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V&A collaborates on design inspired by city’s innovation

Style: Halley Stevensons’ managing director James Campbell with Kerrie Alexander (pic: Julie Howden for V&A Dundee)

V&A Dundee has partnered with Scottish designer Kerrie Alexander and textile innovators Halley Stevensons to produce its first limited edition fashion collaboration.

Museum, maker and manufacturer have united to create the Dundee Raincoat, a modern-day unisex raincoat inspired by the city’s innovation, creativity and resilience.

Designed and hand-produced by independent fashion label KerrieALDO, the raincoat is made using waterproof waxed cotton, a performance fabric Halley Stevensons has pioneered the development of for over 150 years, and continues to manufacture at its Baltic Works factory in Dundee.

Following the KerrieALDO design philosophy of slow, sustainable fashion, each of the 20 numbered raincoats and matching bags were hand-cut and crafted using unique patterns created for the collaboration.

The unisex fit raincoat, available in navy and orange, features signature KerrieALDO finishes such as coloured trims and an inner patch pocket made from Ancient Dundee Old Heavy Weight Tartan, a pattern which has not been used for 160 years and was recently resurrected by the Ben Nevis Handloom.

Kerrie Alexander, founder of KerrieALDO, said: “Partnering with a design museum and a textile factory to design the ultimate contemporary raincoat has been a brilliant experience.

“I came across ‘the slicker’, a hooded coat worn by fisherman, in the archives at Halley Stevensons and this has had a big influence on the design of the coat, as has V&A Dundee’s contemporary architecture.

“The coat has lots of special details to the inner which illustrate the level of care and attention that has gone into each piece.

“A collar was discussed at an early design meeting, but having grown up in Dundee, I knew a hood was an essential feature of the Dundee Raincoat, to deal with the changeable Scottish weather!

“Designing a bag to match was a fun addition to the project. The bag is similar to the coat design in that it comes in two colour-ways with opposing contrast details.

“The pocket on the bag features a window-like opening to reveal a new colour, which reminded me of looking out to the Tay from the windows of the museum.”

James Campbell, managing director at Halley Stevensons, said: “The Dundee Raincoat combines authentic heritage with contemporary style.

“Halley Stevensons is unique in that we work in the same way with large brands as we do with smaller artisan labels such as KerrieALDO.

“There is an understanding with our clients that we help them in any way we can, and they are part of our research and development with the feedback they give us in return. It’s an added bonus for us to watch brands develop with our product.

“Our collaborative process is always the same and we are exceptionally proud when we can support younger labels such as Kerrie’s.”

Christian Moire, director of operations at V&A Dundee, added: “Our visitors tell us they are interested in supporting independent designers and shopping for unique items that have a local connection. 

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“Dundee-based Halley Stevensons supplies international brands… so it was a natural fit for us to collaborate with them and KerrieALDO.

“We are excited to launch the Dundee Raincoat this autumn and to have worked with two very inspiring independent businesses.”

Established in 1864, Halley Stevensons (formerly Francis Stevensons) began life as a jute mill but soon evolved into specialist dyeing and finishing and now has a history of creating and developing waxed cotton and waterproof textiles which are exported around the world.

Products are normally showcased each season at London, Paris, New York, Munich and Milan.



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