A firm favourite in the Liberty handbag hall thanks to her bestselling bags and accessories, Sophie Hulme has become a byword for sleek, understated style with a playful twist. With an exclusive scarf collection for Liberty now under her belt, Hulme let us in on her London studio and sources of inspiration.
Crediting London street style, the infamous Bermondsey antiques market and the archive at Angels Costumiers for ongoing inspiration, Hulme takes a light-hearted approach when choosing her signature motifs each season: "[They’re] a nice, tongue-in-cheek nod... with unexpected chip forks and bubble blower [motifs].”
For each Sophie Hulme collection, the quirky charm is a seasonal signature: “The idea behind the charms has always been to look at everyday things you don’t necessarily value and then make them in gold so you look at them in a different way.” With a fresh, playful quality that belies the clean, elegant finish of her designs, the charms stir the nostalgia we all attach to mundane objects, often without realising.
This universal appeal is something close to the core of Sophie’s design principles: “We’re not fashion-led in terms of seasons and trends, we’re much more about products you can keep forever, use in your own way and build your own wardrobe.” Resonating with something more timeless than trends, this is also a value reflected in the freedom of expression associated with London fashion, which continually inspires the designer.
As a Londoner born and raised, Hulme has been visiting Liberty all her life, and is a self-confessed “mega-fan.” “[The scarf hall] is one of the amazing parts of the building, there’s nowhere else like it for scarves, as far as I’m aware.”