range in the very agreeable surroundings of wine merchants Berry Brothers & Rudd at St James’s Street, London. HoF used an original Army & Navy Stores catalogue as a source of inspiration for the performance outerwear range.

A Royal LCF fundraiser

Eminent fashion writer Colin McDowell, Kurt Geiger creative director Rebecca Farrar-Hockley and Kurt Geiger chief executive Neil Clifford were among the guests at a gala dinner organised to celebrate 125 years of Cordwainers, the footwear college, and to raise funds for the London College of Fashion. Kurt Geiger sponsored the evening, which raised £330,000. Harold Tillman, the appeal chairman, welcomed Sophie, Duchess of Wessex, to the event in the rather grand surroundings of Mansion House in the City of London. Other worthies in their glad rags included Jimmy Choo, Whistles’ Jane Shepherdson, John Egan of Dune and Achilleas Constantinou from Ariella.

Bright young things at selfridges

Selfridges’ creative director Alannah Weston hosted a small soirée at the department store’s Oxford Street branch to unveil its latest windows project, Bright Young Things. The collaboration with 15 up-and-coming names from the world of fashion, art and design includes menswear designer Alan Taylor. Each of the rising stars designed a window display, which will be on show until October 17.

Correction: Ian Webster

My humble apologies go to the family and friends of footwear agent Ian Webster, who I inexplicably renamed Ian Webb last week in my report on his funeral, which I attended. I was wrongly influenced by his many non-industry friends who referred to the big fella as Webbo The Shoe Man at the event in Carlisle. I like to think Ian would have been amused at this fiasco.

Eric Musgrave


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