He’s the Scottish designer who started out in furniture and textile design but took the fashion world by storm with his retro-style prints and totally wearable waffle knit jumpers. So it came as a complete surprise when we heard that he is to close his namesake label after 12 years in business.
In a statement, the London Fashion Week favourite cited ‘personal reasons’ for the closure. "It is not a decision that I take lightly and I am eternally grateful to my team for all their hard work and dedication”. He went on, “I am very thankful for all of the friends that I have across the industry, and I look forward to working with everyone again soon on future creative projects”.
Here’s why we’re REALLY going to miss the Jonathan Saunders brand (and why we hope he’ll continue designing in another guise). Sob!
1. He made us fall madly in love with crazy retro prints (in a totally good way).
2. He got us wearing colour when we were scared of it, even though he doesn’t always wear it himself. “When I’m stressed out or depressed, I’ll just put on a black jumper and jeans, so I don’t have to make a colour decision on that day”, he told us in a recent interview with InStyle.
3. He put Britain on the map when US First Lady Michelle Obama wore his designs.
4. He also counts Carey Mulligan, Lady Gaga, Samantha Cameron, January Jones, Sienna Miller and The Duchess of Cambridge amongst his celebrity fans.
5. His designs might be eye-catching, but they appeal to women of all ages and professions (see above list for proof).
6. He managed to make beige look interesting on more than one occasion.
7. He got us into bomber jackets when we thought the only answer to a lightweight coat was a blazer.
8. He sparked a waffle jumper movement on the high street after his SS12 collection, for which we are forever grateful.
9. He’s really popular on the London Fashion Week circuit, and counts Christopher Kane and Roksanda Ilincic as two of his closest friends. “I love the camaraderie between designers”, he told us.
10. His recent collaboration with Radley is really REALLY lovely. Just check out this rucksack.
11. He’s quite Instagram shy, but his gorgeous dog Amber makes plenty of appearances on his account. And we do love an Instagram dog.
12. He worked hard to get where he is, and told us how he nicked his own collection from Italian backers to start his own label. “It was a complete sham and I was getting ripped off, so I stole the sample collection, put it in a suitcase, jumped on a Ryanair flight and headed straight back to London to meet Lulu Kennedy”.
We wish Jonathan the best…meanwhile, the company will be honouring orders from the label’s SS16 collection, so you might still be able to get your hands on a design by one of London Fashion Week’s finest.