Monday, December 13, 2010

Pure romance

I love Laura Ashley. She started her business in 1953, at her kitchen table. She decided to start making quilts, but couldn't find fabric she liked, so what did she do? Invested $15 to buy some supplies, and turned it into a multi-million dollar business.

Ya gotta love it.

Her prints tend towards florals and toiles, which is perfect for the English cottage look I favor. Her clothing tends to be sweet and romantic, just like this dress pattern from 1975. I see a very real Scarlet O'Hara influence, and wonder if it really is Gone With The Wind inspired, with 1975 being the 35th anniversary of the movie.

Despite her love of ruffles and romance, Laura Ashley didn't like waste. She was probably very early on the green scene when she realized that fabric remnants were being burned, and turned the burning into a reward by offering the fabric remnants for sale - thus very nearly creating World War III whilst customers fought for the fabric. All that, from a $15 investment. Amazing.

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