Wednesday 28 September 2016

Designer Louise Kennedy gets shirty with new collaboration

Samantha McCaughren

Published 11/09/2016 | 02:30

A shirt by Louise Kennedy and Turnbull and Asser, with an Inez black crepe skirt
A shirt by Louise Kennedy and Turnbull and Asser, with an Inez black crepe skirt

Designer Louise Kennedy has launched a new collaboration with exclusive British shirtmaker Turnbull and Asser, whose shirts have been favoured by successive James Bonds.

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Kennedy revealed the new range of women's shirts at the launch of her autumn/winter collection last week.

There are four shirts in the initial collection, which Kennedy expects to expand over time.

It is the first time that Turnbull and Asser, which is headed by former Arnotts managing director Nigel Blow, has worked on a women's collection.

Kennedy expects the range to appeal to working women, providing 'desk to dinner' clothing.

"We have had so many professional women looking for that white shirt option, so we really believe it's going to be a range which will grow," she said.

"I would like to think they will become stalwarts of the collection and we will bring in other colours."

Kennedy said that since the Brexit vote, her business in London had performed strongly, with European shoppers taking advantage of weaker sterling.

"As a manufacturer and exporter, we don't know what it means yet."

"But from a retailer perspective, sales have really grown. The Europeans are spending money again in the UK," she said.

"In 2008, when Lehman collapsed, there was psychological shift away from spending. I haven't seen any of that yet."

The shirts will be available from September and will retail from €295. They will initially be sold through Louise Kennedy's stores in Dublin and London and in Brown Thomas.

Kennedy first began working with Turnbull and Asser in 2014, selling men's shirts from her Merrion Square store,

Turnbull and Asser, whose famous clients include Winston Churchill, last year opened a new flagship store in Mayfair, London.

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