By Diane Small
British retailer John Lewis was always ahead of the competition in terms of ethics: they have always operated as a Partnership with their employees, with the goal of securing the happiness of all its members through worthwhile and satisfying employment in a successful business. Because the Partnership is owned in trust for its members, each employee shares the responsibilities of ownership in John Lewis, as well as its rewards: profit, knowledge and empowerment.
The department store is also launching a sustainable collection September 8th called ‘Modern Rarity’. It features impeccably crafted, limited edition organic cotton shirts created with Central St Martins trained Levi Palmer and Matthew Harding; beautiful Italian cashmere coats and sweaters, made by a manufacturer in Tuscany which creates its own yarns, and slouchy wool jumpers and trousers.
Modern Rarity is aimed at a fashion-forward, conscious consumer who’s sick of the throwaway nature of the high street and wants to invest in cool, classic pieces that will last longer than just one season. Jo Bennett, Head of Womenswear for the shop, said: “We set off with a mantra of ‘fewer, better pieces’, with the knowledge that our customers are wanting quality pieces that have design substance.”
Indeed, Modern Rarity is all about longevity, and the debut AW16 collection, which will land on September 8, is comprised of 90 items which all are designed to look, and feel, luxurious. It’s designed to be a winter capsule collection that will last for years, with infinite outfit combinations thanks to silhouettes made for layering and a muted colour palette of soft, earthy tones.
“The customer dynamic has shifted in recent years,” explains buying fashion director for John Lewis, Ed Connolly. “The trend for fast fashion is fading, and today’s customers desire beautiful design and great quality pieces that transcend seasons.”
With a decent price point for clothing of this quality (a cashmere coat is £550 and most of the pieces are around £100), Modern Rarity is expected to sell out soon. It offers a great alternative to those who love the chic, casual designs of Celine or Max Mara, but can’t afford the price tag.
The collection is available online from today and delivers internationally. For more information, please click here.