24 Hours In Stuttgart With Marc Cain | Part 1


Last week I joined the lovely Kylie from Memoir Mode (check her post on the day here) and a bevy of stylists (from Grazia, Company, Stylist, Harpers and Marie Claire) for a whirlwind trip to Stuttgart to check out the Marc Cain head offices and factory and visit the local spring (beer, lots of beer!) festival…

Another super early start (hello, 5.30am wake-up, my old friend) obviously cast the day in a rather surreal light, but it was probably always going to be that way. There are many things you need to know about Marc Cain, but let me start with the backdrop. White, everything at their head office and factory buildings is white. Replete with Eames chairs in the canteen, glass doors and huge skylights letting in loads of natural light, the place is pretty much a blogger’s dream!

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Thanks to Kylie for snapping enough pics for me to make gifs with!

Founded in 1973 by one Helmut Schlotterer, the company sources its fabrics from Italy and then carries out a three-part production process in Bodelshausen, just under an hour’s drive from Stuttgart. We saw the ultra-modern knitting machines, finishing process and digital printing on our tour (cool headsets and all!); the final making-up takes place in Romania and Hungary. I was utterly struck by the knitting machines – Marc Cain pioneered the first electronically controlled ones in the 1970s. Today, they use 80 flat-knitting machines and 8 circulars ones, which look like spaceships from another planet and work with the yarn so beautifully.


I loved seeing the rolls upon rolls of fabric… (yes, I am one of those people who likes to go and lurk around haberdasheries)

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It was also incredible seeing pieces being steamed and dried and piled up ready to be sent off for finishing…

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A sweater being digitally printed…


One of the eight fabulous circular knitting machines which costs about a bazillion euros (ok, don’t quote me on that!)…

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We also got to meet Marc Cain’s exquisitely clad head designer Karin Veit… (sorry for the glow in these photos, hadn’t got my settings quite right, as well as giving myself the extra challenge of shooting with my manual lens!)


The visit was an incredible insight into a fashion business that is keeping all of its production Europe based, with a huge portion taking place at this factory. Extremely impressive and fantastic to show that it can be done within an environment that is dedicated to a high standard of working conditions (did I mention the Japanese rooftop Zen garden?) as well as aesthetics and innovation. Can you tell I was impressed, then?


A little down time and falling in and out of a bubble chair after our tour before returning to our hotel for… Well, if you’ve seen my Instagram pics, you’ll have an idea of what came next, but if not, you’ll just have to wait for Pt 2! Check out the Marc Cain SS14 collection here.