Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tommy Nutter

A charming exhibition at the Fashion & Textile Museum brings the inspirational work of fashion designer Tommy Nutter to a new generation.

This exhibition lifts the lid on a pivotal period in London's fashion history, taking a fascinating look at the movers and shakers of the 1960s and 70s, when a new dandy appeared on the streets - colourful and extrovert.
Since its opening on Valentine's Day in 1969, Tommy Nutter's shop on Savile Row epitomised the new look.
Nutter took suits and twisted them to suit his ideal aesthetic. His early shapes, featuring slightly longer jackets with high, tight arms and full bag-style trousers were actually inspired by the style of 1930s silver-screen idols.

Trademarks included wide, notched lapels trimmed in satin or grosgrain, sharp shoulders and patch pockets in an alternate fabric. Nutter also enjoyed using contrasting fabrics, as well as the freedom of the same fabric in different colourways.
With close ties to the entertainment industry (one of Nutter's business backers Peter Brown worked with the Beatles), his beautifully tailored suits for men and women were worn by rock stars, actors and fashionable people. The Rolling Stones, Bianca Jagger, Twiggy and Elton John were all clients.

Nutter later worked as a costume designer and designed a ready-to-wear collection for Fortnum & Mason. The tailor employed young talents John Galliano and Timothy Everest to work alongside him.

Without a doubt, the Nutter style has influenced the aesthetic of major designers such as Tom Ford and Vivienne Westwood, as well as a younger generation of tailors.

Nutter's former protégé
Timothy Everest – described as a quintessential British tailor with an eccentric style and a modern attitude - carries on his spirit in his atelier in East London's Spitalfields today.

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