'The awfulness of the gift shops and their find-a-family-tartan, Bonnie Prince Shortbread and dress-like-a-highlander outfits... Jesus-and-Mary tea-trays... bad tablecloths and wallpaper,' read the show notes. Entertaining reading, but the clothes were anything but dour, Mr Grant.
Patrick Grant, owner and creative director of E Tautz, revised traditional tweeds and classic Scottish tartans with immaculate results for his menswear show today. Double-breasted overcoats woven in oversized plaid, in colours reminiscent of the Highland countryside, sang tradition yet were ultimately modern. Paisley patterned pants in aubergine silk jacquard looked all the skinnier for those traditional chunky English brogues. Razor-sharp, double-breasted jackets, shrunken woollens, knee length coats in Highland sky-grey, heather purple and peat-bog-black plaid were modern-day-old-fashioned without a hint of twee.
Cuffed tailored trousers worn with a sport coat, a snug rain hat, a classic black, caped-back overcoat and a zingy orange single-breasted suit were womenswear-wish-list worthy. 'Oh Vienna,' sang Ultravox!
Will the plaid coats and skinny brocade trousers - a winning silhouette - make it into the debut women’s collection next season? ‘There are no plans for a full women’s collection yet but I want to distill the essence of what the men’s is about into the women’s shirting line,' said Grant of his first foray into womenswear this spring.
E Tautz shirts for women are simply cut in a range of classic English men’s shirting fabrics in traditional Savile Row style. But don’t expect an overly feminine twist. ‘There are no bust darts, and the shirts are handmade using the same scrupulous single needle construction as the men’s’, Grant said.
So why should women buy shirts from a menswear designer? ‘Because they’re cool, cute and nicely made’, he said. Judging by his show today, we believe him.