Cabbages & Roses was established by ex-Vogue Living journalist, Christina Strutt, in 2000. She had spotted a gap in the market for wearable fashion and lifestyle collections that would celebrate the very best of Britain. She has been described as an unlikely businesswoman but that’s why her company, like a successor to early Laura Ashley and purveyor of English eccentricity, has struck such a chord.
Season after season, Cabbages & Roses creates beautiful, limited-edition products that are generous, always comfortable and beautiful. This was the brand of all brands at her disposal that HRH The Duchess of Cambridge chose to wear in the 100th anniversary edition of British Vogue. Victoria Beckham has also been seen slumbering elegantly in Cabbages & Roses pyjamas across a double page spread in Vogue. As the story goes she loved the pair so much that she went home in a taxi still clad in the faded rose ensemble. This kind of appeal and exposure, as well as a global licence in 2012 with the Japanese company, Uniqlo, has given this tiny emporium worldwide recognition.
Characterised by fluid, oversized silhouettes and irresistible tailoring, the Cabbages & Roses clothes and exquisite interiors have always been an expression of things that are most enchanting about British life.
They have been conceived as a manifestation of halcyon days, of summers spent picnicking in the English countryside; of long winter nights curled up by a log fire with a pile of books and all the accoutrements of cosiness. Cabbages & Roses could not be further removed from the corporate world of the chain store, and yet, seemingly effortlessly, the past 19 years have seen them winning numerous accolades and a huge number of followers. Almost two decades of producing thoughtful fashion, furnishing fabrics and home accessories have helped the brand develop a cult following across Europe, North America, Korea and Japan.
Today, Christina’s daughter, Catherine, is at the operational helm of C&R. Having worked in London, Hong Kong and New York City, Catherine has witnessed first-hand how delicate is the balance between consumerism and its impact on nature.
With buying better and buying less at the forefront of its ethos, Cabbages & Roses strives to offset environmental degradation by reducing its carbon footprint whenever it can. As much as possible, its washed linen furnishing fabric is now digitally printed to order, which considerably reduces waste and unnecessary dye runoff.
C&R has returned to its roots in rural Somerset where the company’s HQ is in a Georgian priory. Within this beautiful building overlooking a charming courtyard, once the preserve of monks and nuns, the company is servicing the world online with its very British line of beauty.
More and more it finds itself deftly in line with the simpler, more sustainable sensibilities du jour, in which value, craftsmanship and a sense of the truly extraordinary are all-important. With both the clothing and lifestyle lines, Cabbages & Roses is always evolving and expanding its horizons; it has changed and adapted organically as it progresses. It will be ever thus.
CABBAGES & ROSES THE PRIORY, 9 DRAYCOTT ROAD, SOMERSET, BA4 5HS
+44 (0)20 3696 1310