John Smedley & Textile Tales

John Smedley

We are creators of the World’s Finest Knitwear. From our home in Derbyshire we have designed and produced innovative fine gauge, knitwear of the highest quality for over 235 years. Combining traditional techniques with the latest technology to produce luxurious, stylish and contemporary garments, the John Smedley brand is known the world over.

We are proud owners of a Royal Warrant, which affirms the care and skill that goes into every garment and reflects experience handed down from generation to generation.

In 2019, we are celebrating 235 years of our British craftsmanship with a year-long campaign, working with innovative, young craftsman and women, who are involved with the Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust and who represent crafts such as furniture-making, ceramics and beekeeping. We are also celebrating the fact that John Smedley is a family company – our shareholders trace their lineage back to the first John Smedley at the very beginning of the industrial revolution.



The Archive Project and Textile Tales

John Smedley is proud of its long history and in 2009, launched an archive initiative to conserve and celebrate its heritage. The John Smedley Archive Charitable Trust has now been created to catalogue and care for the huge collection of garments and artefacts associated with knitwear manufacture. It is rapidly becoming a go-to centre for research into knitted textiles and is recording and preserving the crafts associated with the manufacture of traditional knitwear.

Working with partners on the ‘Textile Tales’ Project is a perfect example of how the Trust is conserving and curating the story of the knitwear industry in the East Midlands. The changes that took place from the 1980’s onwards have been poorly recorded and this initiative offers an opportunity to collect and preserve that story for the future – from the individuals who were intimately involved.