There’s a buzz at Lambert’s Yard in Leeds city centre. More than that, there’s a kind of magic happening, a sort of alchemy, turning dereliction, silence and neglect into beauty, excitement and charm.
You can find Lambert’s Yard on Lower Briggate, on the right hand side as you walk down from the main shopping thoroughfare that is upper Briggate. Opened in November last year by former chair of the British Fashion Council Harold Tillman, it’s a fashion and design retail destination, aiming to bring together directional designer fashion and lifestyle brands alongside art collaborations and studios to teach and support young Yorkshire designers and makers.
It’s been dubbed the “Covent Garden of the North”, but Tillman was keen to point out that it would in fact copy nothing already in existence and would create its own vibe and agenda. And this was exactly what we found when we visited to stage our exclusive fashion shoot, using brands from Lambert’s Yard.
The oldest timber-framed building in Leeds, Grade II-listed Lambert’s House was built around 1600, named after a well-known family of grocers and tea importers.The new interior space at the Lambert’s Yard development has been created by art director and designer Johnny Buttons, and it is beautiful and airy, contemporary wooden-floored luxe, with stands and rails designed to move about. Architect Andrew Holdsworth designed the second floor event space, which is available for private hire, and will also feature a public events programme including talks, workshops, fashion events and dinners as well as showcasing art and photography exhibitions. Rare restaurant on Lower Briggate is owned by the same parent company and looks out onto Lambert’s Yard itself, the inner courtyard, which now has tables, fake grass and fun wall art.
Our shoot took place in the part that is still derelict, but which will be developed over the next few months, according to Adam Jagger, retail drector. It’s a tiered three-storey building, and many pictures were taken in an old hairdressing salon on the second floor, the sinks broken, the mirrors filthy, photos of styles from the early ‘70s littering the floor and the faded pink counter.
Back to the future, the 21st century, and the brands you can find at Lambert’s Yard, a selection of which are worn on these pages by our models Anna and James.
Antipodium was created by Australian Ashe Peacock, born in London in 2006, producing four collections a years from their Hoxton studio. Blood Brother is a contemporary menswear brand founded in 2011, now with a store in Hoxton. Charlie Borrow is a London-based manufacturer and designer of bags and accessories, established in 2013, while Dobson clothing was founded by Nina Dobson in 2014 and has already established a cult following of men.
Edie Mac is a premium silkwear brand. Gem Jewellery was founded in 2012 by designer Gemma Smith in Leeds. Hide is a contemporary, East London-based leather brand. Klear Klutch specialises in transparent accessories. Mark Thomas Taylor focuses on crafted men’s clothing with a streetwear edge. Natural Selection was founded in 2009 by John Park, with a range of men’s jeans. Samsøe&Samsøe is Danish, merging raw details (often in denim) with classic tailoring. Selected Homme and Selected Femme label mix and matches new trends with fixed favourites. Finally, Spektre is a Milan-based sunglasses brand and Williams Handmade produce leather goods.
• CREDITS: All clothes and accessories from Lambert’s Yard, with thanks to Adam Jagger and Rosie Lyness. Pictures: Simon Hulme. Styling: Stephanie Smith. Make-up: Zoe Peplow for Illamasqua – Victoria Quarter, Leeds. Hair: By the Westrow Artistic Team headed by Steve Rowbottom; www.westrowhair.com. Models: Anna T and James Ellis for Industry Models. Location: Lambert’s Yard, see www.lambertsyard.com.