British Clothing Brands
If you haven’t already swatted up on the best British clothing brands, you really should get to know them. The French may have elegant insouciance and Aussie labels carefree cool, but there’s an edge to the Brits that you can’t beat. London is the city that brought the world Mods in the Sixties, Punks in the Seventies and New Romantics in the Eighties, not to mention home-grown greats like Alexander McQueen, Vivienne Westwood and Paul Smith.
By shopping ‘local’ rather than relying on your old high street favorites, you’re helping do your bit for the planet. Ok, we’re not naive, we know that in 2023 most labels can’t viably hand-make everything in England, but they’re certainly trying to take more responsibility: Khanum’s makes everything to order in-house, 50% of Peachy Den’s factories are UK-based, while Nobody’s Child, Omnes and Damson Madder only work with deadstock and recycled fabrics.
If these impressive credentials aren’t enough to sway, the cool campaign imagery below certainly will. Keep scrolling to see 10 of the best British brands to buy from in 2024.
1. Nobody’s Child
By now you will have likely heard of London-based brand Nobody’s Child. The label launched in 2015 and was one of the first to champion sustainable clothing at accessible prices – right around the time British high street favorites were turning more and more to fast fashion methods. Fast forward eight years and Nobody’s Child has upped both its fashion and eco-credentials. By scaling up (the label is stocked at M&S, John Lewis and ASOS) it’s been able to offer wider stock while maintaining its dedication to using over 95% organic, lower impact or recycled materials.
2. House of Sunny
House of Sunny hit the big time in 2020 when its now-cult Hockney dress – loved by Kendall Jenner – became a sell-out success. You might not know this, but the British brand was actually launched in Hackney back in 2011. Skip to 2023 and the label is expanding beyond its graphic knits priced under £150. For Autumn/Winter 2023 we saw House of Sunny take to the runway with a grown-up Unisex offering of sheer evening dresses, fringed leather jackets and Noughties-inspired maxi skirts.
Albaray is the brainchild of ex-Warehouse executives and designers Karen Peacock, Paula Stewart and Kirstie Di Stazio. The trio hit pause on their fashion careers during the pandemic in 2020 (and after Warehouse was bought by Boohoo), coming together over Zoom to launch now-beloved independent British brand Albaray. From its 100% responsible sourced fabrics to recycled packaging, the label is proudly sustainable (find out more here). We’re big fans of its knitted dresses, tailored separates and plush wrap coats.
Khanum’s is a little different to the others in this edit – by which we mean, this British brand is unabashedly and unapologetically glam. Founder Rokeya Khanum takes inspiration from her Bangladeshi heritage and her culture’s love of OTT embroidery and embellishment when hand-creating pieces in her London studio. That’s right: from the floor-sweeping gowns and cutouts minis to ornate wedding suits, everything you browse is made to order here in the capital. This is slow fashion in its truest and chicest form.
5. Scarlett Gasque
Scarlett Gasque might technically be a lingerie brand, but we’ve never seen underwear so deserving of being shown off outside the house.
Plus, fashion’s current obsession with all things Y2k has brought back the corset in full force and the British brand’s offering of expertly-boned pieces is not to be missed. We’d definitely wear one of the faux fur-trimmed robes as outerwear, too.
The label’s Canadian-born founder Chloé Rogers studied Fashion History at Central Saint Martins – and what’s more British than that?
6. Jigsaw X Roksanda
Not one, but two British greats topping our edit: Roksanda Ilinčić has teamed up with beloved high street label Jigsaw on a capsule collection, which dropped today, on October 31. The 27-piece lineup exudes the same off-kilter elegance that’s made Ilinčić world-famous: it’s packed with rich, mixed-media textures, saturated hues and architectural cuts. With prices ranging from £90 to £2000 (for the glorious, reversible shearling coat depicted), it’s inevitable that half of this collection has already sold out – grab a piece of fashion collabo history while you still can.
7. Lily and Lionel
Lily and Lionel has evolved since its initial launch in 2008 – from a scarf brand, to a dedicated print house, to the womenswear label we know and love today. Prints are still at the heart of Lily and Lionel, with each individual design being hand-drawn in the brand’s London studio; they help bring each vintage-inspired collection to life. This season we’re coveting the late Sixties-inspired blouses and maxi dresses, as well as the cotton nightwear sets.
Another sustainable British brand to have on your radar is Omnes. Launching in 2020, the label has stuck to its guns in the past three years, creating small collections made entirely from deadstock and recycled fabrics. The team thinks about aftercare too, sourcing fabrics made from the same yarn throughout to ensure ease of recycling at the end of life. Omnes’ signature look is the bias-cut, cowl-neck slip – a flattering and timeless silhouette that paved the way for its recent eveningwear collaboration with actor Naomie Harris OBE.
Ex-Smythson creative director Samantha Cameron (yes, the same Sam Cam you’re thinking of) launched Cefinn in 2017. The British brand quickly built a loyal customer base and having tried its clothes we can guess why: the fit is impeccable. The words ‘for real women’ are thrown around A LOT in fashion, but this stuff is actually designed with day-to-day life in mind; not to mention it flatters a diverse range of bodies. Our favorite piece ever has to be the corduroy Daphne dress – it’s like the wearable, more affordable version of The Vampire’s Wife’s party looks.
10. The Vampire’s Wife
Susie Cave knows fashion. Before she founded The Vampire’s Wife in 2014 she worked as a model and muse for the likes of Vivienne Westwood, Bella Freud and Philip Treacy. It didn’t take long for her Brighton-based label to take over: and it’s all thanks to its whimsical, f0rm-flattering dresses that nod to prairie silhouettes in the most luxurious way possible. We can’t count on two hands how many style icons have worn the British brand – but let The Princess of Wales (three times, including in a royal portrait), Dakota Johnson, Margot Robbie, Sienna Miller, Alexa Chung and Salma Hayek sit with you for just a second.