British ambassador to Iceland, Stuart Gill (Second left)
While the Hebridean heatwave continues, Harris Tweed went centre stage in Iceland when it featured in a showcase of iconic British brands.
Shawbost-based Harris Tweed Hebrides was invited by the UK Ambassador in Rekyjavik to create a display of the fabric as a centerpiece of the Embassy’s Queen’s Birthday Party, which is a highlight of the social and trade calendar for British Embassies around the world.
More than 1200 guests attended the event the Rekyjavik event, held in the grounds of the ambassador’s residence. The other leading brands featured were LandRover/Jaguar and British Airways.
Harris Tweed Hebrides presented a show using garments from Walker Slater of Edinburgh, Carluke-based designer Elizabeth Martin, who works exclusively with Harris Tweed, and the Harris Tweed Clothing Company. There were also meetings with leading Icelandic retailers.
Creative director Mark Hogarth, who represented the company at the event, said: “Iceland is a small potential market but it punches far above its weight in global fashion and design which have become central to its economic strategy following the banking crash.
“It has also become a huge tourism destination, marketing itself as a crossroads between Europe and North America, as well as a port of call for hundreds of cruise ships each year. Harris Tweed sits very well alongside the high quality knitwear in which Iceland itself specialises”.
Harris Tweed Hebrides sells to more than 60 countries and gives work to more than 200 people in the Western Isles, including around 140 self-employed home weavers. The company is featured in the UK Government’s GREAT campaign which promotes iconic British products around the world.