Tom Dixon Studio
The creative teams from both Bute Fabrics and Tom Dixon have been working closely over the past 2 years on an exciting new collaboration: a range of contemporary textural fabrics in signature Tom Dixon hues, launching over the course of this coming year.
Prior to the upcoming collections, Tom produced several unique colourways for our ‘Storr’ collection, which remains a firm customer favourite to this day. This relationship has continued over the years and we have been eagerly awaiting the right opportunity to work together once again.
Over the past 2 years we have collaborated closely with Tom Dixon Studio to develop their very first textile ranges, under the Tom Dixon name, for use on their beautiful furniture, in addition, offering the fabrics by the metre to be specified in projects worldwide.
We originally invited the Tom Dixon team to our mill on the isle of Bute to explore the Bute Fabrics archive and the island landscape – the assets from this visit were used to create a design concept and story for the various ranges. In essence both companies wanted to create beautiful, unique fabrics with a high technical specification and an environmental consciousness.
The results of this exciting collaboration are discussed below with Tom Dixon Studio:
The reason for creating the new collection . . .
Bute Fabrics are known in the fashion and textile industries for their high-end luxury fabrics, which are handmade at their mill on the Isle of Bute. With a mutual respect for quality, craftsmanship and the environment, Tom Dixon Studio were excited to work with a fabric house that share similar design principles, as well as being experts in their field. The community aspect was also an important part of the collaboration; Designed and handmade in Scotland, Tom Dixon Studio wanted to partner with neighbours and celebrate, as well as support the rich heritage of Britain. Bute’s approach to sustainability and use of recycled yarns in the production of their wools was also key to the partnership and the development of the collection.
Where did you go to find inspiration?
The Micro Boucle and Denim collections were inspired by the textures and hues of Isle of Bute’s landscape. The earthy colours and intricate patterns found in moss, seaweed, shells, pebbles, trees and sand were a source of inspiration and are reflected in the collections. The range includes a smooth Boucle fabric and a workwear inspired denim adapted for timeless upholstery.
Tell us about the story behind the colour story for these new fabrics:
Micro Boucle is a textured wool-silk nep with contrasting flecks. The speckles add an element of tactility and depth to the fabric. Isle of Bute’s pallet of greens, greys, browns and blues, as well as the intricacies and details of the terrain are evident in the Micro Boucle collection. Denim is a heavy-duty cotton and wool blend twill, which has a unique aesthetic. Bute are known for their durable fabrics and Tom Dixon Studio wanted to create a robust material that could be specified into Design Research Studio’s architectural and hospitality projects around the world.
Tell us about the unique characteristics of these collections . . .
The narrative of two intrinsically British companies working together is important. The quality of the craftsmanship and the appreciation for detail in the design and manufacturing process has resulted in a collection of fabrics that are distinctive, practical and beautiful.
It’s a unique collaboration between a contemporary design brand (Tom Dixon Studio) and a traditional textile design house (Bute). Tom Dixon began his career in the 80’s as an untrained designer with a line in welded salvage furniture, which is vastly different to the delicate and textural production process of textiles. The combination of Tom Dixon’s sculptural and eccentric designs with Bute’s specialist skills in the traditional art of weaving has resulted in a collection that captures the best of both brands.
Mill photography by Gordon Burniston