This year, John Smedley celebrates 225 years as specialists in fine, lightweight knitwear. The heritage brand was there at the birth of the industrial revolution, back when the first factories and looms were being built. The company has since come a long way and continues to innovate and evolve, and today is known as one of the world’s leading luxury knitwear specialists.
Founded in 1784 as a spinning mill, it wasn’t until 1825 when the second John Smedley took the reigns and set out a new vision for the company, where spinning, knitting and manufacturing takes place under one roof using only the finest raw materials. In 1893 John Smedley became a limited company and developed a production line capable of manufacturing fine gauge, fully fashioned underwear and outerwear. The company’s iconic Sea Island Cotton products came in 1922 and were first used to knit John Smedley underwear, unique for its fineness, luxurious staple length and high tensile strength.
Celebrating its 225 years, the company has launched the 225 Fine Underwear range. These pieces are made in England from pure natural fibres with the craft and skill of generations. You can also preview John Smedley’s Autumn Winter 2009 collection on its new anniversary website. The menswear collection combines signature styles and new pieces and revolves around three personalities that epitomise the spirit of John Smedley: Owl, Raven and Peacock. Each character is different, but all share a passion for luxury and design. The womenswear collection is based on reflection, back to the 1920s when notions of appropriate dress were being challenged. Loose, unusual shapes, layered with tapered classics create distinctive silhouettes.
Fans of the brand can share their Smedley stories by uploading these online on their anniversary website at www.johnsmedley225.com for a chance to win £225 worth of online vouchers.