Chiltern Street neighbours Sunspel and Casely-Hayford unite to reimagine the suit

Born on the London street the two British labels call home, a new collaborative collection combines Casely-Hayford’s tailoring expertise with Sunspel’s quest for comfort and ease

Sunspel and Casely Hayford
(Image credit: TBC)

On London’s Chiltern Street, 19 metres apart – at least according to Google Maps – you will find outposts of Sunspel and Casely-Hayford, two British labels reinterpreting heritage garments with a contemporary approach. Charlie Casely-Hayford, creative director of the latter, calls the historic Marylebone street ‘parochial’ and ‘local’, in ways more often found outside of London – residents, he notes, actually know the people they live and work beside. ‘You go into a store and recognise everyone inside.’

It lends the new collaboration between the two brands – titled simply ‘Sunspel and Casely-Hayford’ and launched this week – a feeling of both inevitability and ease, like two neighbours bumping into each other on the street. ‘I think that Chiltern Street is almost a theme of the collaboration,’ says the London-born designer. ‘Sometimes the words craft and heritage can have old-fashioned associations, but here, for something to be classic it doesn’t have to mean standing still. That’s something that Casely-Hayford and Sunspel share.’

Man in Sunspel and Casely-Hayford suit

(Image credit: Sunspel and Casely Hayford)

The collaborative collection, designed alongside Sunspel creative director David Telfer, aims to provide a ‘modern tailoring capsule’. The suit is central to Casely-Hayford’s collections – he founded the eponymous label in 2009 with late father Joe Casely-Hayford OBE, former creative director of Savile Row tailor Gieves & Hawkes – here reimagined in jersey, a fabric that has long provided the foundation for Sunspel’s own collections. Crafted from an Italian woven-cotton jersey reminiscent in texture of the brand’s signature ‘Riviera’ polo shirt, the blazers are cut to Casely-Hayford’s unstructured, boxy proportions and promise to ‘feel more like a cardigan than traditional tailoring’. 

‘It’s all about comfort and ease,’ says Casely-Hayford. ‘We were talking a lot over lockdown, and we were thinking: what does a suit look like when we come out of this? How can we make something that’s versatile enough to be able to be worn at home and feel comfortable, and then go to work and go out afterwards and not have to change?’ 

‘I think a lot of people said that the suit was going to die,’ adds Telfer. ‘But we noticed that some of our more casual, lightweight, unstructured blazers, during lockdown, were doing really well. So I think we wanted to see Charlie’s take on combining the comfort element of our jerseys with his own take on tailoring. It was an interesting time to do it, because everybody else seemed to be moving away from tailoring.’

the collaboration comprises two half-lined blazers – both navy, a colour that Telfer says ‘wouldn’t put anybody off’

(Image credit: Sunspel and Casely Hayford)

As such, the collaboration comprises two half-lined blazers – both navy, a colour that Telfer says ‘wouldn’t put anybody off’ – either single- or double-breasted, alongside two trouser shapes (both have a relaxed cut, one has a sweatpant-style elastic waist). The four-piece capsule is designed to be worn with pieces across Sunspel’s collections, whether a classic cashmere sweater or simple navy T-shirt. ‘I think because of the cut, it’s really flexible in terms of what you can wear. We’re always really keen for the people wearing Sunspel to put their own take on it.’

As for whether the two brands will collaborate again, both designers are coy. ‘We haven’t actually really talked about it,’ laughs Telfer. ‘But yes, there’s potentially an evolution of what we’ve done here. I think what I really like about collaborations is learning something new – with Charlie, it’s been exciting embracing new things. I think our customers always get excited seeing what we offer evolve.’

‘We’re both brands that believe in slow fashion,’ adds Casely-Hayford. ‘And part of that story is about never making things one-trick. I think both brands encapsulate what my old man always used to say: that the whisper is louder than the shout.’ 

Sunspel and Casely-Hayford suit jacket hanging on doorway

(Image credit: Sunspel and Casely Hayford)

 INFORMATION

sunspel.com (opens in new tab)
casely-hayford.com (opens in new tab)

Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*. Having previously held roles at 10, 10 Men and AnOther magazines, he joined the team in 2022. His work has a particular focus on the moments where fashion and style intersect with other creative disciplines – among them art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and profiling the industry’s leading figures and brands.