Meet a pioneer of British fashion, make that international fashion, who dresses royalty of Hollywood as well as the monarchy of the British Empire and he goes by the name of Bruce Oldfield. For the more uninformed amongst us, here is a very brief history:
He was a graduate of St. Martins and he opened the door for so many designers who came after him. He was a prodigy discovered by Jean Rosenberg or Gerry Stutz (my guess) of Henri Bendel by age 25 and soon he was an internationally recognized designer with retail outlets all over the world. At 28 he was designing and offering haute couture and by 34 he opened his eponymous shop on Beauchamp Place in London. By 40 he was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire for his contribution to fashion. Not bad for any designer??
Unquestionably he is a pillar of fashion and a survivor of the fashion media machine who remains healthfully in business for those women of discerning taste who truly want to be able to wear exquisitely made and designed clothes of timeless style. His bridal gowns are those of fantasy and chic and again, only for those savvy enough to seek out apparel that is steeped in the traditions and fine craftsmanship of high fashion.
Today we are blessed and fortunate enough to have convinced Mr. Oldfield to share some of his thoughts, opinions and personal world with us…. so please welcome him to the fold!
1-What is the most treasured possession in your wardrobe?
A very old and distressed Issey Miyake navy linen shirt.
2-What is your most sterling trait and what trait do you treasure most in your friendships?
A good grip on reality
3-What is your bliss?
Playing the piano, my dogs sleeping by my feet
4-What is your guilty secret?
5-Where is your ideal home?
Tucked away in a valley in the Berkshire downs
6-What would you say is your greatest accomplishment to date?
Owning a business for forty years
7-What is on your bedside table right now?
My iPad, my kindle and a pile of half-read books
8-What do you wear to bed?
9-What if any, book are you reading now or last read?
Paul Auster, winter journal
10-What’s your advice to the “newcomer?”
Learn your craft or find a very rich sugar daddy
11-Who or what is your inspiration/style icon?
I have many people who have helped and inspired me.
12-What is the best advice you ever received?
Don’t let the bastards get you down
13-In 3 words or less, describe the current state of fashion.
14-If you could select a dream project, what would it be?
Be financed to produce a top end ready-to wear collection to sell internationally, that didn’t require my presence to facilitate sales.
15-If you won a $200,000,000 power ball (lottery), what is the first thing you would buy or do?
Probably finance the previous question—still be independent...
16-If you could invite up to 4 people for dinner, who would they be…dead or alive?
I know you would prefer me to choose ghastly show-offs like Dorothy Parker and Oscar Wilde, but I think I’d prefer HM the Queen, Marilyn Monroe, president Obama and Fred Astaire
17-What is your favorite movie /or movie star?
18-What is the one thing you would change about yourself?
I should be more sociable. Less reclusive
19-Whose opinion do you value most and why?
Primarily my own and then I get professional advice through a network of consultants and worldly-wise friends like Romilly Mcalpine who lives in Venice
20-What store or which designer do you most like to shop in or wear?
I have clothes made for me, mainly by Edward Sexton; I occasionally try RTW but am always unhappy about the quality and the fit
21-What’s your take on magazines, books versus the internet?
I don’t buy fashion magazines. I do have a kindle which is brilliant but I still prefer a hardback book
22-Do you have a dream collaborator?
No…..part of me wants to say Pierre Berge ….
23-Have you ever wanted to just throw in the towel and why?
No, there’s still plenty to do...
24-What’s your music library like?
from Harold Melvyn, through Joni Mitchell, Maria Callas to Mistsuko Uchida playing Mozart , Gerald Finzi to Gregory Porter…totally eclectic.
25-What and where is your favorite meal?
Lebanese mezze from Maroush in Beauchamp place.
Couture, bridal and custom made, together with complementing accessories, can be found at 27 & 34 Beauchamp