Craftsmanship & Provenance

Excellence Through and Through
We go to great lengths in all that we do. Every item of Purdey field wear or shooting accessories is crafted with the same attention to detail as our very best rifles and guns.

Fieldcoats

The Making of a Fieldcoat

Purdey fieldcoats are weather resistant, hard wearing and distinctive.

Cutting bench

Purdey tweed arrives from our Scottish mill, and is laid upon the bench for marking out. This is done with great care, to ensure the lines and checks meet up.

Component pieces are marked in tailors’ chalk, and cut out with shears by hand.

Each set of parts is rolled and bunched. Once gathered in small batches, they are passed to the workshop for production.

A Half-Raglan design

A number of finishers will work on each fieldcoat, using a complex pattern. It is distinctive to Purdey, on a half-raglan design.

Because the garment has a full-action back, there is plenty of room for the shooter, whilst at the same time looking elegant.

Finishing

The final touch is to sew in the Purdey label. Proudly ‘made in England’, the coat is ready to journey to Audley House.

Tailoring

The Making of a Jacket

Warm, windproof and immune to fashion’s whims, a Purdey jacket is timelessly elegant. The ideal accoutrement for your shooting weekend.

Marking and cutting

Our tweeds are milled in Scotland, to exclusive Purdey designs.

Once they reach the cutting bench, they are carefully marked out.
We must ensure every element marries beautifully, so each chalk-stroke must
be precise.

We use traditional cutting shears, still working with tweeds as in the days of
James Purdey.

Tailoring

Fresh-cut fabrics are handed to our tailors. Each piece will pass through several pairs of hands, as every specialism is enacted.

First, we construct the shell. We add an internal canvas chest-piece, which gives the jacket life and shape. To that, we fit the lining.

Pressing

Although we press our jackets ‘in line’, at each stage of their making, we also steam press the finished garment, using special blocks or ‘forms’.

This helps set the jacket’s natural drape.

The finish

We sew horn buttons in by hand, and our Made in England label.

The jacket is given one last press, and then sent on its way to South Audley Street in London.

Tweeds

Tweeds

Exclusive to Purdey, our impeccable tweeds make only the finest of fieldwear.

The finest Cheviot yarns

Our tweeds begin their journey high on the Scottish borders.

There, flocks of Cheviot sheep graze just a few miles from our mill.

With yarns that are strong and durable, they are the perfect foundation to our fieldwear.

Blankets of tweed

Before we set up the looms, we open the archives.

With patterns dating back more than a century, we choose a design that is right for our purpose. Then it’s time for the weave to begin.

The results are magnificent blankets of tweed. Each one, unmistakably Purdey.

Finishing touches

The fabric’s then sent to the finishers. It is washed, pressed, and given a waterproof treatment. Our Aquaret coating will repel dirt and moisture, without detracting at all from the feel of the texture.

Finally, each piece of tweed is painstakingly checked. Only once we are fully satisfied will it be passed to the garment maker.

Hats

Hats and Caps

Waxed cotton, Scottish tweed or fine Loden. Always made in the old-fashioned way.

Hand cut, now as always

Our hats and caps are made with traditional methods, hand-cut by our team here
in England.

Materials are meticulously selected, with patterns rigged by eye.

Every stripe is matched to perfection. Every check is paired up with care.

The peak of our craft

Our specialist seamstresses insist on pure Purdey quality, inspecting the finish each step of the way.

Not an element goes unexamined. From the breathable, waterproof membrane, to the hand-sewn final flourish of each peak.

Gun Leathers

Our Gun Leathers

Cartridge bags, gun slips and leather shooting goods — each one hand-made, in time-honoured fashion.

British heritage

Our gun leathers are made in Kent by our case maker, alowing us to offer complete matching sets (Sleeve, bag, case and cartridge magazine), if requested.
When choosing the leather we only use supple and smooth-grained, the finest rawhides. Curriers work the hides by hand, using techniques born centuries ago.

Tanning

For a smooth and even finish, colour is stained by hand and allowed to air dry. A favourite result is bridle leather, which we use in many Purdey goods.
Our new range of luggage also uses the fine and rare English oak bark tanned leather, from Britain’s last remaining oak bark tannery in Devon.
Once synonymous with best London gunmakers, it was highly favoured in ages past, as indicative of a visit to the capital.

Cutting and Stitching

The leather is cut on a bench, following the pattern required. Exclusive Purdey chequering signifies the finest quality in the world.
Once cut, individual pieces are carefully stitched together. The stitching is conducted with the leather turned inside out, before the piece is gently reversed.

Burnishing

With the forged brass buckles in place, it is time for a final burnish.
The burnishing tool is made of the ‘ironwood’ lignum vitae, so dense that it easily sinks. When our leather craftsmen are apprentices, this tool is one of the first things they shape. Often, it will last a whole lifetime, giving their leathers a rich colour in their final deep polish.

Our stamp

Finally, the leather ware is complete. The Purdey name is pressed deeply into it, and the bag, slip or field belt is ready to meet us at Audley House.

Cashmere

Cashmere

Made from the finest yarns in the world, all Purdey cashmere is crafted in Scotland.

The softest Scottish waters

Our cashmere mill is in the borders of Scotland, where the softest of waters washes and soothes the yarns.

This is the land of James Purdey’s forefathers, which we are still proudly linked to today.

Only the very best yarns

We select only the finest cashmere yarns, making our sweaters and knits dense and luxurious.

In the wild, cashmere is nature’s guard against winter. Our cashmeres will keep out the chill wherever you are.

Made with loving care

Our cashmere makers’ skills have been handed down through generations.

Many who work at our mill were taught by their parents or grandparents. This is a living, family tradition.

Still following an age-old technique

Although today’s frame machines make the most of technology, the stages of our cashmere making still follow age-old lines: scouring, drying, dyeing and spinning; before the eventual knitting or weaving.

A sweater is made up in sections, each one linked together by hand.

Shooting Socks

Shooting Socks

Essential for the British shooter, our field socks tend to be subtle, with rich heather tones and dark natural colours.

Made this way for more than half a century

The ‘classic’ Purdey sock comes from Scotland.

There, the body, heel and toe are crafted on a cylindrical ‘knitting machine’. This is a beautiful work of mechanical movement, originally built in the 1950s and still making Purdey socks to this day.

These remarkable machines are kept alive by skilled hands. Parts are fashioned in-house, and built to last for decades.

Strength and resilience

The socks themselves are made from hardy merino yarn, twisted with nylon for strength and shape.

Sock tops often feature hand-knitted designs. These are linked to the main body by hand, using a similar technique as for that of our knitwear.

Sticks

Sticks and Canes

For help up and down dale, or to guard against brambles. Welcome in any shooter’s kit.

Blackthorn, hazel and ash

Naturally, our sticks and canes are handmade.

We work with native British hardwoods, such as blackthorn, hazel and ash. They are ‘coppiced’ a few feet from the ground. This encourages new shoots to bud.

Then we must wait – for three or four years.

Cropping and carving

Eventually, it is time for the harvest.

Our craftsmen cut the branches, taking note of which coppice they come from.

Each shank can be traced to its roots.

Sometimes working in their croft or cottage, our stick-makers whittle the canes. They are worked deftly, beautiful designs emerging: mallard, pheasant and fox.

The maker may not know which creature he will craft, until the first nicks of the knife.

Once cut, the sticks dry: a year will pass before they are seasoned. Then the canes are straightened, using steam, the traditional way.

In time, the cane is finished. Varnished and hand-painted; a unique work of art.

Ties

Ties

Hand cut by our British tie-makers, then slipped by an expert seamstress. This is timeless elegance.

A visit to our mill

We make our ties from pure woven silk, and from wool and silk mixes that complement our tweeds. No matter the blend, tie design always starts with a visit to the silk mill.

Here, the finest silk in England has been crafted for three centuries. We have privileged access to their archive, taking inspiration from the past.

Our designers will also study the sporting world’s birds and animals, drawing from craft and nature to create the new season’s patterns.

Blankets of silk

Once the patterns have been settled, it is time to make the silk.
We set the base colours on the warps of large looms. Then, in the wefts of the fabric, the ground and the designs are brought to life.
The result is a wonderful blanket of silk. It is rolled by hand and taken to London, where our master tie-maker readies it for his team.

Marking and trimming

Craftsmen mark and cut the silk, using knives made for the task and handed down through generations.

Each tie is crafted with a single length of thread, then folded four ways. A seamstress will ‘slip’ them, leaving some thread outside the front blade. This is deliberate: it allows the release of tension, so the tie always recovers its shape after wearing.

One last press

Once completed, the tie is pressed flat. Our ‘Made in England’ label is hand-sewn into place, and the finished result is displayed at Audley House.

Knives

Everything for the modern-day huntsman

Since almost the beginning, we have stocked more than just pistols, rifles and guns.

A combination of function and form

Purdey knives are ideal for hunting, tracking, trapping and skinning. We even offer a knife for survival and bushcraft, with a firesteel of carbon rod.

The blades are crafted from Damascus steel, known for its strength and hardness. Every Damascus blade pattern is unique – each knife’s own distinct fingerprint. This steel is known for its ability to retain sharpness, and will give many years’ unfailing use.

Blades are fixed to their handles with either brass or nickel silver bolts. And they are available in various lengths, from just 2” for a pocket knife, to our 4¾” bushcraft blade.

Buffalo, camel – and mammoth

All our knives’ handles are made from natural materials, either of wood or bone.

For woods, we use ‘stabilised’ box elder, walnut, or birch. In the stabilizing process, we permeate the natural material with monomers and acrylics, giving a dimensionally stable wood. This almost completely removes the possibility of it shrinking, cracking, expanding or warping. Stabilised woods are impervious to oil and water, and can be sanded to a very high polish.

Our bone-handled knives are carved from buffalo horn, giraffe bone, walrus tusk and camel bone. The latter, by being repeatedly boiled and polished, has a fine, white, ivory-like appearance. Giraffe bone, by contrast, is grey. Buffalo horn handles are most often black.

Undoubtedly most incredible of all, however, are the limited edition handles crafted from the tusks of a prehistoric woolly mammoth.

The discovery was made in northern Russia, where the mammoth was recovered from the permafrost. This impressive creature, long-extinct ancestor to the elephant, would have roamed the tundra 10,000 or more years past.

Purdey are privileged to be able to offer a strictly limited edition of eight such remarkable knives. Each one is individually numbered. And each is hand-crafted in England.