The history of Burberry, some of our favourite brand moments

Iphone at burberry's ss14 show

How has this British garment maker Burberry, gone on to become one of the world’s most inspiring luxury brands? The story of the label shows us that innovation has always been core to Burberry’s phenomenal success. Read our brief history of Burberry to uncover some fascinating facts about this iconic fashion label.

Back in 1856 Thomas Burberry, a draper’s apprentice, started experimenting with an innovative new material. By waterproofing the fabric’s threads prior to the weave, Burberry was able to create durable wet-weather gabardine coats to a standard which had never been seen before.

In 1891 Burberry opens its first flagship store in Haymarket, it is still open for customers to enjoy today.

Thomas Burberry adds shoulder straps and metal D-rings to his gabardine coat for British soldiers, the world’s first trench coat is born.

In 1901, the Burberry Equestrian Knight Logo was created. It contained the Latin word “Prorsum” which means forward. This motto mirrors Burberry’s collaborations with some of the world’s most notable explorers, including Ernest Shackleton.

In 1990 Artistic Director Roberto Menichetti re-works the classic 30’s trench coat and turns this Burberry staple into an iconic fashion piece.

In the late 90s celebrities start to embrace Burberry’s heritage look. Maddona and Victoria Beckham are spotted sporting Burberry, boosting the brand’s mass appeal.

In 1999 the first Burberry collection for children is made available.

In May 2001, Christopher Bailey joined Burberry as creative director. He is largely credited with laying the foundations for Burberry’s future success.

Despite the global financial crisis Burberry returns a 25% increase in profits during 2008, cementing its place as one of the world’s top five luxury brands.

Burberry steals the show at London Fashion Week in 2010, with rave reviews from the press. Historically, the shows were live streamed on the internet, finally bridging the gap between the public and the private world of catwalk fashion.

In 2011 Burberry made 13th place on Fast Company’s list of the world’s most innovative companies.

Model Cara Delevingne rockets to international stardom after landing a two year gig as the face of Burberry in 2011.


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