J.K. Rowling and I have something in common. No, I haven’t written a book (yet!) but before the advent of Harry Potter she was a single mum finding it hard to make ends meet. My starting point too was no home, no job, no money and two teenagers to raise. My self-esteem was rock bottom.
But if you’re down and out there’s only one way to go and that’s up.
What could I do? I needed to earn a living.
I reflected on my passions. Fashion, fashion and fashion. I had studied Fashion Management at university, learning about business, garment technology, marketing and law. Luck was on my side when my industrial placement year turned out to be at the iconic company, Burberry. Allocated to the section producing coats for the Japanese market, I couldn’t have had a better training ground. Working my way through every department I learnt about design, pattern cutting and manufacturing. Asked to supervise the development of a new style from the drawing board into full production, I threw myself into the project gaining invaluable knowledge while basically having a ball! Life couldn’t be better. Then I made a mistake. A huge mistake. We all do. Burberry’s offered me a job. A good job. And I turned it down. At that time in my life I had other priorities.
And so time passed and I found myself in middle age, needing a new direction. I thought back to my years in the fashion hub of Hong Kong where, as a young mother, I had been surrounded by dazzling, eclectic fashion, everything from high end couture to cheap and cheerful market stalls. If only I could be part of the fashion world again.
I would love to be able to say that I planned my next move. But I didn’t. What happened was a happy accident. I was offered the opportunity to sell high quality gloves. I jumped at the chance. An essential and exciting fashion accessory, gloves handed me everything I wanted.
It’s all about the name
And so I launched Humphrey’s. Why Humphrey’s?
Because I wanted a British name that reflected both company and family values. Humphrey was my grandfather’s name. Humphrey Orchard Lyne to give him his full title. His name epitomised his character: respectable, traditional, distinguished. Perfect for a doctor and surgeon, renowned in Whitby, North Yorkshire in the mid-twentieth century.
And perfect too for a company that sells gloves oozing with class and distinction.
It’s all about the product
Passionate about both design and manufacture, Humphrey’s merges traditional skills, garnered over centuries, with modern technologies to provide unique glove designs for discerning clients.
Sourced in Nigeria and Ethiopia, we select premium hairsheep cabretta leather for our gloves. Soft and buttery, it is a joy to wear, combining suppleness with strength, style with comfort. Then we line our gloves with cashmere or silk for that touch of ultimate luxury.
Humphrey’s bespoke fashion gloves are the epitome of classic elegance, sophistication and glamour while our sporting and specialist gloves are practical, durable, and stylish. Whichever you choose, our gloves are hand crafted: shaped, cut and stitched to ensure an exquisite fit, constructed with care and finely finished with decorative detail.
It’s all about the family
Family heritage matters to Humphrey’s. Really matters. From the name that launched our brand to the day to day designing, we are first and foremost a family firm. During academic holidays, I’m lucky enough to have help from my son who enjoys focusing on sales and from my daughter who helps with administrative tasks. Maybe in the future they’ll decide to join the family firm. Who knows?
We consider our customers to be our extended family and build relationships with them. It’s this very special customer service that distinguishes Humphrey’s from other companies. From the moment we place your handprints on record to the moment you unpack your individually designed gloves we hold an ongoing conversation with you, a dialogue that ensures your total satisfaction. Guaranteed.