Spotlight on: JW Anderson


JW Anderson is not only charming – an Irish charm at that, but an incredibly talented young designer.

Born in Magherafelt, Northern Ireland in 1984, Jonathan William Anderson is not a chap who has had blinkers on for fashion since the day he was born. He originally wanted to pursue a career in acting and it was only whilst studying drama he discovered a love for stage costume. Jonathan went on to study and explore menswear at the London College of Fashion, firing his passion and forming collections worthy of catwalks. Making his debut at London Fashion Week in 2007, he has embarked upon a natural progression into womenswear alongside his formidably esoteric accessories collection.

With a signature style of “things that can be borrowed from a man to a woman and from a woman to a man” it is no wonder that he has shot to success. He is famed for his knitwear across mens and womenswear, with a cult of knitwear nerd followers (like your author here) and his success is continuing to snowball following a 2011 nomination for the Emerging Talent award by the BFC, the position of creative director at Sunspel and the highly anticipated launch of a collection with Topshop.  Here we have a man with a busy diary and the blessing of  Sir Philip Green – this spells stardom, no?

What is particularly affable about him is not only his dedication, but his fondness for pushing boundaries – he is the sort of bloke who loves the simplicity of jeans and t-shirts, but enjoys the challenge of jazzing things up, injecting personality and creating a mish-mash out of the straightforward. Where the cocktail dress might always reign supreme, he is subtly cool in seeking to inspire our downtime pieces.

His experience within acting appears to have shaped his attitude towards his craft. He is quoted as having described his relationship with fashion as one in which: “You have to sell yourself to it if you want to make it. It’s like in the film Elizabeth at the end when Cate Blanchett decides she won’t marry anyone, instead she’ll marry herself to England.” Like most in the fashion industry, he recognises that “you have to become it and become the ambassador – you do live it and you do breathe it. It’s like acting, you have to become a thing.”

Jonathan’s SS13 show entitled “The Treatment Room”, was filled with the super cool such as Pixie Geldof, Daisy Lowe, Portia Freeman…to name but a few, and it extended that signature of sharing; think masculine pin stripe tailoring with oversized bows and petite clutches. Clean, simple, raw elements combined to create Jonathan’s marvellous medicine. Taste his collections here.


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