Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Summer in the City

Seasonal workwear from Hawes and Curtis

Its hot. Very hot, and very sticky. There is a definite temptation to throw on a cotton day dress and sandals everyday, but when I go to work - sometimes - I like to feel that I'm not wearing all my best vintage, and that I also like to try and keep my wardrobe office appropriate.

I am delighted to show you blouses from Hawes and Curtis, who have been making shirts here in Britain since 1913. A short read of their website and I discovered that they have a proud history - Queen Elizabeth's Auxiliary Territorial Service uniform during World War II bore their name

Left: The future Queen changing a truck tyre as Junior Commander Mildred looks on. Right: Princess Elizabeth in full Auxiliary Territorial Service uniform posing next to an Austin K2 Ambulance. 

Left: Princess Elizabeth’s Auxiliary Territorial Service battledress uniform on display at Kensington Palace. Right: An Auxiliary Territorial Service name-tagged shirt worn by Princess Elizabeth during the Second World War. 

The infamously stylish Duke of Windsor picked Hawes and Curtis as his shirtmaker of choice, and they designed the spread collar for the Windsor knotted tie, so-called because he invented it (you learn something knew everyday!). He was a proud supporter of British clothing, as am I, and have tried to demonstrate in the past with the selection of brands I have chosen to promote and support.

The Duke of Windsor exiting Hawes & Curtis' first shop in London's Burlington Arcade.

The day of the Duke of Windsor’s marriage to Wallis Simpson June 3, 1937 at Chateau de Candé, near Tours. He is wearing a Hawes & Curtis blue and white pinstriped shirt with white collar. And the morning coat and trousers worn by the Duke of Windsor together with a Hawes & Curtis blue and white pinstriped shirt.

Wearing a well made shirt is not surprisingly, a very nice experience. 90% of my wardrobe is vintage, but it is a lovely change to put something on that is new, and well made and has the benefit of having a little bit of vintage style. I even managed to find a vintage 50s bracelet and earrings to match in my collection!

Please excuse my hair, which was ruined by the hot and humid tube journey home!

1950s Shoes - Vintage - eBay - £13.00
Bracelet and Earrings - Vintage - eBay
Handbag - Vintage - Etsy

Historic photos and descriptions from the Hawes and Curtis Blog


  1. Pretty print on the shirt. I enjoyed reading about the company's history, I didn't know any of that.

  2. I love this look! I think it's perfect for summer.

  3. I love your pants - I am planning to get some vintage style trousers for work ready for the winter