BEHIND THE BRAND: Rosie Sugden Cashmere
Chilly mornings and those beautiful colours in nature are all around us…Autumn is well and truly here! With the dip in temperature, our attention has turned to all things cosy. We recently chatted to Rosie from Rosie Sugden Scottish Cashmere, one of our favourite Autumn/Winter brands, to give you a little behind-the-scenes insight into her wonderful cashmere accessories collection.
Can you tell us a little about your brand and the products you sell?
My name is Rosie Sugden and I design and manufacture cashmere in Scotland. I specialise in cashmere accessories and baby cashmere. All our products are made from 100% cashmere in the Scottish Borders and the collection is stocked at Fortnum & Mason, Anthropologie, Fenwick, Liberty, Saks Fifth Avenue, and of course Bod & Ted!
When was the brand founded?
I launched the business in October 2011 with a very tiny capsule collection to test the water. That’s where it all began really and the following year I launched a bigger collection and started wholesale.
Are there any key inspirations/motivations which drove you to start the brand?
My late Father is my biggest inspiration. He ran a vertical mill in Scotland for many years and when I was little he used to pick me up after school and take me round checking each department, the smell of the dye house is very nostalgic for me. He was very hands-on and knew every person in each department. He lived and breathed Textiles, and was without a doubt a leading expert on cashmere and Textiles in the UK. He championed maintaining traditional skills and supporting British Industry. It was his passion for textiles that seeped into my life and inspired me to start my brand.
Do you have any core values/a brand ethos?
I’ve grown up around the Scottish textile industry and there is such a wealth of skills in Scotland as well as a rich history with manufacturing. It didn’t even occur to me to consider manufacturing my collection anywhere else. I want to support local industry and utilise the highly skilled workforce that have been in the Scottish textiles industry for generations. All my products are made in sustainable environments and supporting UK jobs which is something I value highly. The expertise of the textiles workforce in the Scottish Borders has been handed down from generation to generation and I am proud to work with such highly skilled people.
Is there anything you know now that you wish you knew before starting the company?
I think it’s good to be quite naive when you start a business venture as I often think if I had known the challenges I would face along the way when I set up my business I might not have done it! I definitely think you have to live and breath your business, and that it’s really hard to impose strict office hours on yourself especially in this age of technology. The other mantra I used to remind myself when I first started was be Patient, Polite and Persistent. I found when I applied this to any aspect of my business it paid off.
What is your favourite thing about your brand/product you sell?
It’s incredibly soft and warm!
Rosie Sugden Smiley Face Wrist Warmers
Tell us something we may not know about your brand…
I can’t think of anything about my brand you might not know but here is an interesting fact about cashmere: Cashmere is the finest commercially available natural fibre in the world, it is in restricted supply and is expensive. With proper washing and care a cashmere garment’s handle will, like fine wine, actually improve.
Describe the brand in three words…
Sustainable, long-lasting and luxurious. Can I add cosy too?