Courtesy of WWD
Diana Rigg’s Scarf Designer Richard Allan Makes a Comeback
By Roxanne Robinson
As Emma Peel in “The Avengers,” actress Diana Rigg was known to rock a cat suit. But she also often sported a scarf, especially around her head, to protect her dark glossy locks while fighting crime on the go in her sporty little convertible. The scarves the 1960s British TV series star wore were designed by Richard Allan, who, though not well-known today, was a household name throughout the decade. Characterized by their bold, abstract or psychedelic designs — screen-printed in monochromes or striking colors — his hand-finished silk squares were carried by Harrods, Harvey Nichols and other major retailers in the U.K. Along with designing his own line, Allan
collaborated with Schiaparelli and Yves Saint Laurent and held distribution rights to YSL scarves in Europe.
Founded in 1962, the brand became a family business, with Allan’s daughter Cate working alongside him. And business continued strong until the early 1980s, when Allan was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease at age 52. He stopped designing in 1982. Fast forward to 2013. After returning to England from a life abroad in the States, daughter Cate revisited her father’s designs and turned them into limited-edition art prints. She hadn’t intended to revive the family firm. “When I re-launched the art prints, people weren’t wearing scarves,” she recalled. “But as I saw people wearing them more and more lately, it was a trigger to do scarves again…”
With thanks to WWD