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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.

Light Green Georgie Country Check Tweed Waistcoat, Light Green Lily Country Check Tweed Jacket

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!

Multicoloured Carey Checked Donegal Tweed Skirt, Multicoloured Linsford Checked Donegal Tweed Coat

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.

Green Herringbone Donegal Tweed Flat Cap, Green Salt & Pepper Handwoven Donegal Tweed Classic Fit Jacket

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.

Clockwise from top: Green Herringbone Cushion, Pink, Green & Oat Patchwork Lambswool Throw, Green Donegal Tweed Teddy Bear – Large, Green Herringbone Scarf.


As much as we love green, being green is important to us too, read up on our commitment to respecting our environment and how we do business in it.

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.

Murvagh beach with the Bluestack mountains in the distance.

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.

One of my favourite accessories – our Donegal tweed teddy bears – this one is made in a beautiful blue salt & pepper tweed.

Explore our Collections

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. 

Donegal bay

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. 

Raw Materials

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).

Manufacturing 

  • 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.

Energy

  • 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.

The Finn suit – made in Irish linen, designed and woven by Magee Weaving,
coordinated with an Irish linen grandfather style shirt, the Corlea.

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. 

All-new zip Malin sweatshirt with appliqué tweed ‘1866’

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. 

The Emma coat in cashmere & wool, woven in Donegal.

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.

The Grace coat in a contemporary blue salt & pepper tweed, designed and woven by us in Donegal. Styled with A Liberty print silk Darcy top and Sandy cropped chinos.

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.

The planning for the Spring Summer photoshoot starts in December when the initial concepts are played out for the season. Spring is the perfect season to showcase the best of Donegal, our home and the place where much of our inspiration stems for the collections.

Inspirational mood boards for SS20

The process evolves at Milan in February, our main textile show, when choosing fabrics for the collection. At times it can be hard getting excited about linens and the beach as the snow falls in Europe in the middle of winter, but the fashion world is always two seasons ahead.

Selecting fabrics at Milan

A photoshoot has a glamorous ring to it, but involves rather mundane planning and logistics, in particular chasing samples around the world to make sure they arrive on time. However it does have its exciting elements – pulling together the long-planned outfits and creating a story around the collection, we finally see those initial concepts coming to life.

The day arrives and with it, the hope it will be dry, we don’t mind if it is cloudy (better for the photographer) or windy but horizontal rain, so often found in Donegal creates a problem. We have managed over the years to combat all weathers – from snow, to gales and torrential rain. This year we chose Murvagh to shoot – a long sandy beach banked with Maran grass and dunes. Perfect for this year’s theme – a Sea Safari.

We have a brilliant team – Alex our photographer who we have used for the last few years – he has the ability to give Magee, a brand steeped in heritage, a cool and contemporary edge. We pull video into the day as well – a vital medium for the digital age we live in, Ciaran quietly works around Alex and brings the day to life with his engaging behind the scenes and collection videos. Add makeup, hair, models and our own patient, hardworking and enthusiastic team.

This season for men’s we are using Roelof, a fun and classically good looking South African model who we shot a few seasons ago. (The key is ensuring our models work with our brand profile and fit our clothes – we have had a few disasters over the years, with wooden models and those that simply do not fit our garments, despite their profile size and reassurance from the agency…)

The day usually starts with makeup and hair around 0700. By the time Roelof arrives we are ready to shoot the first shot at about 0900. This year we started with our capsule collection of casual lux – a contemporary, branded range of Irish Linen shirts, pants, sweats, polos and tees – a very new look for us! We try to get the bulk of the shots in before lunchtime – about 1400 and tend to work through about 12 – 14 shots a day, with casual clothing it is easy, but suits create require more tweaking to ensure they look sharp.

My aim is to ensure the shots look great but also that the day is relaxed and fun. If everyone is happy the shots and videos are so much better. The results below speak for themselves, a sneak preview into our SS20 collection – launching January 2020.

An Irish Linen suit designed and woven by us styled with an Irish Linen grandfather shirt. Suit available from February 2020

Magee 1866 Men's collection SS19 featuring a Donegal silk & cotton blazer.
Atlantic Adventure SS19 – Men

This timeless nautical theme inspired by summer escapes has been given an sophisticated update for SS19.
Whilst texture is still present through the melange yarns and geometric weaves, the fabrics are sleeker and silhouettes are slimmer and more structured. The colours and fabric designs are more defined, reflecting the force of the ocean and the vividness created by the summer sun.
Key colours include turquoise, true raspberry, ice-cream white, pewter, ocean blue, air-force and deep navy, with a pop of chartreuse found within casual pieces.
The hero pieces include Donegal silk cotton blazers, graphic herringbone knits, geometric and bold pattern printed shirts; a modern, water-resistant quilted jacket and a reversible mac.





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