THE doors to the house of Hardy Amies are about to be opened. To coincide with the designer's 100th birthday, the fashion house will open its extensive and largely unseen archive to the public at its newly refurbished No.14 Savile Row London premises - its home since the business was established in 1946.
Curated by Austin Mutti-Mewse, Sir Hardy Amies: A Century of Couture will pay homage to the designer, his association with royalty (he was dressmaker to HM Queen Elizabeth II from her accession to the throne until his retirement in 1989), as well as his time on Savile Row. Photographs, personal diaries, letters and sketches never seen before - of Princess Elizabeth and his costumes for 2001: A Space Odyssey - will also be on show alongside a specially commissioned documentary film with insight from those that worked with Amies.
The Hardy Amies Archive will be open at No.14 Savile Row, London, W1. Entry is free and by appointment.
Savile Row recently established their own kitemark, and so it's natural for them to really ascertain themselves among the current public as a historical brand. Amies has accomplished much in life, and so it's necessary to have his past on view. By making it appointment only, it would be interesting to see who would go to the effort to see the archive. The current generation wants everything to be as easy as email, so having to call up and speak to a person on the phone is really more like the... er... buyers of Savile Row and Hardy Amies.