Thursday, 26 May 2016

The Princess who Inspired my Cardigan Collection.

The 1950’s film star, Grace Kelly, was born in 1929 in Philadelphia and joined the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York to pursue a career in acting.  In 1956, at the age of only 26 and after appearing in just 11 films, Grace ended her movie career to become Princess Grace of Monaco and focus on her royal duties.

Easy glamour

Grace Kelly’s beautiful style was distinctive, sophisticated and utterly timeless.  She became one of the most important style icons of the 20th century.  Her understated elegance is still relevant today and it's the inspiration behind my own cashmere cardigan collection.

In 1954, Alfred Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder.

The classic cashmere cardigan formed one of her key pieces, worn either with a feminine calf skimming dress or chic Capri pants.

Grace with cardigan worn casually over her shoulders 

While cruising the Atlantic

Playing games on board ship.

For  chilly evenings.

When her baby Princess Caroline was born, of course - Princess Grace knitted her a cardigan.

The two princesses.

Here wearing a cardigan and carrying her Hermes 'Kelly' bag.

Princess Grace wearing her ubiquitous cardigan!

The Rose Cashmere Cardigan

Inspired by Grace Kelly's easy elegance - a cardigan from my new collection.

Thursday, 3 March 2016

Jan & Jo in Japan.

Konichiwa!  Hello from me and Jo in Tokyo where the weather here is sunny, cold and crisp.

We are always receive a warm welcome from Japan

With David Buckley, President of Copyrights Asia 

We’re away on a trade mission with the UKTI, flying the flag for Britain and meeting lots of Japanese contacts.  While we’re here we’re launching our ‘Top Secret’ collection and getting some great feedback. 

Traditional Kumi-daiko performance (drumming entertainment) in the British Embassy Gardens

This is the founder of Kushi Shibaten restaurant in the 1870s, great Izakaya style food that we sampled with David an Masaru in downtown Shimbashi

We sampled some lovely Sake 

 With Hisaki Shintaku as we entered Akasaka Umaya,

A Kabuki actor produced restaurant

We enjoyed our final after with Hisaki and Sho in a great traditional Japanese restaurant.
The restaurant offers interesting lunch boxes, whose menu is inspired and arranged from "catering lunch for Kabuki actor"

We enjoyed lots of wonderful fish during our trip

We find the Japanese culture so inspiring and beautiful

Farewell Tokyo, we will visit you again soon.
arigatou gozaimasu

Friday, 19 February 2016

14 Years of Milestones.

As we reach our 14th Birthday on Monday, I've pulled out a few images depicting some happy milestones since starting the business in 2002
Launching Jan Constantine at Spirit of Christmas 2002

My first Union Jack design 2004

I wrote my first book in 2008

My bestselling Pop Art Collection
Teaching sewing workshops at Liberty of London - make you own!

Throwing cushions with Lord Coe during our London 2012 phase!
Working in TV with Lawrence and Lland Michelle (editor of Elle Deco) 
Launch of 2nd book at Fornum & Mason, with Jaqui Small (Publisher) and Rosalind Howells (Buyer).

Discussions about export with HRH Prince Charles

After talking at the 'Wire Conference'

With Akiko from the British Embassy in Tokyo

And Japanese friends.

Having a laugh with Boris (Mayor of London) in Osaka, Japan in October.

Sewing in Selfridges, me, Jo and Lucy.

Today!  On the 4th floor of Selfridges - for Mothers Day.
Watch this space!
Love Jan X

Friday, 1 January 2016

2015 - My Year in Pictures

Goodbye 2015.  Snaps of the highlights and thrills of my year .....

January 2015.  Launch of my new China Collection.

February -  BAFTA  Nomination for my sister's film.  Elaine Constantine, writer and director.

March - working on new designs from beautiful  Port Isaac.

April - nominated for Cheshire Woman of the Year!

April - speaker at 'Enterprising Women' seminar for 'Management Today'

May - Speaker for UKTI at  Export Week Women in Business lunch event

June - Gained a new sister-in-law - Sylvia.

August - Sewing demo at Selfridges, London with Jo and Lucie.

August - With Mary upon Pooley Bridge at Ullswater - sadly, now washed away in the floods!

August - Concerts in my village!  Amongst others - Tom Jones and Collabro - fabulous!

The beautiful spires of Oxford - dropping daughter Camille to begin her  Creative Writing Masters Degree

October - with friends while exhibiting at Hankyu Department Store in Japan

Chatting with Boris Johnson, Mayor of London, in Osaka.

October.  Judging and presenting awards at 'The Northern Design Awards',  this year at the Titanic Hotel in Liverpool

November - Camille's first poetry book launch - 'Malkin'

November - Exhibiting at the Country Living Fair, London.

December - Happy New Year!