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Huntsman Treads the Boards

London’s Old Vic theatre celebrates its 200th anniversary this year, and to mark the bicentenary, this cultural institution is working to raise funds to preserve its sense of “creative adventure and passion,” for the next 200 years. Indeed, as an independent, not-for-profit charity, each year the theatre must raise the £3.6 million it needs to put on shows, engage young people, and keep its ticket prices accessible.

As part of this drive, several distinguished London labels have created limited edition pieces for the bicentenary, the proceeds of which will go towards The Old Vic.

And as a passionate supporter of London’s culture, Huntsman is one of those houses, having partnered with artist Gary Hume to create a limited-edition silk pocket square for The Old Vic’s anniversary collection. The piece is printed with Hume’s 1994 work “This Way,” which the artist donated the use of for the collaboration.

Fashioned in 100% silk, the pocket square’s design exemplifies Hume’s use of bold, contrasting colours, with the original created using household gloss paint on an aluminium panel. And as befits Huntsman’s attention to detail, the silk square has hand-rolled edges – meaning they’re stitched by hand – to create a drape to this very gentlemanly accessory.

Produced in a limited run of 200 pieces, the pocket squares are currently sold on The Old Vic’s website for – appropriately – £200, with the entire proceeds benefitting The Old Vic. Huntsman joins designers Bella Freud and Cassandra Goad, along with department store Fortnum & Mason in creating items to raise funds for the theatre.

And this isn’t the first time Huntsman has fused art and tailoring – the house is known for creating silk linings printed with works of art for some of its bespoke suits. Among the works that have graced the lining of Huntsman suits are René Magritte’s “Man in a Bowler Hat,” Ed Ruscha’s “Boy Meets Girl,” and Beatrice Caracciolo’s “Pine Needles.”

This time, Huntsman has transformed Hume’s unique work into a wearable piece of art – a truly stylish way of celebrating a good cause.

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