Ascher Studios was famed in the 1940s, 50s and 60s for their partnerships with artists and designers to develop fabrics and, scarves. Collaborations were done with painter Feliks Topolski, photographer Cecil Beaton and sculptor Henry Moore and in the 50s, designers such as Givenchy, Larouche and Balenciaga, lead by Christian Dior, employed Ascher silk and cotton prints for their Haute Couture collection. Mary Quant also famously used Ascher fabric for her iconic cheesecloth dresses in the seventies.
While Ascher’s print archives are still employed today by modern designers, the studio itself has been quiet for some time – until now.
At London fashion week this week the famed Ascher Studio launched their first new collection of scarves in thirty years.
Being the first collection in so long, the emphasis was on reconfigured designs from the Ascher archive. “We are beginning with a vintage style collection which references the past, but we’re very much looking to new designs for future collections” says Sam Ascher.
The SS11 collection includes designs by artists such as Henry Moore, Graham Sutherland, Feliks Topolski, Graham Wilde and others, all commissioned by Sam’s grandfather, Zika Ascher in 1946. “We have scaled most of them up, because in the late forties, scarves were small, but the fashion has moved on” says Sam.
Our favourite is the scarf called London 1944 by Feliks Topolski. It is a beautiful vintage piece, which he actually designed in 1946, to celebrate British servicemen and women. It is printed in navy or pillar box red on a soft cashmere blend and features a London Bus, and fluid figures moving with the unmistakable British optimism and determination of the period.
With an emphasis on superb textiles, the collection is silk-screen printed on silk chiffon, silk twill, and a super-soft cashmere twill blend in Como, Italy.
“At our core, we are a fabric company,” Ascher say on their website. “Textiles are the foundation of fashion and we want to design products featuring exquisite textiles that highlight an art that has far too often been commoditized in modern times.”
We look forward to seeing what new collaborations they commission and what wearable projects they will feature next.