The story of William Hunt, much like the designs that populate his tailor’s shop at 41 Savile Row, is anything but conventional.
William Hunt was born in 1960 in Swinton, Manchester. He was raised in Whitefield before becoming a professional footballer at the age of 18. But the training ground was not Hunt’s true calling – he was captivated by Manchester’s music scene, Northern Soul, engineering and architecture – and in the 1970s he went back to the drawing board.
His interests led him to the clothing industry. Success came swiftly: his personal style marked him out from the crowd and caught the attention of the owner of the D Mob store, and led William Hunt to his first commercial deal.
Later on, Hunt opened his first store on the King’s Road in Chelsea, moving to the up-and-coming Neal St in Covent Garden before finally landing in 1998 on the world-famous Savile Row.
There are two key sides to London’s most renowned row: the traditional tailors looking to preserve and perfect the designs of the past, and the non-conformist brands looking to break away from the old. The idiosyncratic William Hunt, however, grew a cult following for occupying a space all of its own.
The idiosyncratic William Hunt grew a cult following for occupying a space all of its own
Its colourful, masculine designs are inspired by the old-school Hollywood glamour before being shaped into a modern, tailored cut. The result is a strong contemporary silhouette perfect for powerful men who like their suits to match their personality.
In 2007, Manchester United players walked out onto the pitch at the new Wembley Stadium before the FA Cup final dressed by William Hunt. The SB navy wool suits with peak lapels were designed by Hunt and handmade at the BMB suit factory in Goole, east Yorkshire. It was a cyclical moment: returning to the sport and town he loved as a child, now as a respected tailor.
Unlike many brands which are headed by designers that change every season, the suits you see at William Hunt are all designed by the eponymous tailor – and see his ‘bold is beautiful’ vision come to fruition.
Yes, William Hunt is a little more 'out there' than your average Savile Row brand. But we wouldn’t have it any other way.
For more information, see williamhunt.co.uk