British Skills de Rigueur at David Nieper Fashion House

In advance of this year’s London Fashion Week, Derbyshire fashion house David Nieper, has announced plans to expand its Sewing Academy with up to £500,000 to be invested in training new recruits over the next three years – a clear indication that in fashion, British skills never go out of style.

The investment will help support the 250 strong staff based in Derbyshire meet the increasing global demand for ‘Made in Britain’ fashion.

Fashion design and production have historically been influenced by the environment, politics, culture and social change. The UK leaving the EU is already impacting the industry, with a revolution in manufacturing and emerging trend to bring production and skills back to UK shores.

David Nieper celebrated 55 years in business last year and is one of the few UK designers never to have taken production overseas. The business, which has always invested in local skills, is proud of its Derbyshire heritage and the people that make the clothes – from the designer’s first sketch in the studio, to the dressmaker’s final stitch in the sewing room. 

Christopher Nieper, Managing Director of the family business, David Nieper commented:

“Our company has always supported local skills, however with the changing market conditions British skills are now more ‘de rigueur’ than ever, which is why we are making further investment in our Sewing Academy. It forms parts of our ‘act local, think global’ strategy for growth.

Indeed the Local/Global theme of this year’s International Fashion Showcase at Somerset House is one that really resonates with us. The 26 countries taking part in the exhibition have been asked to explore in their Spring/Summer 17 collections how local culture translates into a global fashion language.

Here at David Nieper, at the coalface of British fashion manufacturing local culture has been woven into our collections at every level for decades; from the swing tags personally signed by the dressmakers, to the collection of iconic Derbyshire landscape photography included with customer orders. 

We are a living breathing example of how local culture translates into a global fashion brand, by acting local and thinking global we leave our customers in Europe and beyond, in no doubt as to the local influences and heritage of their garment.”

The David Nieper Sewing Academy was first set up in 2015 to address the chronic skills shortage in the UK’s fashion and textiles industry, the result of decades of UK fashion designers taking their manufacturing operations overseas.

In an endeavour to capture specialist skills before they were lost forever, trainees at the Academy benefit from working with experienced seamstresses where skills are passed on.


Trainees learn all the dressmaking essentials including cross-stitch, overlock, lockstitch and bar tacking, and progress through a range of different fabrics including; cottons, silks, elastics and wools.

The Sewing Academy acts as a platform for trainees to pursue a variety of careers in fashion manufacturing from dress making to pattern cutting, fabric cutting, design, knitwear and quality control.




For further information contact:

 David Nieper, Press Office, Lauraine Jordan

[email protected]

07904 257686