Jackie Maguire | Dressing for Winter
"Jackie Maguire talks to fashion journalist, Nikki Owen, about the new, elegant Jackie Maguire limited-edition collection and discovers the timeless quality of clothes that make you feel confident."
It's coming up to Winter, and life, as it does, is getting busier.
Meetings, business travel, maybe a school play to attend, evening drinks with friends, dinner, all the while having one eye on not simply how we look, but how we feel.
For isn't what well-made clothes are about? Isn't that what a good piece of outerwear does for us, transform how we feel.
But to do that, to transform us, to allow us to feel good in what we wear no matter what's going on in our lives, we need to have beautifully-made clothes - coats and jackets- that are exquisitely tailored, statement pieces spun with the finest yarn, creating a timeless quality that will carry us, as Winter draws slowly in, from day to night, allowing us to exude the confidence we know we have.
As I catch up with Jackie in between shows for her new collection, she explains "Well designed clothes are the ones that go beyond fleeting fashion trends."
This season is about tweed but not as we know it. Just one look at Jackie Maguire's intricately made tweed designs (every Jackie Maguire coat and jacket is hand-cut and sewn in England by the best artisan makers) and you can see not only the sheer attention to detail but the inherent style, too.
This is a designer with a difference. With her coats and jackets hailed as the Audrey Hepburn style-edit of our times, each piece casts a classic silhouette that never fades - and it's a talent that comes from experience.
Jackie designed for Italian megabrand Maxmara, a brand synonomous with style and luxury, designing is in Jackie's DNA, making clothes at just eight years old, she has built a career with an enviable list of brands she has designed for.
"It's about the cut of the cloth," Jackie tells me, over a coffee, Yorkshire-born mother-of-two now living in the Cotswolds, with honesty, integrity and a wicked sense of humour high on her list of important values in herself and others. "It's about good design, exceptional craftsmanship and meticulous attention to detail. These are my cornerstones. I am proud to work with the finest fabric mills in the British Isles, yarn suppliers and artisan specialists who carefully hand-cut and make every garment with passion."
Jackie's style, integrity and passion are clearly fed into her latest limited-edition collection. There are four new elegantly timeless pieces, from the Classic Fitted Trench in grey check and the Classic fitted trench in blue windowpane check, to the Relaxed fit jacket in pink herringbone and the beautiful Relaxed fit jacket in natural herringbone overcheck.
When I get to view the collection, it is stunning. I touch a billowed sleeve, a beautifully tailored collar, a nipped -in belt. Each piece is made from natural, pure wool, giving such a depth of colour, providing a delicious warmth against the skin. With Jackie assisting me, I slip on the Classic Fitted Trench in blue windowpane check, and oh my goodness, the feel of it.
"This is amazing, Jackie," I tell her, as my eyes take in the intricate stitching of the label, my fingertips feeling the soft brush of the fabric. This is timeless, truly. "I feel so confident wearing it, I could take anything on," I say.
Jackie smiles. "That's why I love what I do." Then she pauses for a moment, reflective. "It's about the sheer joy of wearing beautiful clothes. I want to feel good in what I wear. A great coat is like a best friend - we all have those days when we just don't want to think about putting an outfit together, but when you slip on an amazing coat, one you really love, you immediately feel lifted. You feel amazing."
I look in the mirror one more time, take in the chic trench coat, plan in my head to perhaps wear it to travel to a big editorial meeting in Paris the following week.
Because wearing a Jackie Maguire coat, in the fashion capital of Paris? To a big meeting as Winter calls? I know I'll feel not only warm, but crucially, the minute I slip it on, I'll feel good.