Wednesday, 1 April 2015
The Mallory Connection - Alan Paine Explorer Range
Mallory and Alan Paine
We have mentioned before the connection between outfitters Alan Paine and mountaineer George Mallory (fascinating Alan Paine tidbit), and the association continues. Alan Paine owner James Hinton recently met Stephen Mallory, grandson of George. Stephen modelled clothes from Alan Paine's Explorer Range, which are inspired by the Alan Paine archive and Mallory's Everest expeditions.
Mallory took part in three expeditions to Mount Everest, the final one being his last when he and his climbing partner disappeared somewhere on the North-East ridge on 8th June 1924. His frozen body was discovered years after his disappearance in 1999. Numerous items of clothing were recovered and one such item bore the label W.F. Paine, High Street, Godalming; the shop owned by Alan Paine’s father, William Paine, and the place where William founded his knitwear business in 1907.
Let Everest Come to Tweedy
How can we not be tempted by the Explorer Range? It stands for everything we represent. My own Everest expedition may be off the agenda for the moment, but this range (sort of) allows Everest to come to Tweedy.
Gentlemen, what you see above and below is the timeless Alan Paine Cranwell Moss Stitch Shawl Collar Cardigan in super-soft Geelong wool with tweed trim and elbow patches — such a wonderfully comfortable and practical cardigan.
I performed a couple of minor expeditions to try it out. Worn with a silk scarf in my local tea rooms — cheddar cheese sandwich with onion marmalade chutney, followed by rose tea and Victoria sponge cake — it coped admirably:
I also bravely scaled a promontory on my way to the pub (I wouldn't try it walking back), and, again, the cardigan did its job well:
A very nice cardigan in all, and one for your classic wardrobe, but it is also pleasing that it arrived with its own garment bag (showing the 1924 Everest route). Why don't all sweaters come with these? So practical. The bag won't be needed much at the moment. This is one of those items of clothing that usurps everything else in your wardrobe for a while.