Founded by Zowie Broach and Brian Kirkby in 1997
British designers and partners, Zowie Broach and Brian Kirkby launched their label in 1997 named after ancient Celtic warrior queen Boudicca.
After initially launch the company struggled financially. Broach and Kirkby refused corporate help but were eventually awarded sponsorship from American Express, following in the foot steps of Alexander McQueen, the first designer to receive finance from the company.
With financial stability, the pair were able to design both ready-to-wear and couture lines.
In 2001 the label was asked to present at London Fashion Week for the first time, four years after the house was founded.
The company has always valued the arts community and both designers give regular talks at the Tate Modern in London. Previous collaborations have included projects with Mike Figgis, Gillian Wearing and David Adjaye.
The pair were asked to design a Christmas tree at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London in 2007, a privilege among designers. In the same year Boudicca was the first independent British fashion house to be invited to show their haute couture line in Paris. The collection was met with widespread critical acclaim and marked a huge moment of recognition for the label. Boudicca was asked to show their collection for the second time the following year.
Boudicca describe their own collections as ‘stories, short scenes from films, that at times are simple and reference the obvious, at others become complex and ill fitting.’ The labels sharp and moody designs can be paralleled to Alexander McQueen’s, however the two designers resist the comparison.
Boudicca’s style is a careful mix of feminine and the androgynous. The constructed tailoring and finest fabrics create avant-garde garments that are to be worn for a lifetime. Never mass produced, a Boudicca item has a certain amount of exclusivity.