Property lawyer Katie Corrigan’s frustration at not being able to find the right coat for work has led her to design her own Scotland-tailored range.
After 20 years in the legal sector she has launched Corrigan Coats as a sideline to her day job at Vialex in Edinburgh, and believes it will release her design creativity.
“I had a number of requirements from a coat, but mainly that it would be hard-wearing and properly keep out the wind and the rain rather than stop mid-thigh or require an umbrella,” she said.
She also wanted it to incorporate a hi-vis element for the dark nights, but not so much that it looked like a cycling or road maintenance garment.
“So the idea evolved into a knee-length coat with a hood and retro-reflective detailing made from Harris Tweed which is naturally wind and waterproof and breathable.”
Katie, 40, found a manufacturer in Cumbernauld, who also happens to make garments for Stella McCartney, and the first batch are now ready for sale.
“I thought it would be great to have something designed and made here in Scotland,” she said.
She chose Harris Tweed partly from nostalgia as her father liked a Harris Tweed jacket, but also because it provides protection from any sort of weather.
Another “must-have” was sustainability, because she has been alarmed by the volume of clothes being dumped in landfill sites – 300,000 tonnes a year. It means the fashion industry is the second most environmentally damaging after oil and gas.
Therefore Corrigan Coats will be made to last, a classic cut, using heritage fabric. But also practical with a decent length hood.
“Because of the nature of the fabric it’s something which will last and can be cherished and is the antithesis of fast fashion,” said Katie.
She will be donating a percentage of profits to a number of charities including Social Bite, which supports the homeless, and Living Streets, a charity that campaigns to improve walking environments.