Richard Quinn, a South London-based designer who graduated from Central Saint Martins College in 2016, has made an impact on the fashion industry.
Quinn’s designs fuse punk and couture elements, fearlessly playing with prints, colors, and silhouettes—it’s a style that’s uniquely his own and has even caught the attention of royalty. The turning point of Quinn’s career arrived at his 2018 LFW show when a surprise guest—Queen Elizabeth II herself—graced the front row. He was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Award for British Design. This annual prize is given to an emerging designer demonstrating exceptional talent, creativity, and originality as well as demonstrating value for the community. Royal Salute, a Scotch Whisky brand, was created in Speyside in Scotland in 1953 as a tribute for the Queen’s coronation. This solidified its link to history and heritage.
Quinn is a designer who has worked for brands like Tommy Hilfiger or Moncler. He also dressed celebrities to attend the Met Gala. His Peckham studio, however, offers screen-printing and workshops for emerging designers. Quinn and Royal Salute are collaborating again after a successful initial collaboration. The two companies will collaborate on three floral bottles, as well as a six-piece capsule of clothing. The new limited Royal Salute 21-Year-Old Richard Quinn Edition II, a collector’s dream with unique colorways, brings Quinn’s and Royal Salute’s personalities to life. Quinn was not only involved in the design. Sandy Hyslop is the Master Blender at Royal Salute. The artist worked with him to add his personality to the blend, furthering his connection to this collaboration. Quinn’s South London studio was the perfect place to learn more about this release.
Quinn, in casual attire, a cap, and sneakers, welcomes us and gets straight to the point, discussing the show that planted the seeds for the collaboration. “We make sure that we are able to provide the best possible service for our customers. [our shows] It’s a little escapist. All our clothes would be extra-large floral prints and big silhouettes. Quinn explains that “there’s always this kind of level where we try to create a little drama and a little of the world in how our work is presented.” Royal Salute attended the show and, taken in by Quinn’s vision, approached him afterward. They approached us to find out how we could combine the two worlds. “The idea was to combine fantasy, fashion, and heritage into one product.”
Quinn recognized, when he began designing the collection, that Royal Salute fans share a passion and love for collectibles. “Everyone I’ve met that’s really into the Royal Salute brand, they’re similar to the people that buy our clothes. They love to collect unique items.”
The goal of this collection was to create three unique bottles that are collectors’ items in their own right. “We really wanted to give the person who buys it an experience,” he continues. “The overall vision for the collection was to make it fun, engaging, and collectible. Each bottle is different in color, and each has its own personality. But they all work well together to offer the unique taste we developed.
Beyond aesthetics, this collaboration delved into the realms of taste quite literally. Royal Salute’s blends are renowned for their flavor and have a minimum of 21-year-old whisky. Quinn was actively involved in crafting the drink’s unique blend, revealing, “I’ve always drank whisky when I was out, but more as a mixer to something. This collaboration opened my eyes about drinking whisky. He continued, “You start to learn about the different flavors and notes.” This one was a special request. We really wanted it to have a unique nose. This one has a different nose with notes of banana, mango and a creamy vanilla fudge. On the palate we were looking for rich and fruity strawberry, pear and peach flavors. It has a complex, smooth finish that also includes a hint of smoke.
The floral theme of this collab links the capsule collection with the whisky bottles. Quinn explains the relationship between silhouettes, prints and mood: “I’ve always found it interesting that the shape of the garment can dictate the tone of the print. I think that the most difficult part of the collaboration was to get the prints to wrap the bottle. But once we’d had a few tries, it wasn’t really a challenge—it was actually quite fun.”
Richard Quinn, Royal Salute and their fresh blend of heritage and fashion have brought us an extraordinary taste. This is a multisensory celebration that will linger long after the last sip.
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