Call it wartime spirit or camaraderie in the face of a shared crisis, in times of change, upheaval and disaster, it’s natural to crave community. We’ve all felt it over the past few months – the need to make connections with new friends and deepen our bonds with family. A desire made even more poignant by the fact we could only see them online.
It is this need for connection, alongside the unlikely creativity that can come from times of turmoil, that Turnbull & Asser taps into with its new AW20 collection. Inspired by Andy Warhol’s famous Polaroid series, in which the artist captured candid portraits of famous friends from Dolly Parton and Yves Saint Laurent to David Hockney and William S. Burroughs, the Jermyn Street shirtmaker has called upon old friends, artistic acquaintances and new creative discoveries to offer a fresh perspective on the storied brand.
First to take up the tailoring mantle is artist Stephen Jaques. Introduced to Turnbull & Asser through stylist David Nolan, Jaques has been creating boldly coloured works inspired by the abstract painters of the ‘40s and ‘50s from his London studio for 24 years – and is well known for his love of a neckerchief. The perfect partner, then, for Turnbull & Asser’s range of silk accessories created at its Sidcup factory. Taking a printed pocket square and styling it as a neckerchief, it’s the perfect foil to the brand’s classic Holiday Fit cotton and cashmere shirt or raglan sleeve Merino crewneck jumper.
Another fan of a printed silk scarf is fellow London-based artist Andrew Pierre Hart. Having worked in music for much of his career, Hart’s work explores the relationship between sound and painting and he is particularly well known for his striking Secret Blueberry series. Created entirely in shades of blue, it provides the perfect backdrop for Turnbull & Asser’s smart-casual Japanese Selvedge jeans, dry-waxed cotton field jacket and contrasting Merino V-neck jumper. Layer with Turnbull & Asser’s Officer Weekend Fit shirt, handmade in its Gloucester factory, for the ultimate flexible autumn look.
For something more formal, Turnbull & Asser has called on mixed-medium artist Richard McVetis. Discovered by the brand through Cockpit Arts, McVetis’ work explores time through intricately stitched dots, lines and crosses – the parallels with Turnbull & Asser’s tailoring expertise are self-evident. As an appreciator – and executor – of highly labour intensive pieces, McVetis’ choice of Houndstooth flannel jacket, flannel trousers and green cashmere jumper, offset with one of Turnbull & Asser’s vast range of paisley and striped ties, is a match made in heaven.
Other highlights from the collection include a chunky corduroy suit in a retro olive hue, luxurious Sea Island cotton shirts and Corgi knits, in both vest and sweater formats, given a modern twist by musical up-and-comers Tom and Jonny Foster of Carlisle-based band Hardwicke Circus. And when it comes to downtime, if even the super-soft cotton-cashmere revere collar shirt feels too formal, there’s no loungewear more luxurious than Turnbull & Asser’s cotton pyjamas. Smart enough to wear day or night, pair with the brand’s classic gowns and Egyptian cotton socks for the cosiest of winter evening outfits – just don’t be surprised if the woman in your life follows in the footsteps of photographer Kasia Wozniak and ‘adopts’ them into her wardrobe…
Turnbull & Asser AW20