It is with very sad fingers that I type the following news… Aquascutum is entering administration (for American readers that means it’s going bankrupt). We knew it was having a tough time as of late but didn’t know it had come this far along. Since 1851, this British fashion legend has been a staple on the scene here in England. Their name, which stems from the fact that they were the first to patent a waterproof wool, is one that has always been held in such high regard. In fact, they are even loved by the Royal family proven by the fact they have held Royal Warrants from monarchs since 1897. Memorable names such as Michael Caine, Cary Grant, Sophia Loren and even Winston Churchill have all shown their support for the brand over the years. Even their campaigns have been filled with gorgeous people ranging from Pierce Brosnan to Gisele Bundchen. So where did it all go wrong?
I suppose the first public sign of change for Aquascutum occurred in 1990. After being family run for over 100 years, the company was sold to a Japanese textile company. Then in 2008 the company came up for sale yet again and changed hands in 2009 when it was bought by Harold Tillman, owner of Jaeger. In 2010, designer Joanna Sykes was brought in to shake things up a bit with the label. And shake she did! Aquascutum showcased a line that had us all believing it would be the next big British comeback kid. For autumn winter 2012, in particular, the show had men and women jumping to their feet to applaud the pieces displayed. But alas, the third season for Joanna Sykes at the helm of Aquascutum appears to be the last goodbye for the company.
Let’s not give up hope, people! Brands have seen darker days than this and managed to come back to nearly rule the fashion world. Imagine Aquascutum being bought by someone who truly can turn things around. It could happen and we’re keeping our fingers crossed that it will. Joanna Sykes came in and shook things up once, now she just needs a cash cow to keep the momentum going. So if there are any potential fashion players out there reading… believe in Aquascutum. I don’t know who you need to call or how it can all come together but this is a brand that is worth saving… AQUASCUTUM NEEDS YOU!