1st of December 2005: Paul Smith

Paul Smith, Designer: “Tue Mantoni, the Commercial Director of Triumph, and I were having a drink and thought it would be good fun to work on a project. It has been great customising these classic bikes and working with another British brand which has so much history and is a real success story.”

For a perfect Christmas present the ultimate would be one of the very limited (to 100) Triumph Bonneville T100s by Paul Smith. While the Triumph logo and iconic images feature large on the clothing and accessories collections, the motorbike is the reverse – a Triumph ‘bike with Paul Smith design details.The small production run resulted from the tremendous interest in the nine Triumph Bonneville T100’s with one-off paint schemes used as press pieces and for promotional activity worldwide. The two Limited Edition Triumph Bonneville T100s by Paul Smith retail at £7,800 on-the-road, and can be ordered through any Triumph dealership on a strictly first come, first served basis. The lucky owners will take delivery in March 2006.

Now a worldwide byword for stylish British quality, Paul Smith’s introduction into fashion was (quite literally) completely accidental. Working in a clothing warehouse having left school at 16, his real passion was sport. And his ambition was to become a professional racing cyclist - until a terrible accident when he was 17 left him in hospital for 6 months.

A chance post-hospital pub meeting with some of his new acquaintances, and those of the local Art College, led to a burgeoning interest in fashion and design. Within two years, he was managing his first boutique in Nottingham and with the encouragement of his girlfriend (now wife) Pauline Denyer and a small amount of savings, opened a tiny shop in 1970.

Paul started to take evening classes for tailoring and with the help of Pauline (an RCA fashion graduate), Paul was able to create what he wanted. By 1976 Paul showed his first menswear collection in Paris under the Paul Smith label. The rest, as they say, is history.

The Paul Smith Triumph T100 costs EURO 11,000. For further information on this perfect Christmas present please visit www.paulsmith.co.uk or www.triumph.co.uk.

Text: Classic Driver
Photos: Paul Smith


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