The Cordings History

We are so excited to have released our new Limited Edition Collaboration with Cordings of Piccadilly.

A bit of history...

Cordings was established in 1893, located at 231 The Strand. Cordings relocated to 19 Piccadilly in 1877 where it stands today, 140 years later. 

In 1909, JC Cording & Company was granted the Prince of Wales warrant as waterproofers to the future King George V. In 1922, the young Prince of Wales adopted Cordings as one of his outfitters, as had his father before him. It was at this time that the famous Newmarket and Idstone boots were patented, and Cordings made Newmarket boots for Elizabeth, the mother of the current monarch, the Duke of Windsor, and Mrs Simpson.

To show off its remarkable waterproof properties, a canvas and leather Newmarket boot remained submerged in a glass tank full of water in the shop window at Cordings for so many years that it became part of the London taxi drivers’ ‘knowledge’. Cordings no longer makes them, but examples of the boots showing the immaculate craftsmanship you would expect from Cordings can still be seen around the store today. The old workshop area in the basement with its parquet floor is still there, along with carefully written ledgers with details of boot orders.

Cordings was quickly becoming synonymous with outdoor living and was an important shop for all city gentlemen to call at before venturing into the countryside.

Cordings and Eric Clapton

In 2003, the current management team at Cordings approached their best customer and asked if he would assist in a management buyout. The customer was Eric Clapton.

“I first became aware of Cordings in my mid-teens,” Eric explains. “I come from the country and it was the highlight of our week to come up to London and listen to the musicians. It was difficult to get home late, so I would spend that time till dawn just walking the West End. I remembered Cordings. It stuck in my mind as a place of tradition; the heritage of England.”

Eric has helped mastermind Cordings’ re establishment as the home of country clothing, including the introduction of a women’s range in 2003. “I knew that my wife had found it difficult to find clothes which were genuinely practical yet stylish at the same time. The lines are very flattering and feminine and the fabrics are lighter, but they retain the thread of the Cordings core products.” When scheduling allows, Eric is very involved in choosing the tweeds for the new seasons, and his input in the design process is invaluable.

Cordings Today

This ability to combine practicality and style has made Cordings the go-to place for gentlemen and ladies who are firmly established in the country while still wanting to cut a dash in town; and the pieces in its country clothing lines are now as much loved internationally as they are in Britain.

After 176 years in London, Cordings felt it was time to take the step of setting up a second store and opened in the historic Spa town of Harrogate, on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales, in November 2015. Cordings has strong connections with Yorkshire. Many of its cloths are woven in local mills and numerous items in the collections are crafted in the county, including caps and waistcoats. Set in the stylish surroundings of Westminster Arcade, the store houses three floors of Cordings’ collections, including field and country clothing, city suits and an exclusive ladies’ collection.

 Cordings and Jack Wills

Cordings famously collaborated with quintessentially British outfitters, Jack Wills in 2012 to create a collection of cords known as the Copthorn trouser that were incredibly popular. 

Cordings and Dukes

A collection of two traditional Chelsea boots have been designed with a tan and midnight options available for purchase. Handmade from Italian soft suede, leather Goodyear welted soles and Cordings boot pull branding, the Chelsea boot is set to be a popular staple item for winter wardrobes.
The collaboration aims to bring together two sectors of the market with Dukes focusing on a younger audience devoted to quality footwear and classic styles and Cordings representing a distinguished country based client with a strong brand loyalty to the store based in Piccadilly.

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