The company credited with reviving the Harris Tweed industry will be given a tenth
birthday salute at the prestigious Scottish Style Awards this weekend at the Kelvingrove
Art Gallery in Glasgow.
It will be the first in a series of events to mark ten years of Harris Tweed Hebrides
which took over a derelict mill at Shawbost when the industry was at its lowest ebb
and now gives employment to around 250 mill-workers and weavers in Lewis and Harris.
Mary McGowne, organiser of the Scottish Style Awards, said: “Everyone in the fashion
and textiles industries admires the exciting and remarkable success of Harris Tweed
Hebrides. On their tenth birthday, it’s only right to recognise it with a special
show which gives a taste of what has been achieved with the fabric.”
Over the decade, Harris Tweed Hebrides has won numerous awards for both the quality
of its product and for exporting. Around two thirds of output goes overseas with
Japan, Germany, Italy and North America as the biggest markets.
Chief executive Ian A Mackenzie said: “Every client is important to us but it is
crucial to the status of the fabric that we continue to work with top-end clients
who add to the richness and diversity of Harris Tweed’s reputation.”
Ian Angus has led the company from its inception along with principal investor, Ian
Taylor, and former UK Trade Minister and HTH chairman, Brian Wilson, who said: “It
has been a great journey and a credit to everyone involved. The age profile of weavers
and mill-workers has been transformed, new markets opened up and Harris Tweed now
has a great future as well as a glorious past.”
To mark the anniversary, Glasgow company BLK29 was commissioned to create a film
and photography collection which reflects the complexity of the Harris Tweed process
and the Outer Hebridean landscape which inspires it.
The Scottish Style Awards show, styled by creative director Mark Hogarth, will include
designs by the award-winning Holly Fulton, Nigel Cabourn and Walker Slater.