Dressmaker profile: Samantha Hughes
Samantha Hughes was born in Wolverhampton, England in 1965. She knew from the age of 14 after watching a TV programme featuring Zandra Rhodes, a designer just starting out in a small garden shed in her garden, that her future career would be in the fashion industry. She remembers the vibrant pink colour of Zandra’s hair and the fabulous colours of the garments that surrounded her and how excited they made her feel about clothing.
Samantha spent lots of her free time sketching and sewing and after finishing high school in 1981 enrolled on a Fashion Course at the local college.
The course was a DATEC Diploma in fashion and related studies. This course was to gear Samantha up to start her first employment in the fashion industry in September 1983.
Samantha’s first job in 1983 was to design the nightwear for Marks and Spencers PLC.
This was a fabulous position to have as M&S are a very successful business in the UK. Her head of design was Mavis Smith and her sample machinist was Alwyn Chadwick. Both of these ladies gave Samantha the support and technical/design imput that is so necessary in the fashion industry to create quality garments. She thanks both of these ladies hugely for their time and dedication whilst she was learning her trade. She would also like to thank Warren Murphin for being the most exceptional factory manager she could have possible worked for. Warren taught her about understanding a factory and realizing that the most important people in a factory are the people who are sewing and creating the garments at factory floor level.
Samantha went on in 1887 to learn about both Schiffli and Barudan multi head embroidery design. Adding to a list of ever growing experience in the clothing industry.
Samantha went on in 1989 to design the embroidered blouses for M&S. She traveled extensively to offshore factories and embroidery units to source excellent quality and makeup procedures. Samantha thanks Eric Burke for his imput whilst creating the embroidered blouses. Eric’s attention to detail was faultless and Samantha’s knowledge of quality, costing and mass production methods are from hours of watching Eric do his job.
In 1997 Samantha relocated with her family to Doncaster to work on children’s wear for M&S. Her job description changed from designer to Garment/Pattern Technologist due to the ever changing fashion industry requirements. More and more manufacturing units were being used offshore so there was a need to use the skills Samantha had learnt from her very first employment as designer and further skills she had learnt from very experienced people in the clothing industry. This experience and skill is now being used for advising foreign factories how to manufacture garments with quality of the highest standards. These standards are now being applied to Samantha’s own clothing ranges.
During the course of a very busy working life Samantha has had 3 fabulous children whom she loves dearly and has devoted her life to raising correctly. She feels that being a parent is the best job in the world but also the most difficult job in the world and feels that if you see your children being respectful, curtious and people praise you for their manners and behaviour, then you have done your job correctly.
Samantha always had dreams of being her own boss and to create her own clothing range but she kept her dreams on hold to dedicate her life to providing for her children as best she could. Now that her children are a little older she can start to live her dreams.
Samantha met her now husband, Tony in 2007. Tony has been a positive force in Samantha’s life and has given her the confidence to start to create her own Lingerie Range which she has dreamt of having for many years. Samantha is comfortable creating lingerie and nighwear as it is where she started out many years ago with Mavis, Alwyn and Warren. Happy Days!!
South Camino El Galan
Sahuarita, AZ 85629