Introducing 1866 CLASSICS, a curated collection of quintessential Magee 1866 styles.
This core collection highlights our star pieces, pieces we have perfected and really can’t improve on. Each piece has been designed and made with longevity in mind.
A smart navy wool suit, crisp white cotton twill shirt, a Donegal tweed cap, a handwoven tweed jacket and long Donegal tweed coats for men; preppy hacking style tweed jackets, Donegal tweed coats and luxurious scarves and pashminas for women. Timeless design that’s impactful season after season.
As a fifth-generation family business, with over 150 years’ experience in designing, weaving and tailoring, we have refined this collection over the years. Inspired by our heritage, these staples are designed for everyday – classic shapes, premium quality, functional and uncompromising in aesthetics. These are styles that will endure for years, pieces that will always have a home in your wardrobe.
We have always been about ‘slow fashion’, it’s in our DNA. The finest of natural fibre yarns like wool and linen, which are biodegradable and renewable, are used to produce our sustainable fabrics and garments.
The collection will evolve, colours and even some new styles may be included, but at its core, this is a collection of pieces that are to be worn, treasured and in fashion next season and beyond.
Casual Luxe by Magee 1866 is a response to the needs and lifestyle changes of modern-day life. This capsule collection, influenced by weekends on the West Coast of Ireland, is made up of high-quality jersey basics and designed to be worn on their own or layered.
With a colour palette taken directly from the Magee 1866 brand, these pieces are adaptable for lots of weekend activities; from walking on the beach to long, lazy brunches with friends. Key finishing touches include fabrics woven by us in Donegal in our unique 1866 branding, making it a truly original collection.
These on-trend pieces are a seamless blend of luxury and casual, low maintenance and comfort, sophistication and simplicity. Our sustainable message is continued through the use of organic cottons and locally sourced linens. This is a collection to enjoy life’s simple pleasures and each piece is designed with longevity in mind.
One of our favourite pieces in the collection is the Navy Malin 1866 Full Zip Sweat featuring a relaxed fit and contemporary Donegal Tweed herringbone ‘1866’ applique. Mix and match with other pieces in the collection and style with casual chinos for the ultimate weekend look.
The use of houndstooth’s baby brother ‘puppytooth’ is a nod to our weaving heritage. The navy and grey micro pattern of the Puppytooth Malin Full Zip Sweat and Seahill Crew Neck Jumper, adds a twist to classic styles. Both pieces are designed to be layered over a t-shirt from the collection or a casual linen shirt for off-duty comfort without compromising on style.
The colour pink can be romantic and beautiful but also bright and vivacious. Its adaptability is just one of the reasons we love to incorporate pink into our cloths and collections.
This season we celebrate the full spectrum of the colour – from the hot and brave pinks with riotous colour bursts reminiscent of the joyful Holi Festival of Colour (and the addictive Candy Crush game), to the relaxed and delicate blush tones that evoke a tranquil vibe powerfully rooted in the authenticity and assurance of nature.
The Subtle Pink Twist
The Grace coat has returned with a luxury multicoloured twist. The exaggerated cotton, wool and silk blend sharkskin weave, features dusky pinks, aqua and sea blues and off-white chunky yarns, interwoven with contemporary gold and silver lurex for a little bit of dazzle!
The Hot Pink
Our hot pink Lily Donegal Tweed jacket provides a luxurious burst of colour to any outfit. The lightweight tweed, designed and woven at our mill by our skilled weavers, is dappled with flecks of teal and purple. The jacket’s princess seams, peak lapel and a cut-away front give it a flattering, feminine appearance without sacrificing on comfort.
Soft pastel colours of violet, ochre and aqua are contrasted against a soft pink base in a wonderfully ornate Liberty Kew garden’s floral print on our Tracy tailored fit shirt. Designed and drawn in the Liberty of London Fabrics studio in a fine line style, this print offers a dreamy and delicate interpretation of Kew Gardens’ tropical flora. Liberty of London Tana Lawn Cotton’s distinctive hand-feel and translucent softness make it a versatile favourite.
Picks for Him
A summery blend of cotton, silk and linen perfectly showcase the dusky pink check in this classic fit Liffey jacket. Designed and woven in Ireland, this opulent fabric blend is light and airy. Styled with a crisp white Irish linen shirt and chinos, this jacket is an ideal way to introduce some colour into your summer wardrobe.
If you’re still a little shy of colour, a great way to dip your toe in, is with knitwear. Styled under jackets or over shirts, a pop of pink, like our Carn Cotton ¼ Zip Jumper, elevates an outfit while keeping you comfortable and warm.
Pink in our Home and Accessory Collections
Another reason we love pink is because it reminds us of home. This time of year, the roses in Salthill’s garden (Mum’s) are in full bloom and provide endless inspiration for our accessory collection.
Pale pink checks and herringbones in the softest blends of wool, cashmere and alpaca, woven in Donegal by us bring a touch of luxury to your interiors.
Green is the colour that best describes Ireland – the green Shamrock is an internationally renowned symbol for our beautiful country and we are known for our rolling green fields of varying shades.
Summer in Ireland captures our ‘green label’ at its best. Our fields and hedgerows, leafy green trees and mossy banks. Take a moment to close your eyes and image the smell of freshly cut grass and listen to the soft sound of rustling leaves in a summer breeze.
Here in Donegal, we are especially fortunate to be surrounded by such a rich and unique landscape. Yes, North-West Ireland does have its summer showers! However without an ‘Irish summer’ we would not have this lush environment of ever-changing colours and seasons. These natural colours have been part of the inspiration for our luxury Donegal fabrics for over the past 150 years.
We continue to be motivated by our surroundings and it’s no surprise that because of this, the colour green features regularly in our collections.
With a base of soft mossy green, delicately crossed with dark olive, soft coral and bubble-gum pink, The Georgie Nehru neck waistcoat and Lily Country Check Tweed Jacket bring a pretty, feminine slant on a traditional micro-windowpane design. This soft lambswool cloth is designed and woven by us in Donegal. Perfect summer tweeds!
The cloth for our 100% Pure New Wool Carey skirt was designed and woven at our mill in Donegal, teaming sage and olive greens with highlights of denim, sky blue, golden oat and magenta in a traditional check. It is easy to see how this versatile piece has become a firm favourite in the Magee 1866 Women’s Collection. Style with our Linsfort coat – a great outfit for autumn racing.
Just as in nature, in weaving, green is the perfect base with which to compliment bright or bold colours like the mauve, gold and claret red featured in our Green Herringbone Donegal Tweed Flat Cap. But green can also stand firmly alone, our Green Salt & Pepper Handwoven Donegal Tweed Classic Fit Jacket epitomises the heritage of and landscape surrounding our mill in Donegal. This green salt & pepper tweed is handwoven by us in Donegal. A Magee 1866 handwoven blazer is a must for your wardrobe! Style with chinos and a linen shirt for a timeless look.
You can always bring the outdoors in by adding a little green to your interiors. A soft green evokes a sense of calm. With a luxurious blend of lambswool and cashmere and a duck down filling, you can imagine snuggling up on the sofa on our Green Herringbone cushion, under a lambswool throw watching the summer showers pass. Our throws are made in Ireland.
Oatmeal – perhaps not a traditional name for a colour but preferable to beige! I have recently started to love to wear this colour – a quiet, natural tone which can be beautiful on its own or great with sky blues and khaki greens. It comes in a variety of tones but generally pale with hints or yellow, cream, grey with soft green undertones. It is a perfect summer colour – best found in linens, wools and silks.
Oatmeal is a colour very much inspired by nature.
The Eske Cape (lambswool) – a creamy oat works amazingly with blue – this season we have combined these natural colours to create a classic oat crossed with a contemporary sky blue stripe. These beautiful capes are designed, woven and made by us in Donegal. We love this Alicia patch pocket linen blazer featuring a golden oat and blue nautical stripe.
Colour is at the heart of what we do at Magee 1866, in the 1960’s our mill started to focus on more colourful fabrics, moving away from the functional, hardwearing tweeds which sometimes lacked colour into more design lead cloths, inspired by our surrounding land and seascape. The ‘true Donegal tweed’ is a salt and pepper which is speckled with bright colours – gorse yellows, sea blues, sky greys, mossy greens, fuchsia pinks and leafy reds and oranges.
Blue is one of my favourite colours and a seasonal classic – summer or winter and a colour that works across men’s, women’s and home accessories. We take much of our inspiration from nature and in Donegal we are surrounded by blues – the sea, the sky (albeit often grey!), flowers and our landscape. The mountains near Donegal town are aptly named the Bluestack mountains.
We use blue across many pieces from the more formal to casual. It is an easy colour to wear and has such an amazing colour palette from classic navies to mid-denim to pale blues. I love this herringbone mid-blue Emma coat – with a soft creamy white contrast.
Blue is a beautiful colour to incorporate into your home, on its own in varying shades or mixed with oats, greys or creams.
Magee 1866 are proud to champion sustainability as a fundamental part of our ethos which has evolved over the last 150 years. Our Magee Weaving Mill pre-dominantly uses natural fibres like wool and linen, which are biodegradable, renewable and the high-quality fabric is then manufactured locally. Quality is our principle product value and is evident from our fabric to finished garment. Magee Clothing’s design philosophy promotes the sustainable concept of ‘slow fashion’ through timeless and classic collections. Sustainable fabric and high quality, long lasting products define our brand DNA. We are currently in the process of understanding which of the various environmental and sustainability certificates best align with this company ethos.
It is a 5th generation family business and the Temple family behind Magee 1866 are committed to manufacturing in the most sustainable and environmentally friendly way possible. The Temple family have planted over 150 acres of forestry to off-set carbon emissions, grow their own organic vegetables & breed a small herd of their own organic grass-fed cattle.
We focus on weaving and producing garments using ‘Noble Natural Fibres’:
Wool: biodegradable & renewable. It is sourced by our trusted spinning partners within the E.U. Countries of origin include: Ireland, Norway, Peru, Australia, New Zealand. We are working on specific projects with complete traceability of wool to the farm source. A collection using Irish Wool will launch in AW 2020.
Linen: biodegradable & renewable. Our Irish Linen is grown in Northern France, spun in Poland and designed, woven & finished in Donegal. Linen also uses considerably less water than cotton and grows on poor land.
We also work with alpaca, cashmere, mohair and silk. All are biodegradable & renewable.
We do on occasion use a small % of man-made fibres in our fabrics in order to enhance performance (e.g. stretch, added design).
All fabric is tested by third parties ICQ and Intertech to industry standards.
Warping, weaving, and finishing of fabric is done in house, allowing for complete control and high standards ensured at all times.
Within Magee Weaving, synthetic dyes are used to cater for a large colour palette. Reactive and acid dyes used on our fibres comply with EU standards. Please note that natural dye alternatives require heavy metals to adhere to the fibre, which can be as harmful to the environment. We conclude that natural dyes are not necessarily a better alternative.
Mild detergents are used, similar to those of domestic washing machine concentrations.
Cardboard waste is re-cycled. We are researching recycled fibre merchants.
Spring summer 2020, a focus on natural linens, wool and cashmere.
Magee 1866 purchases electricity from a Green energy provider (i.e. Hydro or wind), currently coming from the mainstream grid.
Oil is used to generate heat in the absence of any other alternatives in our geographical region e.g. there is no natural gas pipe line Co. Donegal. Alternatives to fossil fuels are being urgently sought, costed and plans drawn to invest in solar power within the next 3 years.
Local water is used in our production of cloth. Due to the fact that Donegal has a high volume and frequency of rainfall, (1600mm p.a.), this resource is not under pressure from a shortage.
Our latest collection is inspired by coastal escapes, both here in Ireland and abroad.
In the northwest of Ireland, summer months offer plenty of opportunities for long walks on the beach and weekend days spent sailing along the wild Atlantic coastline. However beautiful Ireland is, we are not always guaranteed with predictable sunny summer weather! A week in France or Spain in bright sunshine is often a welcome escape.
The new Spring Summer 2020 men’s collection is inspired by the idea of a beach in Europe, enjoying the spring and summer season to its fullest along the coast, heading abroad to weddings, and spending quiet weekends at home.
Relaxed palettes of slate blue, duck egg, sage green and earthy brown across the collection are invigorated by bold accents of medallion yellow, azure, gold and peach. Texture is key for this season, with natural luxury fabrics like washed linen and slubbed silk forming the basis for the collection. Linen is a favourite for spring and summer, as its truly sustainable, requiring less water and land to create.
has a mixed reaction due to its tendency to crease but is a truly sustainable product (uses less water to grow, less land required to grow flax and it can be processed without chemicals) and we should embrace it! Irish linen is world renowned and this collection features this beautiful fabric in shirts, jackets, trousers and suits.
Magee 1866 have been designing and weaving fabric at their mill in County Donegal for over 150 years, and this season’s clothing collection brings these fabrics to life with smart, long-lasting and timeless design.
Hero pieces for men include casual colour-blocked knits with a Donegal fleck, and linen drawstring trousers, which can be paired with a linen jacket for the ultimate summer wedding suit. All-new pieces include 1866-branded sweatshirts and T-shirts, with genuine Donegal Tweed detailing. We have also stayed true to our 150 years of heritage with luxury lightweight wool blazers, tweed suits and a Cavan gilet in handwoven Donegal Tweed.
Our men’s designer, Fenella, names the handwoven Cavan gilet as one of her favourite pieces for the season: “This indulgent merlot-coloured herringbone is packed full of lavender, olive, rust, cobalt & mustard flecks. This season, we’ve introduced this special cloth into our popular Cavan Gilet design – a smart, functional & simple piece of versatile outerwear, which perfectly showcases the beauty in our own Weaving fabrics.”
Wool is the backbone of our weaving mill in Donegal, and an all-year round product certainly for the Irish and UK summers. SS20 highlights include our handwoven jackets and gilets, and women’s lightweight wool jackets.
For women, this season’s collection puts an emphasis on sustainable luxury wool, cashmere and cotton fibres. It gives a knowing nod to the reappearance of 1970’s styling with exaggerated silhouettes, bold plain linens, and hints of glamourous glittering lurex.
Hero pieces include the Emma coat in an exaggerated dusky pink and cream herringbone, made of luxuriously soft wool cashmere. The timeless Grace coat, with close-fitting princess seams and a flared waist, returns in eye-catching azure blue. The cropped Sadie jacket in navy and white silk is dappled with colours of orange, lemon, lime and pink.
Each piece is designed and made with longevity in mind. Our main office and Weaving mill is based in Donegal, a beautiful part of the world, with rugged land and seascapes. We are all now increasingly aware of the damage we are doing to our natural surroundings, particularly in the clothing trade (the second biggest pollutant in the world after oil!). We all know we need to act fast for the future of our planet.
As a company, Magee 1866 have always focused on natural fibres, high quality fabrics and product, all made to stand the test of time. This ethos was part of our DNA long before the global drive to be more sustainable, through company practices and the natural qualities of our collection pieces. We are continually reviewing how we can improve our approach.
Magee 1866’s Spring/Summer2020 collection puts a focus on luxury fabrics designed and woven in Donegal.
My early memories of Magee as a child were built around what Dad wore as he left for the office at exactly 0750 every morning – namely a navy suit with a brightly coloured tie. (While Dad has never worked directly in our design departments, he has always had a natural flare for colour and styling!) The upstairs wardrobe was full of soft earthy brown and green houndstooth jackets with the odd thornproof suit in a moss green with a fine red thread running through (great for dressing up in as a child!). My brother and I also acquired a bright green linen/silk bolt that we used for ‘tent’s and ‘hide-outs’ in the woods at home. Probably not the final end use desired by the Weaving designer at the time but perfect for us – 65m went a long way for these structures.
Our fabrics and garments have evolved over the years, but the core message of quality and producing a timeless product has always been at the heart of what we do. We focus on natural fibres – wool, alpaca, cashmere, linen and silk. Traditionally Magee 1866 concentrated on jacket and suits, I joined the business in 2012 and while I have no formal training in design, I have been steeped in our brand since a child and love and believe in the the idea of taking a clothing brand and building a lifestyle around it. This is what we are striving to do and use our amazing fabrics as much as possible in these collections.
The Magee 1866 fabrics would have been originally all handwoven and their function was not fashion but utility. In the 1960’s two leading Irish designers – Sybill Connelly and Irene Gilbert started to use our Donegal tweed in the women’s collection. We have always been renowned for our brightly coloured and intricately designed apparel fabrics. In 2018 we launched our first interiors collection.
While we do buy from other mills, particularly in suiting – the UK and Italy, this vertical approach from mill to finished garment allows us to develop truly unique fabrics for our product collections.
Each season we are working to subtly push the boundaries, combining the best of Donegal cloths with contemporary styling – AW19 the Duffle and Alexa coat, while still retaining our more classic pieces. A tricky balance! The Autumn Winter season is so strong for us, colours are rich with earthy tones and our natural cloths really come into their own.
Trends are evolving all the time and the casual direction the world is moving is very prevalent – I still believe there will always be room for a smartly tailored suit, so much so we have just launched an extensive made to measure service!
Spring Summer is a little more difficult, but we are looking to develop the Irish linen story across a number of products and use a more softer colour base across our lightweight wools. For us the ideal spring piece is something that can transcend seasons, particularly in Ireland where our weather is so unpredictable.
A sneak preview to SS20 and our Irish linen suit in an olive green Glencheck (also available in navy) is a wardrobe must – the great thing about this suit is how you can mix up the styling – the checked jacket with plain linen trousers and a t-shirt or the trousers with one of our Irish linen grandfather shirts (an exclusive made in Ireland product). Embracing the casual trends we are introducing a casual lux collection.
I have been working with our team to review how we can use our beautiful Donegal tweeds and linens in some timeless and the more quirky accessories, e.g. our Donegal tweed teddy bear (Made in the UK) and our throws – made in Donegal by us. This is an exciting area for development – watch this space!
Planning for Autumn Winter 2020 started at the end of May, with an initial concept and style meeting. It is always a little hard thinking about a season a year away, before the current Fall season has even landed and while in the middle of finishing up for Spring Summer 2020!
I would describe our small luxury brand as ‘slow fashion’, a more sustainable approach to fashion, which we believe very strongly in. Our collections are designed to stand the test of time and while we are reactive and very receptive to trends we are not entirely driven by the latest ‘must-have’ fad. This is a relief when looking a year down the line as we know we have a great core range of products to work from and are not reinventing the wheel every season. We have classic blocks and styles that we run year on year, we tweak where required and develop some key new styles to enhance the collection.
Our fabric selection does change from season to season and we are looking to push the boundaries here, particularly in our women’s collection. Traditionally we would have played it quite safe with colourful, yet classic checks and herringbones. Now we are embracing what our own Weaving mill does best on the international market – bold, intricate and colourful fabrics. These stand-out pieces are really quite special and balanced with timeless designs – e.g. herringbones and plains.
While a large focus of the Magee 1866 collections is around our own fabrics – we work with a number of other mills namely in the UK, Italy and Portugal. These mills bring something different – a worsted suiting, a luxury silk print, cottons for trousers, shirting fabrics and an increasing number of technical fabrics for outerwear.
Liberty of London silk print and Italian silks.
Two days in Milan (where our own Weaving also showcase the next season) covers the majority of these mills. This time is spent going from mill to mill, viewing their collections and sampling. I love it – exhausting but exciting to see what other mills are working at and over the course of the show next Autumn’s collection really starts to take shape.
Luxury natural fibre yarns
There is an increasing drive across fashion for brands and consumers to adopt a more sustainable approach to fashion.
Trend inspiration for Autumn Winter 2020.
A snapshot of our own Weaving stand at Milan – showcasing what we do best – luxury and natural fabrics. Cashmeres, wools and alpacas.