Buy me: John Smedley V-neck

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The Independent Culture
One of the things that has become clear over the last couple of fashion seasons is that knitwear is back and here to stay. Not that it has ever really been away, but technological leaps now mean that knitted clothes need not be heavy, thick and itchy. In fact lightweight wool or even Sea Island Cotton as John Smedley, purveyors of the finest knits in the country, call theirs, can now be worked into underwear, skinny tops, and lightweight spring jumpers.

What's more, if the quality wasn't enough, (which it is), the company's history and clientele is something to be proud of too. Founded during the industrial revolution, and still based at their original factory site in Matlock, Derbyshire, each jumper is still made to very exacting standards and then hand-checked for faults before being shipped out to clients all over the world who include British-based designers such as Sonja Nuttall and Antonio Berardi.

Tonight the company is expected to win in the knitwear category of The British Apparel Export Awards, thanks to their outstanding worldwide sales. Luckily John Smedley is still a truly British brand, and this summer their Sea Island Cotton v-neck jumpers will be a must-have basic for women who appreciate style across the land.

Merino wool v-neck, pounds 78, for stockist enquiries call: 0171 580 5075. Spring/Summer stock will be delivered next month.

Melanie Rickey