Details: Cawley Studio Spring Summer Collection 2023

The best of British craftsmanship in a vintage-inspired collection

Victorian bloomers. Once a radical choice for young women, swapping exaggerated silhouettes for a more functional style, today the vintage underwear is an avant-garde fashion statement. Inspired by utilitarian timelessness and British craftsmanship, Cawley Studio’s Spring Summer 2023 collection offers a romantic and whimsical visual language. The Maria Silk Bloomers are one such design from the capsule that embraces Victorian silhouettes for a classic look that celebrates the feminine and the functional.

Ironically, the collection defies seasonal style, offering consistent pieces that will see you through the year. On the new summer designs, founder Hannah Cawley says, ‘The collections are made to be timeless; I don’t think a seasonal concept works for my brand or the way I design.’ 

Founded in 2017, Cawley Studio individually hand cuts and crafts its designs in the label’s London atelier and uses high-quality, natural fabrics such as cotton, linen and wool, carefully sourced from traditional mills. 

Using striped Irish-laundered linen, the Elba dress is a signature style that has been with the British brand from its very first collection. Its beautifully breezy material is mindfully chosen to keep the summer months cool and the winter months warm. The easy-gathered waist style can be simply layered over shirts and jumpers, an example of the brand’s cross-seasonal ethos. 

While the ready-to-wear collection promises elegant simplicity, Cawley Studio also offers modern tailoring in its made-to-order designs. Participating in the slow fashion revolution, the label’s pieces are a testament to the history of quality dressmaking. The made-to-order Sophie shirt in a classic, striped cotton poplin, for example, is reminiscent of Shakespearean heroes with its front ruffles and pin hem cuffs, not to mention corozo buttons in the brand’s effort to be plastic-free. 

Hannah Cawley’s first experience of made-to-order fashion arrived via the medium of dance. ‘From the age of four to about 16 I was a dancer at a local ballet school where one seamstress made the entire school’s costumes. We would get measured, have fittings a few weeks later and by the time of the show, we would have a garment that was made to measure,’ Cawley says, ‘I really liked that process, seeing how measurements could be translated into a finished garment.’

It is perhaps Cawley’s musicality that makes her designs full of movement. The billowing shirts and sweeping shift dresses dance with the everyday to create a lightness that (dare I say it) seems made for summertime.


Bryony Smith is a London-based writer 

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