Dressing gowns, understandably, have received much more air time than is perhaps normal this year. In the hands of indulgent menswear brands, the house coat or robe (whatever you care to call it) has enjoyed a new lease on life in 2020 thanks to our collective locked-down existence.
There may be no brand that takes dressing gowns more seriously than New & Lingwood. The quirkiest of English gentleman’s outfitters, headquartered in Eton (a leafy town that’s home to the famous school) and on London’s Jermyn Street, N&L has been hand-making sumptuous silk robes in the UK for decades.
They’ve become something of a house signature, not least because of New & Lingwood’s confident styling and the quality of its materials. Whether plush Italian velvet or satisfyingly heavyweight silk jacquard, woven at a centuries-old mill in the east of England, New & Lingwood’s robes are the last word in lounge-at-home luxury.
Now, the house has taken its dressing gowns to a decadent new height. For the first time, customers can order made-to-measure silk robes that are fully customizable, both in terms of design and measurements, through a new, pretty swish online tool. Said tool takes clients through four simple steps to create a one-of-a-kind gown, that is then made-to-order at the brand’s dedicated Nottingham workshop.
You’ll start by choosing whether you’d like your gown lined or unlined (unlined is better for warmer climates, obviously) before going on to choose the silk you’d like, the lining and the finish of the gown’s lapels and turn-back cuffs (quilted velvet or un-quilted silk, for example), as well as determining your perfect size and measurements. The gown’s length and sleeves can both be shortened or lengthened for a perfect fit—a blessing for anyone who’s not perfect model size.
“Some of our best creations have come from conversations with our customers, many of whom are the world’s most creative people,” says New & Lingwood’s CEO, Freddie Briance. “These customers have always seized the unconventional and enjoyed respectfully pushing boundaries. We developed this service with these customers in mind, to offer a new way for them to express their personal style.”
In addition to the fun of letting you unleash your creativity in one of the most decadent ways possible, it’s also a unique experience to piece together your dream silk and/or velvet Snuggie online—not something that can be said of many digital customization tools. The experience is simple, straightforward and nicely illustrated—“clean” as UX experts would say—and it does feel like something of an event. Of course, it’s not quite the same as being fussed over in a tailor’s shop, but for international customers it’s the next best thing.
New & Lingwood’s custom-made dressing gowns take between four and six weeks to make and ship. So, while you might not quite have one to give or receive in time for Christmas, you can nonetheless lounge into the new year safe in the knowledge that no one else will be wearing quite the same thing.