A search for the best British materials available to today’s craftsman can take you from one end of the country to the other in pursuit of the quintessentially British product. To get an idea of the craftsman’s guide to Britain, we took a trip with Stephen Reeds, the founder of proudly British men and womenswear brand, Teddy Edward.
The brand is named after Stephen’s grandfather and hero, Teddy Edward. Described by Stephen as “a fine gentleman”, Teddy served as the inspiration for the brand, priding itself on the values of British quality and craftsmanship.
Seeking to embody a very British way of life, Teddy Edward follows the old adage of “simple but effective” – the brand’s bold, ‘less is more’ approach to their designs speaks volumes of Stephen’s love of the British countryside. All questionable weather habits aside, it’s undeniable that Britain offers some of the most stunning, picturesque landscapes. From the highest points, Britain can look simply astonishing. But when one delves into the towns and cities across the country, many a day can be spent carelessly roaming the cobbled streets, feeling the history with each footstep, something Stephen seeks to replicate within Teddy Edward.
As always, the journey begins at home, in Stephen’s native village of Wysall, in the picturesque county of Nottinghamshire, a place drenched in British history, if the tales of heroic outlaw Robin Hood are to be believed. 11 miles north of here is the city of Nottingham, a place renowned for its craftsmen and women’s keen attention to detail, with a history of beautifully intricate laces. This attention to detail drew the seasoned eye of Stephen Reeds, and as a result, the buttons binding Teddy Edwards’ garments in the colder weather were sourced from here.
To the south west lies the city of Leicester, home of the remains of King Richard III and Walkers Crisps. Additionally, Leicester is recognised within sartorial circles across the country for its contributions to hosiery and knitwear. With this expertise in mind, Teddy Edward utilise the craftspeople of Leicester in the production of their luxury jerseys, heavyweight cotton fabrics and socks, including the Brocklesby range featured last month (See: Teddy Edward -A Festive Favourite, The Brocklesby Sock).
To the west lies Birmingham, a city considered the country’s second capital, known for its extravagant architecture, the Balti curry and the music of Black Sabbath. A city radiating in culture, the world’s oldest fragments of the Qu’ran were discovered beneath the University of Birmingham in 2015. Taking this big city buzz and blending it effortlessly with Stephen’s country roots, Teddy Edward jackets are manufactured in Birmingham.
Moving south, we arrive at the coastal county of Suffolk on the east coast, an area famed for its horse racing heritage, and the home of Britain’s smallest pub. From its seaside location, given British weather it’s understandable the craftspeople of Suffolk have become adept at fighting the cold. Laid upon these foundations, Teddy Edward source their coats from here. Moving inward away from the windswept coast, we arrive in Buckinghamshire, home to the infamous Pinewood Studios, and half of the iconic racing track, the Silverstone Circuit. From here, Stephen’s 25 years in the fashion industry led him to discover the county’s reputation for its luxury jerseys, utilising its craftsmen’s expertise to create the Teddy Edward jersey range.
Returning home to The Foxley Docket’s doorstep in the Red Rose county of Lancashire, Stephen sources Teddy Edward’s beautifully soft and undeniably luxurious fabrics but waterproof in the creation of all Teddy Edward Jackets and coats, with the northern county well known for its cotton trade, dating back centuries.
Each piece created by Teddy Edward tells a story of their home’s roots, dug deep into the history of Great Britain. Arguably the best craftsmen and women the world has to offer, each product is lovingly crafted by hand, for that all important personal touch.
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