Sunday 30 July 2023

Monday, March 14, 2022 / Remembering the closure of Sundog in Edgartown, Martha’s Vineyard.


Sundog, Main Street Anchor, Closes Its Doors

Aidan Pollard

Monday, March 14, 2022 - 7:08pm


A downtown Edgartown staple for nearly half a century, the menswear store Sundog has closed. But the shop’s wares won’t go down with its storefront, thanks to a donation of the entire inventory to a nonprofit startup thrift store in Vineyard Haven.


Originating in Cambridge in 1970, Sundog moved to Martha’s Vineyard in 1976 and operated at 41 Main Street for 36 years, owner Frank Folts told the Gazette by phone Monday.


The business hopped around Edgartown in its first years on the Island, existing at times where familiar businesses such as the Wharf Pub and Black Dog are now located, before settling at 41 Main Street. For most of Mr. Folts’s time there, the building was owned by Larry Levine, an Island businessman.


“The best landlord I ever had,” Mr. Folts said.


Despite problems with the building that occasionally interrupted business, Mr. Folts said Mr. Levine was a good friend to him and to Sundog.


Mr. Levine died in 2018 and his daughter Sarah Levine inherited the building. This year Mr. Folts said he learned that he had lost his decades-long lease at the property, forcing him to close the business.


“We’ve pondered what to do,” he said. “This has been my life.”


With a background in advertising, Mr. Folts ran a series of eye-catching ads in the Gazette over the years, including the well-known Sundog countdown to spring that began every winter.


He spoke about the changing nature of Main street over time, with the arrival of more franchised stores and fewer sole proprietor establishments.


“The commercialization of the Island has been rather intense,” Mr. Folts said, adding that he was unsure whether there was still time to reverse the trend.


“I think it’s unfortunate what has happened,” he said.


Mr. Folts had famously resisted holding sales at Sundog for years.


But in a letter sent to the Gazette, he wrote that the business had planned to belatedly commemorate Sundog’s 50th anniversary with a sale. First the sale was delayed in 2020 and 2021 by the pandemic. Then came the lost lease, he wrote.


In the wake of the Sundog closure, Mr. Folts has donated all the store’s inventory — including its familiar decorations and window dressings — to Act Two Secondhand Store, a startup nonprofit thrift shop on Main street Vineyard Haven.


The donation is a tribute to the late Vineyard scrimshaw artists Don MacDonald and Tom DeMont, Mr. Folts wrote, adding that he hoped it would help the Island and also jump start Act Two’s mission to benefit arts and education on the Island. Founded by Alissa Keenan and Kevin Ryan, the store was doing a brisk business Monday afternoon. In his letter Mr. Folts said it will satisfy a need once met by the Boys and Girls Club Second Hand Store, previously located in Edgartown.


“It was a substantial monetary gift for all intents and purposes,” he told the Gazette, speaking about the donation.


But he said Sundog’s story may not end here.


“I’m still considering relocating,” he said. Describing himself as a patient man, he said he will wait to see which way the wind blows.


“It takes a lot of energy,” he said, speaking about owning a business. “I am 88 years old — and full of fire and vinegar, of course.”

Friday 28 July 2023

A Closer Look: Jackie Kennedy’s Martha’s Vineyard Home - Red Gate Farm |

Red Gate Farm: Jackie Kennedy Onassis’ Summer House


Jacqueline Kennedy had an extensive history with residences, including one of the most famous houses in the land, but it was Red Gate Farm that she chose to live out the final years of her life in the beautiful Martha’s Vineyard landscapes at the water’s edge. After forty years Jackie Kennedy Onassis’ Summer House was finally placed on the market in 2019 by her and JFK’s daughter, Caroline. The estate has since sold with ambitious plans ahead, here is a peek around and a look at what’s next for the estate:


Listed by Christie’s Real Estate in 2019 for $65 million, Red Gate Farm is located at the tip of Martha’s Vineyard on the Aquinnah waterfront. Originally a landholding for sheep and with only one small hunting cabin, the 350 acre estate was bought by Jackie Kennedy Onassis in 1979. Long-time friend and landscaping maestro, Rachel “Bunny” Mellon was enlisted to design the gardens and landscapes, while architect Hugh Newell Jacobson was taken with created a holiday home suitable for Jackie, her two children, and the numerous close friends who would visit over the years. Designed in true Cape Cod style, the two-storey main house is constructed with cedar-shingle cladding and contrasting windows, all completed in 1981.


The main house comprises of a formal sitting room with fireplace, a drawing room, family room, library, dining room and chef’s kitchen form the ground floor, along with a den, 2 offices/art studios, 2 powder rooms and a laundry room, while upstairs comprises of four large en-suite bedrooms with the master including a dressing room. The fifth bedroom is located on the ground floor, which also acts as a study. There is also a guest house featuring 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a living room, kitchen and laundry room. The listing notes:


Red Gate Farm boasts over a mile of private Atlantic Ocean beachfront with dunes, and two freshwater ponds, as well as a vegetable garden and blueberry patch, an outdoor pool, tennis court, and a fairy treehouse, which Ms. Onassis built for her grandchildren. Overlooking Squibnocket Pond is the original hunting cabin. The ancillary structures include a three-bedroom caretaker’s house, a barn, two garages (one with a two-bedroom apartment), a temperature-controlled storage building, and a boathouse.


It was later reported that part of the estate had sold, off market, for $27 million – a drop of $38 million. The buyers were The Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank Commission and the Sheriff’s Meadow Foundation, a pair of non-profit organisations who plan to open stretches of the estate’s natural habitats to the public, with the land designated for conservation. The Kennedy family chose to keep 95 acres of the property, which include the homes, while the non-profits purchased the existing 304 acres, which will be paid off in instalments over the course of four years. The stretch of nature will be known as the Squibnocket Pond Reservation and will be open to the public to enjoy the Atlantic-fronted beaches, dunes, ponds, trails and meadows.


In a press release, the Sheriff’s Meadow Foundation, the Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank Commission, and Red Gate Farm LLC announced their agreement to ‘conserve one of the most important and ecologically diverse habitats in New England’. “Our family has endeavored to be worthy stewards of this magnificent and fragile natural habitat, and its sites of cultural significance,” explained Caroline Kennedy. “We are excited to partner with two outstanding island organizations, and for the entire island community and the general public to experience its beauty. We look forward to many more happy years in Aquinnah.”


Thursday 27 July 2023

Old as Adam, 33 Ceres Street , Portsmouth, New Hampshire


Old as Adam

33 Ceres Street

Portsmouth, New Hampshire

(603) 661-9373

Living the Dream: Adam Irish from Old As Adam



As some of you may know, I have a small obsession with the picturesque seaside town of Portsmouth, NH. With its amazing restaurants, coffee shops, and independent bookstores paired with some fantastic colonial history and real estate – it’s kind of a dream. There is also a nice little cluster of antique shops in the surrounding area to explore. I took a day trip up to Portsmouth a couple weeks ago, and stumbled upon a newer antique vender, Old as Adam run by Adam Irish, right in downtown Portsmouth on Ceres Street. I was immediately impressed by his aesthetic, as well as his collection of unusual finds. What’s more, he’s a young proprietor in a stereotypically graying industry.


We were so impressed that we asked Adam to share a bit about himself, his business and his passion for antiques.


Adam Irish; age 27

Proprietor of Old as Adam


I’ve been collecting since I was a kid. Bottle digging especially captured my imagination as a boy; I found some amazing things digging on old farms and estates. For better or for worse, I am almost entirely self taught and have hardly studied antiques in any formal sense. My knowledge came from years hitting the yard sales and antique shops every weekend, countless hours watching the hammer fall at auctions, and many, many mistakes. My advice to someone interested in antiques or the antique business is just do it. Unless you have a specific interest (say eighteenth century American silver or turn-of-the-century art pottery), books are of little use. Get up early for the flea market and stay late at the auction. Don’t be intimidated. Buy what you like. Once you refine your tastes, study away (I’m currently enmeshed in a tome about the evolution of 20th century clothing labels).


How would you describe your store, your aesthetic and your target client?


I describe my store as a “Vintage Haberdasher & Cabinet of Curiosities.” I’ve always loved the aesthetics of turn-of-the-century shops and the elaborate signage that often festooned their storefronts. The sadly antiquated term “haberdasher” also conjures the 19th century, and so I decided to make my shop in the spirit of that era.


Old as Adam specializes in vintage menswear, from top hats to overalls. I try to be fastidious about keeping my stock true vintage, and have pieces dating from the 1960s back to the 18th century. Dapper is the word (although I stock the humblest vintage workwear as well). Suits, ties, vests, hats – I try to revive the great sartorial traditions of yesterday one sale at a time.


In the store, I favor late Victorian and early 20th century pieces, of both high and low origins (for example, you’ll currently find both a fine 19th century Parian bust and a caged 1920s utility light in stock). I also have a penchant for the quirky and strange, things that delight or dumbfound (in the past pieces of this nature have included 1920s clown shoes and a Victorian child’s coffin fashioned into a bookcase). I also favor fun and funky mid-20th century miscellany, but I haven’t found that these things fit comfortably in the store.


Who is my target client? That’s hard to say. I am always surprised at the variety of folks who appreciate what I’m trying to do. The one thing they all have in common is that they appreciate the past. They marvel at the quality of old things. They wonder at the stories, the history, the people these objects can embody. They share my joy in discovering something wonderful. That’s all you need to enjoy and collect antiques.


How did you start with your business?


I began selling when I was 8 years old and since then, I’ve always nominally been in the business (it supported me through college). Transitioning to full-time was something else, however. I became much more serious about online sales, but did most of my business while renting a space in an antique coop as well as selling to other dealers and at shows. I still do all of these things in addition to running the shop.


What do you love most about running Old as Adam?


I love it because it’s not work. It’s fun. I’d be doing all these things if I had different job. Since this is my full-time gig, however, I get to do even more. Sure, there are times when it’s painful to sit through a ten-hour auction, but most of the time I’m having a ball (even when getting on the road at 3am for the flea market).


What are some of your recent picks?


I love this pair of toy airships. I found them independently, but they look great together.


I recently acquired this marvelous Victorian coffee grinder. It originally would have held a place of honor in a general store.


Last week I came upon a large collection of antique clockfaces belonging to clock tinkerer. I find their weathered faces and fragmentary nature beautiful. In fact, I have a large iron clock face on the door to the shop. For me, it symbolizes the timeless nature of old good things and the illusory, consumption-driven idea that the passage of time leaves in its wake only the outmoded and undesirable.


What is your dream find, a specific item or elements of a favorite collection?


My dream find is discovering an old family menswear shop that was shuttered, say, in the 1960s. I know one is out there. I came close a few weeks ago, but most of it had been thrown out.  In this case, they still have a 1950s “Adam Hats” neon sign which I feel I am obligated to acquire.


In reality, however, I have no idea what my dream find is. I will come upon it one day at the bottom of a dusty trunk or in some ramshackle barn. Discovery makes this profession a constant pleasure. You never know what you’ll find next.


Most importantly, how can our readers find you and your shop?


Old as Adam

33 Ceres Street

Portsmouth, New Hampshire

(603) 661-9373

Tuesday 25 July 2023

George Cleverley Shoes


George Cleverley was born on the 10th of August 1898 into a shoemaking family in London. George moved to Colchester in Essex with his parents when he was 2 and spent his childhood selling bootlaces and polish. After finishing his apprenticeship at 15, he was called up to the Royal British Army for World War I and was then stationed in London before joining a British  army boot factory in Calais, France. After the war he joined Tuczec, a high society London shoemaker on Clifford Street, Mayfair where he remained for 38 years. George left Tuczec in 1958 to start his own business - G.J.Cleverley of Cork Street, Mayfair, London.


After establishing G.J. Cleverley in London’s Mayfair not far from where the office currently sits today, George served some of the world’s most illustrious names spanning world leaders, industry titans and social figures and quickly became known for making the Cleverley shape – a graceful, chisel-toed shoe which became signature to his extraordinary craft. George died in 1991 at nearly 93 years of age and was still working, virtually, until he died.



In 1978, George Cleverley chose longtime pupils John Carnera and George Glasgow to succeed him in the business given their shared high principles of shoemaking, Between them, George and John have a shared experience of over 100 years in the Bespoke shoemaking world.


Today, the company is still a family business led by Mr. George Glasgow Snr (Chairman) & Mr. George Glasgow Jr (CEO & Creative Director). Mr. Glasgow Snr worked with Mr. Cleverley for over 20 years and is based in Mayfair with over 45 years of experience in shoemaking. Mr. George Glasgow Jr splits his time between Los Angeles & London and has been working alongside George Snr for over 20 years.

Sunday 23 July 2023

Locals fear the Scottish village of Kenmore is becoming a 'playground' for American billionaires / 'It is literally a ghost town'

'It is literally a ghost town': Locals fear Scottish village is becoming a 'playground' for American billionaires


Kenmore sits on the banks of the River Tay and is home to around 100 residents. Arizona-based Investors Discovery Land Company has snapped up a lot of real estate in the region, which is causing concerns among the locals the area is becoming "hoarded by the elite".


Connor Gillies

Scotland correspondent @ConnorGillies

Saturday 22 July 2023 15:54, UK


There are fears a peaceful Perthshire village is becoming a "ghost town" for locals who claim American billionaires are taking over to create a "playground" for the super-rich.


Kenmore sits on the banks of the stunning River Tay and is home to about 100 residents.


Neighbouring Taymouth Castle, built in 1842, and its vast swaths of land have been bought up by an Arizona-based business which boasts of transforming the area into a plush resort for the mega-wealthy.


Investors Discovery Land Company (DLC) - which claims to be one of the most exclusive residential real estate development companies in the world - has also snapped up and subsequently closed the local hotel and post office.


The foreign business empire has also bought several homes as concerns mount that the area is becoming "hoarded by the elite".


It has been reported DLC's clients include billionaires, CEOs, presidents and celebrities.


A recent sales brochure from the US firm suggested the plans would include "a community including 208 residential units and club suites" and is only "30 minutes by helicopter" to Scotland's major cities.


The castle restoration project was given planning permission by Perth and Kinross Council in 2011.


Locals suggest their surroundings are being strangled and have mounted a petition to "fight back".


Campaigner Rob Jamieson told Sky News: "In their other developments their homes range from £3m to £50m. They are going to try and close this all off. They don't want the great unwashed walking past their high-end homes.


"None of us will ever set foot in it unless we want to tug a forelock. It is everything that a rich person could ever want but they never have to leave the confines of that estate. They are not going to be going out for tea and scones to the local tearoom.


"It is abhorrence to those of us who live around here."



DLC rejected numerous Sky News interview requests but insisted all regulations were being followed, including Scottish legislation giving the public the right to roam on paths surrounding the historic castle.


A spokeswoman did not deny suggestions the area will become a gated community.


The company website states the golf course and amenities will be "reserved" for the owners.

Saturday 22 July 2023

Is This the End of the Red Carpet?



Is This the End of the Red Carpet?


The actor’s strike could have far-reaching implications for how we watch and consume fashion.


Vanessa Friedman

By Vanessa Friedman

July 20, 2023


At first it seemed impossible to imagine: No more red carpets! No more photos of movie stars and names to watch in fabulous gowns blanketing the internet. Could “Oppenheimer” and “Barbie” be the last gasp of that marketing Valhalla of fashion and film that was the modern premiere — at least for the foreseeable future?


At least, that is, until the SAG-AFTRA actor’s strike, announced July 14, is resolved. For the moment, actors, from the unknown to the most celebrated, are banned by their union from engaging in any promotional activities. That means big openings. That means magazine covers touting new movies. That means film festivals with all their associated dressing and posing opportunities. That means social media pics of them getting dressed for premieres.


And what that means for fashion, an industry that has become increasingly intertwined with the denizens of Lalaland in a mutually beneficial ecosystem of influence and outfits — and as important, what it means for the public’s understanding of fashion, much of which is received through the lens of celebrity — is potentially enormous.


Actors sign contracts that can be worth millions, negotiated by agents and managers, to be brand ambassadors, appearing in some combination of advertisements, front rows, store openings and red carpets, dressed by stylists, generating coverage, desire and, most of all, publicity for everyone involved.



Their work may form their substance, but fashion is the grease that sends them viral (and that has bolstered their bank accounts at a time when the economics of movies are shifting — part of the reason for the strike). Timothée Chalamet on the red carpet in Venice in a crimson Haider Ackermann halter top and Florence Pugh in a sheer pink Valentino “revenge dress” are images that put those actors and those brands at the center of social media for days.


Alison Bringé, the chief marketing officer at Launchmetrics, a data analytics and software company, wrote in an email that Margot Robbie’s appearance in Schiaparelli at the film’s Los Angeles premiere “generated over $2.1 million in media impact value in just 24 hours, which is more than half of what Schiaparelli’s fall 2023 show amassed overall.”


With all of that grinding to a halt, along with studio productions themselves, what happens? And who are most at risk? Actors and studios are not the only ones with a stake in this game.


At the moment, agents and talent seem to be holding their breath and swiveling their heads to see what everyone else is doing. The brands themselves are staying mum. Louis Vuitton, whose ambassadors include Jennifer Connelly, Michelle Williams and Ana de Armas, declined to comment. Versace, which works with Anne Hathaway, ditto. Prada, ditto. Gucci, ditto. Dior did not respond to requests for comment.


In theory, all fashion promotional work (as opposed to movie promotional work) can continue. Commercial appearances are not prohibited, according to the strike guidelines. And there are myriad such opportunities that have nothing to do with premieres. Recently Wimbledon turned into a catwalk of sorts for celebrities including Emma Corrin and Brad Pitt.


Much has been made of the fact that the first big red carpet victim will be the Venice Film Festival, scheduled for Aug. 30 to Sept. 9, and the de facto start of awards season, with all the fashion fanfare that implies.


This year the films rumored to be showing star Zendaya, a Louis Vuitton ambassador (Luca Guadagnino’s “Challengers”); Jessica Chastain, who works with Gucci (Michael Franco’s “Memory”); Emma Stone, also a Louis Vuitton ambassador (Yorgos Lanthimos’s “Poor Things”); and Penélope Cruz, who works with Chanel (Michael Mann’s “Ferrari”). All of them will most likely be absent.


Yet, as it happens, early September is also New York Fashion Week, and the start of the whole fashion season. That’s four weeks of potential for appearances and events.


Even more pointedly, brands themselves have increasingly tiptoed into the content arena, making short films, especially during the pandemic. What sorts of non-studio videos could they cook up? Entirely independent films are allowed under strike guidelines. YSL even has its own film production division. The studios would look selfless — supporting talent — and the talent would look, well, good. When given lemons. …


Indeed, the strike may make brand relationships even more important, both as a source of income and as a creative outlet. “The first writers strike, our teams were busier than ever, because a lot of the actors had to do more promotional appearances to subsidize for any slowing in their main vocation,” said Brooke Wall, the founder of the Wall Group, a talent agency for stylists that is part of the Endeavor group.


That’s one way of looking at it. The issue is thornier, however, because of the morality and optics involved. Even if SAG-AFTRA members are allowed by the rules to continue their outside work, will it not seem gauche to do so? Given the glitz and champagne associated with fashion, it could seem a bit like partying while Rome burns.


Fran Drescher, the SAG-AFTRA president and face of the strike, received vociferous blowback when she attended the Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda couture extravaganza/junket in Puglia, Italy, just before the strike was announced, even though a spokeswoman for the union told The Hollywood Reporter that it knew about the trip, and it was fine. Add in the fact that it is often the most boldface names in the industry who have snagged the biggest outside contracts — exactly that layer of Hollywood that does not necessarily need work during a stoppage — and the situation gets even more complicated.


On the other hand, there is a whole substratum of talent who are not at the negotiating table and yet are seriously affected by the red carpet suspension: the stylists and hair and makeup artists who help create the image-making magic, and whose salaries are generally paid for by the studios, not the talent.


“There is no work!” said Kate Young, a stylist whose work focuses on Hollywood.


The end of movie promotion is a “massive issue,” according to the stylist Karla Welch, who said she had had four premiere tours cut short or canceled already. “Basically any stylist who works with celebs just saw all their jobs go away,” she said. “The only thing celebs’ people can do are fashion jobs, and that’s the few people who have celebs with brand deals.”


This may be partly why there has been little noise thus far about suspending brand appearances. There is a trickle-down effect at work that is not insignificant when it comes to people’s livelihoods. Still, Ms. Wall said, “this is a whole new world, so we shall see.”


Indeed, there is a scenario in which the suspension of the red carpet has the unintended but far-reaching consequence of decoupling fashion and Hollywood, or at least significantly changing the balance of power. It could prove to brands that they need celluloid celebrities less than they may think, ushering in a new era of ambassadors focused on the rest of the world and talent that has nothing to do with back lots or Oscar statuettes. Really, it has already begun.


Two names: BTS and Beyoncé.


Vanessa Friedman has been the fashion director and chief fashion critic for The Times since 2014. In this role she covers global fashion for both The New York Times and International New York Times. More about Vanessa Friedman

Thursday 20 July 2023

Royal Toppers

Christy's Hats, LONDON / VIDEO: How to Measure Your Head for a Hat | Christys' London(Christys Hats)

Miller Christy is born at Ormiston Lodge, Haddington, Scotland.

Miller Christy commences his apprenticeship in the ‘Art and Mystery of Felt Making’ in Edinburgh.

Miller Christy travels south to employ his hat making skills and on March 1st 1773, in partnership with fellow Quaker Joseph Storrs, they set up a hat manufacturers in Whitehart Court, London.

Following the retirement of Joseph Storrs, Miller Christy's two sons - Thomas and William - join the firm.

John Heatherington, a London haberdasher, is apprehended for causing a disturbance of the peace. He was one of the first men to wear a top hat.

William Christy and three partners buy Underbank Hall and open The Stockport and East Cheshire Bank - now part of the National Westminster Bank. The Stockport felt and hat making works are taken over by the Christy family


Christys' wins one of the first tenders for supplying hats to the newly formed (1929) Metropolitan Police


The Bowler hat is invented by Lock & Co and The Bowler Brothers. Christys, from its factory in Bermondsey, London, becomes one of the largest manufacturers of this iconic British styles.

Prince Albert wears a Christys' Top Hat - and popularises the style as an every-day essential for the British gentleman.

The Christy establish a hat store at No. 1 Old Bond Street, at the corner of Piccadilly

The Trade Mark Registration Act enables Britain's first trade mark protection. Amongst the first registrations, on 1st March, is the Christys' London trade mark with Royal Garter. It has remained unchanged ever since

JB Stetson visits the Christys' Stockport factory and writes to enquire 'How Christys maintains such a productive workforce?. Stetson use Christys' design for the Ten Gallon hat - for which Christys received an on-going royalty.

The Trilby Hat acquired mass appeal following its use as a prop in the London dramatization of George du Maurier's novel - Trilby (the heroine of the play was called Trilby O'Farrell). It helped signal the gradual shift towards the more relaxed styles of dress of the Edwardian era after the strict dress codes of Victorian times. Christys’ makes its trilbies in the same way, to this day. Armed forces hats ranging from Police helmets and Naval Tricornes through to musician caps appeared alongside the Company’s everyday top hats and bowlers. The company were particularly proud of their association with the Dreadnought class of Destroyers in the Royal Navy. Christys employs over 3000 people in Stockport alone, making Christys the world’s largest hat manufacturer.


The snap brim felt hat is introduced and popularised by the Prince of Wales. The style can be worn not only with lounge suits but also with sports clothes, replacing the cap on the golf course.

Future sister company Compton Webb (J Compton Sons and Webb) establishes a military hat making factory in Witney Oxfordshire.

With the gradual decline in hat wearing, consolidation in the hat industry commences. Christys acquire the famous hat brands of Henry Heath, Tress & Co. and Lincoln Bennett.

With the popularisation of the scooter, the Compton Corker - a leather covered protective helmet - is the headgear of choice for both style and safety.

Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother visits the Stockport factory, having commissioned Christys to make miniature hats for Queen Elizabeth II’s dolls house many years earlier.

The store at No1 Old Bond Street - opened in 1851 as a Christys store and then renamed as Scotts - after the manager of the store - but still owned by the Christy family, is sold to Lock and Co. The Christy Beaufort range of riding and equestrian hats is launched to great acclaim. The Beaufort adorns many great riders and jockeys - including the 2000 Sydney Olympic GB equestrian team.

Christys closes its Stockport works and consolidates all operations in Witney Oxfordshire with sister company Compton Webb.


The new millennium blows fresh life into hat wearing as those at the forefront of fashion and music rediscover and reintegrate hats to the style world.

Famous Department store Liberty acquire Christy & Co and Compton Webb - and help to introduce the brand to a new wave of style conscious hat wearers, including collaborations with great British brands such as Paul Smith and Margaret Howell.

Christys celebrates 240 years since foundation - with a special edition fedora hat to be sold at Harrods department store.

Christys becomes an official supplier of Panama hats to the Lawn Tennis Association for the Wimbledon Championships

Christys is proud to become the official supplier of genuine Panama hats to retail giant Marks and Spencer

Christys signs an exclusive license to become the official headwear partner to Royal Ascot

To celebrate 245 years of hat making excellence, Christys launched a range of complementary accessories in collaboration with some of Britain’s most cherished heritage brands such as Conway Stewart, Deakin and Francis and Tustings.

Christys signs exclusive licensing deals to supply headwear and accessories to sporting icons Juventus, Paris Saint Germain and the Football Association.

Lock & Co. Hatters 6 St James's Street, London

The distinctive dome of the Coke, otherwise known as the bowler, has defined some of modern history's most unforgettable images since it was created by Lock & Co in 1849.
From Charlie Chaplin's slapsticking on the silent screen, to the outlaws and lawmen riding the Wild West, its unmistakable silhouette has made it as much of an icon as any of its wearers.

Lock Story

Although the Coke (pronounced "cook") is celebrated for its style now, its creation stems from something altogether more sensible: nobleman Edward Coke, younger brother of the 2nd Earl of Leicester, wanted a superior hat to that of the top hat which kept falling off his gamekeepers' heads on the Holkham Hall estate in Norfolk. Coke wanted to create a hat that was hardy enough to protect heads from low-hanging branches and poacher attacks so on 25th August 1849, he trod the boards of Lock to place an order.

A prototype was swiftly made by Lock's chief hatmaker, Thomas Bowler, hence how it received its other more recognisable moniker. On inspection, Edward Coke tossed the hat to the floor - and proceeded to jump on it to assess its durability. It duly passed this colourful test and the bill for 12 shillings was settled. To this day the Earl of Leicester continues to purchase the hat, to which his ancestor gave his name, for his gamekeepers after they have completed one year of service.

 But the Coke's popularity did not stop on these shores - British railroad workers in western America wore the wind-resistant hat as did Derby-goers and those wishing to rise through the social ranks. But the practical hats were quickly adopted by Wild West outlaws such as Butch Cassidy and Billy and the Kid, before Stetson introduced its 'Boss of the Plains' in 1865. In the 1920's, the Coke hat was even chosen as the official headdress for South American women of Aymara and Quechua, thanks to railroad workers taking them across the pond to Bolivia.

Today the Coke remains one of Lock's best-selling styles, both for suited and booted City-wearers and those who wish to treasure a piece of this story. From being worn by Patrick Macnee in the Avengers and John Cleese in Monty Python to being immortalised in art by Rene Magritte, the Coke is Lock's masterpiece.

 Lock Story

Lock & Co. Hatters (formally James Lock and Company Limited) is the world's oldest hat shop, the world's 34th oldest family-owned business and is a Royal warrant holder. Its shop is located at 6 St James's Street, London and is a Grade II* listed building.

The company was founded in 1676 by Robert Davis. His son Charles continued the business and took James Lock (1731–1806) on as an apprentice in 1747. James later married Charles Davis's only child, Mary. When Davis died in 1759, James Lock inherited the company from his former master, and the Lock family, James's descendants, still own and run the company today. The shop has been in its current location since 1765.

The company is responsible for the origination of the bowler hat. In 1849, Edward Coke, nephew of Thomas Coke, 1st Earl of Leicester and the younger brother of Thomas Coke, 2nd Earl of Leicester, requested a hat to solve the problem of gamekeepers' headgear. Traditional top hats were too fragile and too tall (often getting knocked off by low branches) for the job. The company commissioned London hat-makers William and Thomas Bowler to solve the problem. Anecdotally, when Coke returned for his new hat, he dropped it on the floor and stamped on it twice to test its strength before paying 12 shillings and leaving satisfied.

Admiral Lord Nelson wore a bicorne of the brand’s into the Battle of Trafalgar complete with eye-shade. The eternally rakish Beau Brummell procured its hats as part of his sartorial arsenal. Winston Churchill adopted their Cambridge and Homburg hats as sartorial signatures and Anthony Eden was never without his trusty Lock Homburg.

Notable customers include Admiral Lord Nelson, Oscar Wilde and Douglas Fairbanks Jr (who lived in a flat above the shop),[3] Laurence Olivier, Charlie Chaplin, Jackie Chan, Cecil Beaton, Michael Palin, Alec Guinness, Jeremy Irons, Donald Sinden, Marc Sinden, Jackie Onassis, Eric Clapton, Duke of Windsor, Gary Oldman, Pierce Brosnan, Jon Voight, Victor Borge, Peter O'Toole and David Beckham.

Lock & Co. is a Royal warrant holder as Hatter to Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and Charles, Prince of Wales.

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