Shoe Repair London, Handbag Repairs London - The Restory, London

How Phoebe Gormley Founded The First Women's Only Tailor On Savile Row

Emily John
 Phoebe Gormley at Gormley & Gamble

Phoebe Gormley at Gormley & Gamble

With a passion for womenswear and tailoring since the age of 13, Phoebe Gormley of Gormley of Gormley & Gamble has redefined Savile Row. She founded the first tailor catering exclusively to women when she was only 20 and was named in Forbes 30 under 30 last year. Phoebe’s youth and combined passion for tailoring and technology has turned an antiquated process into a modern day convenient based service. Here she dives into her roots and what’s more in store for her made-to-measure business including a side dish of excellent advice. And in collaboration with The Restory, Gormley & Gamble is offering our readers an exclusive discount to have you suited and booted this time of the year! Find out more below.


Tell us a bit about what inspired you to set up the first women’s only tailor on Savile Row?

It was a passion for femininity, style, substance and Savile Row, wanting to be the first person to partner them all together for this first time and create magic. 


Where does your passion for tailoring come from?

My granny is an excellent seamstress, but since she lives in South Africa, I guess it’s in the genes. Like any teenage girl, I had an insatiable appetite for clothes, but I lived in the middle of nowhere, where the local village had three churches, a pub and a fabric shop; my salvation. I started making clothes for myself when I was 13, started interning around Savile Row when I was 15, and that’s when the love affair began. 


Other than designing exclusively for women, what sets your business apart from the rest of the tailors on Savile Row? 

 Gormley & Gamble red tuxedo

Gormley & Gamble red tuxedo

I suppose I have quite a modern take on silhouette, not stuffy four button jackets. I am also sustainability conscious and thus try to use suppliers who have the same outlook as I do; meaning every mill, every maker, every seamstress is paid fairly, on time, given good holiday, the whole nine yards. I wouldn’t want to make clothes that squash the woman making it to empower the one wearing it. I also am more open minded to fabrics and won’t cut corners, so a lot of Savile Row suits will be gorgeous wool on the outside, but often still lined with polyester- horrifying! Whereas, I adore silk and go to town with it wherever possible. We have just received our second round of Liberty’s Limited Edition silks, which are to die for. 


What does it take to become a successful entrepreneur & do you have any advise for someone starting out in Fashion?

Patience and resilience. Everyone will think your life is glam and fabulous, and some people might not be happy for you, but just stay true to yourself and don’t forget to switch off. People see it as a flaw or as a sign of weakness when you need to decompress, but you can only keep the love alive if you’re also allowed distance sometimes. Just like with any relationship, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Savile Row is anti-fashion and anti three-month trends; it’s style, it’s about something that suits you, completely and utterly and not about what any editor tells you to wear. It’s your body isn’t it?


Where do you hope to take Gormley & Gamble in the next few years and which other projects are you working on? 

We’ve recently launched our first ready-to-wear line of limited edition sporting jackets in collaboration with Donna Ida Denim and another round of velvets just came out in black and dark green for this Autumn. I’ve always wanted to create a RTW line with decadent never-cutting-corners-gorgeousness. We also trialled the idea of a dress where clients can input their measurements online, our ELBD, and it worked fantastically! So perhaps evolving that into a collection of ‘The Ultimate White Shirt’ is going to be the next step.


What are your investment pieces and how do you take care of them?

I love a good handbag and a nude suede heel. I love wearing suede as I get blisters so easily, but it does need TLC. I try to rotate as often as I can and not wear the same shoe more than a few days in a row to stop the leather from stretching. I always spray them before I even plan to wear them, just as soon as they come home. Sometimes I get feet put onto the bottom of bags that don’t have them so the underside stays lovelier for longer. 


What can you not live without? 

My family, my other half, my black cockapoo Luna, earl grey tea, and cardamom brownies from the Good Egg. 


What’s your advice for women looking to have something tailored for the first time? 

The first one is always the hardest; that’s where all the pain-staking pattern cutting time is involved, that’s the real skill. But once that’s done and the correlating series of fittings, any orders after that are easy peasy. So look at it as a long-term investment, not a short term fix. These are items made to be worn forever, not that top that you thought was nice but started falling apart after the fifth wear. They say women wear 20% of their wardrobe 80% of the time; so spend your money according to that rule, spend 80% of the ‘wardrobe allowance’ on the 20% you’ll never get sick of and that you’ll love. Spend 20% of the allowance on the 80% you’ll wear once a year at a push, because you bought it on a whim. Or better yet, don’t buy it, don’t add it to landfill in six months time and buy one thing amazing instead of ten mediocre pieces, that’s my advice. 

 Phoebe Gormley at the atelier

Phoebe Gormley at the atelier

 Gormley & Gamble fabric samples

Gormley & Gamble fabric samples

Please use discount code RESTORYGG and receive £100 off your next order at Gormley & Gamble. Offer valid on all orders above £500, until 30 November 2018.  

Irina Lakicevic Talks Creativity, MINT Journal And Sustainable Fashion

Emily John
 Irina Lakicevic, Editor MINT Journal Image: rubystudio

Irina Lakicevic, Editor MINT Journal Image: rubystudio

MINT Journal founder and street-style star Irina Lakicevic was born in Serbia and spent her youth in Norway as a war refugee before she pursued a career in dentistry and becoming an editor, ultimately leaving her Scandinavian home town Bergen for the hustle and bustle of London. Her unusual path to becoming a fashion icon also seems to translate to her unique dress sense; she’s a layering expert with a penchant for vintage Manolo’s and Céline. Her balancing act between masculine and feminine and unusual style is nothing less than noteworthy. With a great love for vintage, she’s also passionate about sustainable fashion and re-wearing items as much as possible- in short, our kind of girl! As the editor of MINT Journal, she brings contemporary and curated views on art and lifestyle to the digital space. Intrigued by her individual trail of thought and effortless style, we had to take a moment to explore her ideas on career, fashion and sustainability. Not to mention, as a fashion week regular, her packing tips are on point and will sort you out on any trip.  


Tell us about your platform MINT Journal and what makes it unique in the digital stratosphere?

I think MINT is one of the few websites that’s targeting an audience that print has covered so well. It is essentially an intersect between fashion, art and design that’s meant to provide a deeper insight into a myriad of topics concerning young people of today.


Is there a tried and tested way for you to unwind and tackle the hectic of fashion month?

 I have just arrived from two-week holiday and as soon as I have landed I started cleansing my wardrobe. Tasks like that, as a way of decluttering, provide much needed clarity and help you tackle whatever comes to your mind.


 Irina Lakicevic Image: ITB Worldwide

Irina Lakicevic Image: ITB Worldwide

What is the most challenging part about your work and how do you manage to stay creative?

 I think balancing the act of business and creativity is a tricky one. The same goes for the thought of staying fresh and doing something relevant when we are constantly involved in a ceaseless stream of photos - I feel everything and everyone merges into one another so staying fresh and bringing new ideas to the table is a tricky task.

As you are always on the go, what are your expert tips on packing shoes and handbags for travel. What is your foolproof system?

Shoes should always be packed at the bottom of the suitcase and they always need to be kept in their dustbag. Bags go on the top. A swift trick is to fill bags and shoes with smaller items like socks, t-shirts etc. so that they keep the shape of the accessories and save space at the same time!


You are an avid supporter of circular fashion, why is this an important subject to you?

I am not sure how obvious it is but our society needs a new way to dispose of waste, and right now fashion is the second most polluting industry in the world, contributing to more waste than we can ultimately handle. In all honesty, how many off-shoulder tops and wrap skirts does one need?


How do you decide which pieces to invest in and what are your best buys to date?

I like interesting designs that work in day-to-day wear. If I can’t think of at least five different ways to wear an item I won’t purchase it anymore. I love my woven Céline Cabas that I got on Vestiaire Collective alongside a vintage Chanel jacket.

 Irina Lakicevic Streetstyle Image: Vogue

Irina Lakicevic Streetstyle Image: Vogue


What are the items in your wardrobe you can’t live without and how do you take care of them?

If I would have to pick a uniform it would be an all black look with pointy mules. I love vintage shoes so they need some love from the moment you purchase them; re-soling and cleaning is always a must.


We recently had the pleasure of restoring your Céline and a few other items at The Restory, what is it that you enjoyed most about having your pieces repaired?

 I think giving back the va-va-voom effect to something that has lost its lustre is incredible!


What was a turning point in your career and what advise would you give anyone that aspires to work in fashion?

I always ask myself how can I contribute to what is currently happening and my turning point was all about going for what makes me happy and what I enjoyed doing. Ultimately we only have one life and it’s our own responsibility to make the best out of it.


What is the vision you have for your brand and which upcoming projects are you most excited about?

MINT is currently having a facelift, which I am very excited too see how it will continue to develop in the future.

 Helmhaus Zürich / Zürcher Kunstgesellschaft (1957)  Irina Lakicevic On Max Bill In MINT Journal

Helmhaus Zürich / Zürcher Kunstgesellschaft (1957)

Irina Lakicevic On Max Bill In MINT Journal

 Irina with her Céline Tie Tote Bag

Irina with her Céline Tie Tote Bag


Kaleidoscope Exposé: Alexandra Donaldson on Frieze

Emily John
 Salon 94, Frieze London 2017 Photo: Mark Blower Courtesy: Frieze

Salon 94, Frieze London 2017 Photo: Mark Blower Courtesy: Frieze

Meet Alex Donaldson, founder of art consultancy Kaleidoscope and our very own Frieze insider. Having worked for global art businesses, Alex has extensive experience in building art collections with corporate firms, luxury brands and private collectors. And with her own platform Kaleidoscope, she provides a bespoke service to connect emerging contemporary artists with collectors who are keen to intelligently expand their collection while fostering young talent. With impressive consulting expertise and a history in curating cultural programmes for the likes of Soho House and London Design Festival, Alex is your go to for what’s hot and what’s not this Frieze art fair. Here, she gives us the scoop on the contemporary art circus that is Frieze week.

 Kaleidoscope Founder Alexandra Donaldson

Kaleidoscope Founder Alexandra Donaldson

Frieze art fair brings together over 160 of the world's leading galleries showing iconic and emerging art from contemporary artists of today. With its robust sales and top-notch roster of galleries it’s easy to see how London’s creative curiosity is piqued by this colossal contemporary art affair.

Kaleidoscope advises clients on the best that Frieze has to offer, so here's a little breakdown of what’s hot this time around. This year's edition has a dedicated section around the theme of “social work”. It’s a development from the hugely successful Sex Works theme last year, which focused on radical feminists. This time, a panel of female art historians and critics are choosing a cluster of 10 prominent women artists who explore the themes of identity, labour and visibility and neatly slipped under the radar of recognition during the 1980s when male artists dominated the market. The gender discrepancies are hard to ignore, with the highest price for a living female work of art being by Yayoi Kusama at $7.1million and for a male artist being Jeff Koons at $58.4 million. This year’s fair could be seen as a collective response to the hard-hitting fact that 70% of all artists shown are men, so the scales are set for a balancing act.

Aside from the expected string of blue-chip galleries, there is a particularly stellar line up from the younger galleries in London who have very much been rising through the ranks and gaining in confidence each year. Some star attractions include The Sunday Painter, Arcadia Missa and Seventeen Gallery who will be entering the main section after many years of being able to showcase their works in the subsidised emerging gallery section “Focus” for galleries under the age of 12 years. Rana Begum will have a solo show with Kate MacGarry coinciding with the jewel-coloured sculpture she is presenting in the Frieze Sculpture Park. Her work explores how colour, light and form interact and the laminated glasswork throws an exquisite rainbow onto the grass of Regent’s Park.


Although the line up at Frieze can be intimidating, collecting art is not only reserved for the glitterati. Starting out with creating your art collection, it can be more workable to invest in affordable art by younger artists and spaces. The ‘Focus’ section at Frieze allows up and coming artists to showcase their work at discounted rates. Milano Chow is one artist who we are particularly excited about; she shows with Mary Mary Gallery and makes elegantly eloquent drawings of female figures set within neoclassical frames.

 Left: Ronan Bouroullec drawing Right:  Portrait of a Lady  (detail)  mid-1520’s , The National Gallery

Left: Ronan Bouroullec drawing Right: Portrait of a Lady (detail) mid-1520’s, The National Gallery

 Milano Chow, ‘ Entryway (Niches)’ 2017,  Courtesy of Mary Mary Gallery

Milano Chow, ‘Entryway (Niches)’ 2017, Courtesy of Mary Mary Gallery

 Rana Begum ' No 814’ 2018,  Courtesy of Kate MacGarry Gallery

Rana Begum 'No 814’ 2018, Courtesy of Kate MacGarry Gallery

Interested in building out your own collection with inspiring work? Kaleidoscope will help you on your way! Get in touch with their team and have a snoop around the gallery to bring that ultimate piece home:

Instagram: alexlouisedonaldson

The Hair Care You Need This Autumn With Lisa Whiteman

Emily John
 Whiteman Soho at Ham Yard Village London

Whiteman Soho at Ham Yard Village London

Are those tousled locks and beachy waves starting to feel a bit tired now that you’ve returned home from holiday? Or have the sun and the salt played tricks on your hair colour? Finding a great hair salon is like finding that perfect bikini: a needle in a haystack. When we came across Lisa Whiteman from Whiteman Soho, we were both impressed by the gorgeous surroundings of her very own salon at Ham Yard Village and her expertise in everything hair and colour related. With more than 30 years of experience in hair care as well as traveling the world for Goldwell Professional, Lisa has mastered the art of hairdressing to a T. We are offering our readers an extra perk this autumn when you book a service at Whiteman Soho, so read Lisa’s interview below and you might just feel inspired to finally try out that very specific colour you’ve always had in mind!


Tell us what made you decide to pursue a career in hairdressing?

 My first ever experience with a hairdresser was when I joined my mother on her hairdressing appointment at a friend’s home on a Friday. When we arrived it was like hair heaven. About six ladies and friends having a really good laugh and with their hair being transformed into incredible Coiffed Lacquered to the max 70’s hair styles. Hilarious. I was amazed, and in awe of the hairdresser for her skill in handling a brush and rollers. Plus, I had never seen my mum and her hairdresser laugh so much. That’s when I thought at only five years old: what a great job that must be! I was in love with the industry from that day onwards.


In your three decades of hairdressing experience, what would you consider your career highlights?

It would have to be winning the Global Zoom Colour competition in Miami in 2011. The whole UK client base launched into the air cheering for me- it was a pretty special moment. It lifted my career to another level and I became part of the Goldwell Global Master team. I travelled the world training and educating cut and colour techniques to Goldwell salons and trainers.


You were also a co-owner of the Mayfair salon WebsterWhiteman, what made you decide to finally open your very own salon?

I always wanted to be able to fully make my own decisions in my own salon. I wanted a luxury brand that was warm and friendly but still very professional. Location is always key and when the lease was finished on WebsterWhiteman, I went on a mission with my property consultant to find the perfect premises. Ham Yard Village is a gorgeous location and the clients can see the fairy lights in the trees from wherever they sit in the salon. It’s a calm, creative, bright and open space. A great combination for clients and stylist to enjoy the full hair experience.

 Lisa Whiteman

Lisa Whiteman

We understand that colour is your specialty, tell us more about your colour bar and the products you use?

The reception are at Whiteman Soho is replaced by the colour bar and it exposes the colour process to the clients as they see how colour is chosen and mixed. Clients can have a top up colour here or just enjoy a coffee and chat or work from their laptops or phones. We have the full range of Goldwell colours in view for stylists to tap into their creativity and really present each client with a bespoke formula.

What is your experience working as an international hairdresser for Goldwell Professional hair care for 10 years?

Whether it was working on Goldwell Global shoots in Berlin or training the workshops in Australia,  I’ve worked with some amazing hairdressers from all over the world. All hairdressers from different countries have different creative ideas when it comes to hair and it’s a fantastic way to watch and  learn new techniques from the best of the best in the world. I have always loved travel as well so it’s the perfect way to see the world and work at the same time.


What would you say is the most demanding part of running your own business and the most fun?

The hardest part for me is making sure the team sees the vision that I have for the future. I have specific ideas about how a salon should run. Its new and exciting for me but hairdressers and clients can be set in their ways. I want to change the day to day way the salon is being run and make it more effective and less paperwork. As in any business, it’s a challenge. The most exciting part is building a new brand and creating my own education programme for my team and other Goldwell customers. I like to try new things and I get really excited about using my training skills in a positive way.


What are your go to leather accessories and how do you take care of them?

I am definitely a handbag and winter boots girl. Unfortunately, my bags usually take a bit of battering from daily use in London. My handbag has to carry everything so it’s normally a larger, designer handbag with a longer shoulder strap for practical reasons. I’m too busy to change bags regularly and if I did I’d probably leave my house or salon keys in another bag. Not a good idea.

When the winter boots season starts, I normally buy a couple early on and try to avoid eye contact with shop windows until the sales start. Otherwise I’m afraid I’d be left with ten new pairs of boots before November.


What are your expert hair care tips as the seasons change, transitioning into the colder months?

Autumn is always a time to fine tune your hair colour ready for winter. Whether it’s cooling down a summer blonde or warming up to a winter red. The sun has a massive impact on hair colour and it’s always better to avoid direct sunlight where possible. We have a fantastic new product in the salon called pure pigment additives. When mixed in with existing colours, it will enhance, cool or add a new dimension to hair colour. It’s our first winter using this product and it will certainly be amazing for the clients to see the transformation.

This seasons trends will see a deeper cooler toned Balayage, free hand technique. The trend of “showing the roots” will be replaced by a more even root to tip colour. More solid, overall colours with a slight underlying shimmer. Much more subtle than the ombré or heavily emphasised balayage technique we’ve seen during the past seasons.

 The colour bar at Whiteman Soho

The colour bar at Whiteman Soho

 Whiteman Soho interior

Whiteman Soho interior

Go back to work with a new haircut or colour this autumn! Whiteman Soho is offering The Restory readers an exclusive 15% discount on all hair care services with the code RESTORY15 when you make a booking. Offer expires 31 October 2018. Please visit to make a booking.