Savile Row – some 300 metres of road in the heart of Mayfair, London – has remained the epicentre of British bespoke tailoring for two centuries. But with time comes change, and when London was in the thick of the swinging sixties a breath of fresh air was blown into the Row.
Rock ‘n’ roll icons came for the greatest suits, crafted from the finest cloths. The Beatles paved the way for a music revolution which was taking over the world with force and in 1969 the Fab Four performed for the final time on the rooftop of No. 3 Savile Row.
And so, in 2013, in seems only fitting that leading British menswear magazine British GQ has woven its magic to combine Savile Row’s best with the greatest rock icons from the past quarter of a century, as the high-profile publication celebrates 25 years since its first print run.
Under the artistic direction of British GQ creative fashion director Jo Levin, GQ has produced a sartorial photographic journey in collaboration with The Woolmark Company, dressing 14 of the most instrumental performers who have rocked the world since 1988. They have been dressed in the finest Australian Merino wool, grown on farms which have remained within the same family for generations to perfect the production of the precious, natural fibre.
This is music at its best dressed.
“By shooting some of the greatest rock icons in the best of Savile Row wool tailoring, we hope we have produced a timeless portfolio that properly reflects the brand values of both GQ and Woolmark.” GQ UK editor-in-chief Dylan Jones.
Sitting in a bespoke wool suit, tailored to perfection by the craftsman of Savile Row, is Sir Elton John. He’s dressed by Richard James – a Savile Row tailor who represents the quintessentially luxurious English gentleman and is perhaps just as iconic as the Rocket Man himself. The suit, a chalk-striped flannel, is made from the finest Australian Merino wool carefully manufactured by one of the UK’s best weavers, Taylor & Lodge, Huddersfield.
Sir Elton John appears alongside 13 other musicians who too represent quintessential British rock. Amongst the rock ‘n’ roll icons are Johnny Marr, Roger Daltrey, Ray Davies, Jarvis Cocker, John Taylor and Bryan Ferry, as well as relative newcomers Dizzee Rascal and Mark Ronson who have all come together to help British GQ celebrate a quarter of a century.
In a video and music exclusively recorded for these celebrations, Marr, Taylor and Paul Weller’s guitar skills remind modern day music aficionados why they are who they are. Cocker busts out the moves in his vintage sport check jacket from Edward Sexton – whilst the others are filmed close-up from the shoot to show Merino wool’s versatility, drape and tailoring detail.
Merino wool is, and has always been, part of the fabric of modern life. It’s a fibre that is real, accessible, responsible and iconic. For The Woolmark Company – who knows the full extent of wool’s infinite potential – the global authority on Merino wool is here presenting the fabric of innovation in its finest form. The GQ celebrations allow the Woolmark brand to promote its Merino Wool. No Finer FeelingTM fibre advocacy campaign and present the fibre in a truly iconic way.
The versatility of Merino wool and the mix of different music genres provide a snapshot of Music. Fashion for your ears and Fashion. Music for your eyes.
The celebrations also coincide with a two week display on Savile Row and Jermyn Street of life-size images of the musicians in their wool finery and commemorative window decals and wool displays.
British GQ editor-in-chief Dylan Jones explains how the collaboration between the magazine and The Woolmark Company represents the core common values shared by the two iconic brands.
“For the past 25 years GQ has gone out of its way to celebrate the classic and the contemporary, the traditional with the modern. In our rock ‘n’ roll Savile Row wool story in our 25th anniversary we think we may have achieved the perfect fusion of the two. By shooting some of the greatest rock icons in the best of Savile Row wool tailoring, we hope we have produced a timeless portfolio that properly reflects the brand values of both GQ and Woolmark.”
Working with The Woolmark Company, American designer Thom Browne reinvents the suit with Cool Wool