I am Grant Lyons, founder of The Heirloom Sweater by Lyons of Scotland. I wanted to introduce the sweater to the world and talk about why I started this company in the first place.
About three years ago I lost my father. Peter Lyons was born in Hamilton, Scotland in 1934. His mom died when he was six and he was raised by his aunt and uncle. He joined the British Navy when he was 15 and along the way he was stationed in Cape Town — where he met my mother, where they married, and where I was born and raised.
For those of you who have lost somebody close to you there’s another level of awareness that you reach, maybe especially when you watch someone you love move on to whatever’s next.
I woke up one day and realized I couldn’t talk to him anymore and so it’s the memories and the things that he left behind that hold the emotion and keep him alive for me.
One of these things was a sweater. I found it in his wardrobe and I was immediately stopped in my tracks because of where it transported me to. All those times hearing him laugh, telling jokes, or simply say he was “bloody freezing, I should have worn my jersey”. Also, there’s the smell of him on it which is on another emotional level depending on how much I miss him.
So, to the beginning.. I met Roy Hakimian, founder of Active Cashmere while I was in Los Angeles. I started talking about my father and he started talking about his father and it turned out they had died a week apart from each other. Over a spectacular impromptu Omakase lunch we spoke about family, cashmere, food and how much his father loved Scotland.
I started wearing a few pieces from his collection. A couple of cashmere tracksuits and a sweater. I absolutely loved the quality immediately, I hadn’t experienced this level of luxury knitwear before and I started wearing it all the time. Another great thing about these sweaters is that you can cold wash in a machine without anything happening to it which is perfect for me. It’s also water repellent, so don’t sweat the rain.
Roy and I started talking more and we worked for a year to perfect The Heirloom Sweater. We thought it was the perfect name because we wanted something people would want to wear and look after for life. HEIR, because we leave it to the ones we love; and LOOM a tool representing the craft of knitting.
Our emphasis is always asking our customers to do their best to look after it, because we’re merely custodians for the next generation. We provide a protective sweater bag and always recommend “when it’s not on you, it’s in the bag!”
We make one sweater. The Heirloom Sweater. In black Scottish cashmere yarn with a blue lion over the heart. We make it perfectly, on demand, one at a time at our factory in Brooklyn. It’s something I’m really proud of and someone receiving it should know this is a gift of love, made with love. We want you to live in it and care for it for life. Hopefully you never come back! 😁
The symbol of the lion was designed by my friend and illustrator, Patrick Murphy whom I cannot thank enough. My dad would have loved it. The rampant lion. It’s as Scottish as haggis. This great design is a mark that represents the people who wear the sweater. I just love the idea of seeing people in the street wearing it. If you see me, I’ll be wearing mine and I hope you come over and just give me a hug, maybe tell me about your dad.
To my existing customers and future ones; Wear your sweater with honor and dignity because you’re not only honoring your parents, you’re also honoring mine.
I’m proud to present The Heirloom Sweater by LYONS of Scotland. #wearthisforlife