Barbour | Icon Through The Ages

From creating one of the most iconic jackets in the world, Barbour have easily made their name through the sheer quality of their products and designs. The coats have always graced their own press from celebrities to royalty. Barbour has always been adopted by everyone from all over the world but how it’s worn, that is the #barbourwayoflife. All the way from dressing the North East’s fishermen in 1894, the company has continued to evolve and innovate to lead the way for flawless garments. With practicality always in mind, we delve into the history behind the icons.

The Barbour story is one of true heritage, craftsmanship and nothing less than iconic. Interestingly, the Barbour we all know today has come a long way from when it all started in 1894. Although Barbour continues to source and design products from around the globe, Barbour’s classic wax jackets are still crafted by hand in the factory in Simonside, where it all began. Year after year, Barbour continues to adapt, innovate and conquer. However, one that has always remained the same throughout their history and future plans is their strong core values. At the heart of their production is the fact that the company is a family business. The overall aim of the company is to bring wit, grit and glamour to beautifully functional clothing. Throughout the years, the principles of their design have remained the same and this is a true testament to their success. Synonymous with the British countryside, the Barbour wax jacket is instantly recognisable and respected. By 1908, Malcolm Barbour created the very first mail order catalogue. This catalogue was a huge success and by 1917, this catalogue had generated and accounted for 75% of all of Barbour’s sales. The catalogue also became popular internationally with orders coming from Chile to Hong Kong! Throughout the years the company continued to create garments of quality and exceptional design.

Each jacket also has a story behind it, which has resonated with the wearers and ultimately as to why the jackets such as the Bedale are such icons. In 1980, Barbour produced their first short, lightweight jacket, the Bedale. Originally designed for riding, the Bedale is favoured by many Britons, from royalty to pop icons. Dame Margaret Barbour was behind the design. She set out to create a jacket with equestrian practicalities in mind, with a shorter length, relaxed fit, rear vents and the essential Nylon inner ‘drip-strip’ that provided resistance to damp from horses seeping into the jacket. The jacket has since evolved into an icon. Dame Margaret Barbour also created the Beaufort in 83′. This jacket was inspired by French shooting jackets, the Beaufort is a shorter length than traditional jackets, and carries a large rear pocket lined with wipe-clean Nylon. While older Beauforts carry the Dress Gordon tartan, the modern Beaufort is lined with the Classic Barbour tartan, which is based on the tartan sett from the Barbour family’s original home county of Ayrshire.



You Will Need:

Wax | Pan/Bowl | Hot Water | Sponge | Hairdryer (optional)

Step 1 | Clean your jacket…

Clean the jacket using cold water and a sponge to wipe down the outside of the jacket. Avoid using hot water, any kind of soap and NEVER put the jacket in the washing machine, as this will remove the wax coating permanently and the jacket cannot be re-waxed.

Step 2 | Soften the wax…

Take a tin of Barbour Wax Thornproof dressing. Remove the lid, stand the tin of dressing in a container of water hot enough to soften the wax. It should take approximately 20 minutes to melt the wax into a liquid consistency.

Step 3 | Wax your jacket…

Using an old cloth or sponge, work the melted wax well into the jacket paying particular attention to seams, creases and dry patches. Wipe off any excess wax. You should keep the wax tin in the hot water while working in order to keep the wax softened. If the wax begins to harden top the container with more hot water. Ensure you keep the wax away from the corduroy collar, the inside of the jacket and inside of the pockets.

Step 4 | Dry your jacket…

To ensure you get an extra smooth finish on your re-waxing, blow over the jacket with a hair dryer to even the spread of wax. Remember not to do this too closely, as it may heat up the wax too much, causing it to run.

Step 5 | Re-wax your jacket once a year…

Once you’ve re-waxed the jacket, hang it up. Allow to dry overnight in a warm place away from other garments. Be aware the jacket may lose excess wax for a short while so take care not to get your newly waxed jacket near leather or upholstery.

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