After announcing his role as an ambassador for Merino wool, Sir Paul Smith featured this fibre throughout his spring/summer 2014 collection, focusing on summer-friendly, lighter-weight fabrics in his London Collection made to exacting specifications known as Cool Wool.
In a bid to increase wool’s presence across the seasons whilst maintaining a high level of luxury, quality and attention to details, Paul Smith is assisting the Woolmark Company in achieving this presence though the global roll out of Cool Wool at retailers across Asia.
“The Far East has always been very good for me we have 265 shops in Japan, but we are also selling and have shops in Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand,” explains Smith.
“We will be focusing on men’s and women’s clothes, with an emphasis on luxury, which includes of course all the wool suits and the Cool Wool suits which work perfectly in a country like China.”
For the global authority on Merino wool, the Paul Smith SS14 London Collection offers British style and heritage - loved by the Asian market – and is warmly welcomed, particularly through the use of Cool Wool fabrics. The fabric design and development pays great attention to detail which is extended to garment styling – an iconic feature of Paul Smith apparel.
Seven worsted Cool Wool fabrics woven by leading European mills have been selected for the Paul Smith London Collection. Cool Wool fabrics are made from fine Australian Merino wool fashioned into lightweight fabrics through modern manufacturing and processing techniques. Merino wool is the natural fibre of choice for a spring/summer 14 collection due to its natural breathability, softness, drape, moisture absorption.
Initially launched nearly 30 years ago, the modern incarnation of Cool Wool is bringing the fibre further into the 21st century, telling to consumers a story that wool is in fact cool in more than one way.
Paul Smith has a global fashion following with a particularly strong presence in the Asian and Middle East markets, where there is a need for garments which can perform well in hot temperatures and also regulate changes in temperature from cool indoor air-conditioned rooms to the hotter outdoor environment.
As an ambassador for the natural, biodegradable and renewable fibre, Smith knows all too well the trans-seasonal properties inherent in Merino wool.
“Cool Wool is perfect for lots and lots of countries because if you suffer from humidity it’s going to have a lot of life, and if you are a traveller then a Cool Wool travel suit is perfect for you,” says Smith. “This is because the yarn is twisted really tight, woven really tightly, and when you get up off an aeroplane or a train it just springs back to life, so a travel suit is a very cool thing.”
The launch of Paul Smith’s Cool Wool collection in Shanghai focussed on two key events. The first was Sir Paul Smith presenting ‘Hello. My Name is Paul Smith’, which offered an afternoon presentation on tailoring, Cool Wool and travel suits. Held in Shanghai’s Jing An Art Centre, the space was transformed to represent men’s and womenswear fabrics and garments from the Paul Smith SS14 season and a preview of the AW14/15 season, where wool once again will feature prominently.
This was followed by the flagship store opening event showcasing the Cool Wool collection and a special collection created exclusively for the store launch event of 10 Limited Edition Travel Suits, manufactured using lightweight Cool Wool fabrics in a classic navy blue high twist yarns.
“This new store in Shanghai in the Kerry Centre is next to a lot of the international brands, so we are very pleased with that.”
Celebrating Merino wool and its trans-seasonal versatility, Sir Paul Smith has brought his sartorial charm to Korea, exhibiting his ‘Cool Britannia’ collection at the Paul Smith flagship store in Seoul.
“I have always been a fan of natural fibres; cotton for shirts and wool for the rest,” said Smith. “Of course, over the years since I started there have been lots of other new high-tech fabrics that have arrived, but I tend to stick with my wool.”
For the Paul Smith brand, Cool Wool remains an important element, largely because they sell into 72 countries right across the world.
“A lot of countries we sell to are very hot all year round or very humid and Cool Wool has really helped us with that. A lot of our clients are actors, fashion designers, architects, graphic designers, people who are on aeroplanes or trains, travelling all the time, and so you need fabrics that have got life.”
Found in 12 stores across Korea, Paul Smith’s SS14 London Collection made from Cool Wool fabrics beautifully showcase the versatility of the fibre and highlight its natural breathability, softness, drape and moisture management.
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