Dan Branston is one smart cookie. He’s the man behind sustainable, repurposed clothing megageniuses Pikol, snuffling out the best quality forgotten gems of fabrics out there in the wild, and making them into effervescent, one-off original pieces, all by hand. We couldn’t not collaborate with him – it simply had to be done. We borrowed a few minutes of his time for a little chat in the lead-up to the wardrobe-redefining Percival x Pikol collection launch. We wanted to know a bit more about his background, because surely he was some sort of child prodigy, right? Hey! I don’t really have much of a traditional fashion background.
We were wrong.
I did a science degree at university and didn’t really know what I was going to get into after that. Really soon after I graduated, lockdown happened, and I started sewing shirts for fun. I really enjoyed it and wanted to find a way to keep doing it.
Sure, but what inspired you to start Pikol and where did the idea to repurpose old textiles originally come from?
I think in the back of my head, I always thought it would be fun to start a clothing company but had no idea how to go about doing it. I started out sewing the shirts from scratch, using the materials around me. The first one was made out of an old bed sheet. Then I found an applique tablecloth at my house and I used that.
SHOP PERCIVAL X PIKOL
So what’s the journey like? The process. From sourcing old textiles to the final one-off piece. How do you ensure this focuses on creating pieces sustainably?
I start by choosing the fabric – it needs to be really good quality linen. I also take a long time choosing embroidery that feels unique and interesting. I really enjoy sourcing the fabrics – me and my mum travel all over the place to find them. It’s nice to find and repurpose something that otherwise wouldn’t be used.
That’s extremely wholesome. What inspired the pieces in the Percival x Pikol collection, and where did you source the fabrics and trims for the collaboration?
So we did six pieces together which I’m really happy with. The sweatshirt is based on a 1950s tablecloth with a poppy design on it. Then the track jacket sleeve sections are all made from hand-embroidered vintage tablecloths – they’re all one of one. I found an early 20th Century wall hanging from America which was embroidered with some really great imagery that felt characteristic of the Old West. That inspired the cross-stitching on the shirts and jackets that we made.
SHOP percival x pikoL
What’s next for Pikol, then?
I’m just going to try and make more shirts! They’re all one-offs so it always feels like I’m making new things.
SHOP percival x pikol