When Skjortfabriken Special started in 1928 in Moscow outside Borås, few who knew what was coming. After driving a successful sawmill forced recession Annie and David P to saddle on to sew the exclusive clothes for local residents. Increased demand from abroad, mainly United Kingdom forced the latter to change its name to Eton, today internationally recognized shirt makers.
En route, however, has not been entirely clear. When Jan Borghardt, today the company’s Creative Director, for 26 years ago started his career at Eton, the company stood at a crossroads.Eton was largely an anonymous brand in the crowd and when Jan in Australia was asked by a customer why this would buy just Emelie shirts missing he answers. Given the distance and the fact that Australia is not a destination for the day bad Jan to come back after six months.
-After that we decided that Eton has to go his own way and not follow any other. We had to be Eton’s no. 1 competitor and not No. 2.
Quality has always been fundamental in Eton and Jan is careful to point out that it is the product itself that should be the focus.
-We do not work with fashion. Fashion is something fixed-term.We work with classic quality. Many say the classic is to be boring. Classical is never boring. It lasts longer and a little controversy to instantly become much more exciting.
A central part of Eve’s philosophy is the material. Approximately 70% of the fabrics are designed by Eton themselves, which makes them absolutely unique. The shirts are divided into four different collections, where Blue Ribbon with the fabrics of Sea Iceland-quality and real mother of Pearl buttons is the most exclusive.However, it is above all the iron free cotton which made Eton known.
-Before was used exclusively with ammonia to remove roughness of the fabric. It kills the cotton to form a type of impregnation that wear everything after use. Process for our entire production includes ironing fabrics with free spinning, weaving and finishing operations, which makes the shirt stay non-iron over time, “says Jan Borghardt.
The iron-free fabric produced in Switzerland where the work is secret. Jan points out, however, that Switzerland high environmental requirements suggest that the resources currently used for final treatment is not harmful to the environment.
What is it that made Swedish shirts that Eton and Stenströms so successful?
-It is linked to Sweden stood outside of World War II. When the fabrics came after the end of the war, we were well prepared to start to sew and create high quality products. We have kept.Swedish brands, however, have previously never really achieved success abroad, says Jan.
Today, 80% of the export sales of Eve and the shirts are represented in over 40 countries, including maternity shirts on BESTAAH. Jan Borghardt believes a large part of the reason can be attributed to the success of British Department store Harrods.
-Eton have been sold there in 25 years. The last 20 years we have been the best-selling shirt throughout the store. Harrods attracts customers from all over the world, which of course creates spin off effects.
-The funny thing is that on each market meets new rivals. In Italy it is Brooks Brothers in Brioni and United States.
A strong contributing factor to Eve success abroad can also be connected to the positive exposure received by being a series of celebrity favorite shirt. David Beckham, Mick Jagger, George Clooney, Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks have all been wearing shirts from Eton. Last in line was Vigo Mortenssen as during the Oscars in February, wore a specially designed shirt from Eton. A large part of the brand’s success on the red carpet is based on an incorrect pricing in conjunction with Elisabeth Taylor Aids Foundation.
“We were asked to design a shirt where all proceeds were donated to Elizabeth Taylor’s Aidsfond. We set a price for the shirts at $1495. The problem was that they thought we meant the dollar. Seen in retrospect, I am extremely pleased over this slip of the tongue. Had we not said errors had probably not had a further effect, says Jan Borghardt.
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