Richard James was founded on Savile Row in 1992 by designer Richard James and his business partner Sean Dixon with a simple if cunning philosophy that remains to this day: to produce classic men’s clothing of exceptional quality and push the boundaries through colour, cut and design. Richard James respected the two hundred-year history of tailoring on Savile Row and each of its perfectly practiced traditions, but set out with a not always quiet determination to do things its own way.
At the heart of Richard James' success has always been its audience and its ability to sway those who might not have ordinarily been Savile Row clients. Over the years that's included many era-defining men, from Tom Cruise (who wore a Richard James tuxedo to the 1997 Academy Awards), Hugh Grant, George Clooney (who wore Richard James for his recent round of Nespresso commercials), David Beckham, Daniel Craig, Jude Law and, perhaps most notably, Sir Elton John. A fan of the brand since the beginning, it was John who, in 2011, asked James to design the stage costumes for his Million Dollar Piano shows at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Fans should note that one of the results of this collaboration, a gold single-breasted jacket encrusted entirely with Swarovski crystals, is on display upstairs at the Clifford Street Bespoke shop. John also helped spread awareness of Richard James to some of the most influential names in the fashion industry.
In 2001, James scooped Menswear Designer Of The Year at both GQ's Men Of The Year Awards and the British Fashion Council Awards, who in 2008 would also name him Bespoke Designer Of The Year.
Their SS20 A Sporting Life collection breathes bounteously, girds its loins and strides steadfastly forward, perfectly primped, into a rich, reassuringly gentlemanly open-air world that rings with the sweet sound of leather on willow, splendid, splashing-about skiffs, thundering horses hooves and all-round Albionesque exertion.