Our Euphemia Silk Slip from recent collection, Tender is the Night, is named after Olivia's grandmother, who also designed and made lingerie back in the 1930s in a small studio on Bond Street, London.
We are lucky to have a few of her garments, one being a gorgeous silk playsuit. We took inspiration from its design lines to create our Euphemia Silk Slip.
We wanted to acknowledge Euphemia's life and work in this collection - not only for her beautiful designs - but we were inspired by the strong independent character she was. She was born in Aberdeen, Scotland in 1909, and lived a full life during a very turbulent time in European history.
Before marrying, she made the most of the single life (like all the ladies should)- she learned cooking in Switzerland at Le Cordon Bleu, studied design under a Parisian dressmaker in London and gambled in Monte-Carlo.
In her early twenties, she met her first husband and was stationed with him, only being married a year, Austen Keen, was killed by a torpedo onboard a naval ship off the coast of Gilbratar. Heart-broken, and things didn't get easier, with the outbreak of WWII, now a widow returned to London to assist the troops, she became a WREN transporting soliders and supplies.
She later met her second husband, a cornel in the British Army, Roland, who she married in 1945 and moved to the Isle of Mull, far north of Scotland. She had five children, ran a hotel and among many other things drove around in a Rolls Royce!
Her life reads a little like a movie, and her ability to live a life pursuing her own interests, travelling as well as serving her country, and raising a family is an extraordinary feat in any era. So, here's to you, Effie, a true inspiriation!
Still from her favourite movie, Doctor Zhivago
Her favourite book, The Snow Goose by Paul Gallico (1940)