How great is it to see the British high street embracing style conscious ‘mid century modern’ women with well made, classic cuts that have contemporary flair? Whistles has successfully led the charge here for a while, M&S is doing so much better and Jigsaw is the latest to up its game.
As Lisa Armstrong pointed out in The Telegraph, Jigsaw was amazing in the 90s but then it lost its mojo. I remember the John Pawson-designed store and Juergen Teller campaigns and it was even successful enough to have snooty PRs who could afford to ignore you if your publication wasn’t cool enough for them.
However it’s not entirely Jigsaw’s fault that things slipped. The market changed as we entered the decade of Tom Ford’s Gucci, Juicy Couture, Victoria Beckham and Britney. Grungy minimalism just wasn’t cool in the 00s and I think they decided to grow up with their customer which resulted in too much sensible work wear and an over-abundance of pastel knits. Fast forward a little and Top Shop Unique, Zara and Cos have stepped forward to fill the Jigsaw-shaped hole for the 40+ market.
Props to the brand for taking risks again. Its store in Duke Street may be slightly off the beaten track but it’s making a statement in its bid for the aspirational Mayfair customer. And the product in there looks wonderful, from the menswear it launched three years ago to the current AW15 collection (below)…
This week sees the latest initiative from Jigsaw, a collection called A-Line (below). Arriving in 6 stores (and online), Jigsaw A-Line is a big step up from mainline Jigsaw with prices around the £300 mark for trousers and £700 for coats. These are designed as timeless ‘artisan-inspired’ pieces with UK and Italy-sourced fabrics to justify the prices. I’m guessing they expect to be positioned alongside the likes of Joseph and Nicole Farhi. The oversized, loosely-tailored coats (£695) are my winners, along with the culottes (£295), chunky knits (£295) and a beautiful tulip-print silk charmeuse top (£295). Buy it HERE.
WORDS: Navaz Batliwalla/Disneyrollergirl