Garment Stories

Rosie Small shares her story of her Bernat Klein collection, and its lasting appeal.

Rosie Small

I have collected Bernat Klein garments over many years, some gifted by friends who knew I loved his clothes, and others from my regular trawling of charity shops during my lunch-hour from work.

Matching blouse and skirt in a knitted polyester fabric known as Diolen

This fabulous long swirling skirt and matching blouse with gorgeous full cuff detail was bought in the YWCA Thrift Shop in Bank Street Glasgow for £8 when I worked as a secretary at Glasgow University.

Rosie Small 2020

This outfit was bought on a complete impulse in 1973 when I popped into a Bernat Klein factory showroom in either Galashiels or Selkirk. I was blown away by the explosion and combination of colours. I just had to buy one, but I recall it was expensive!

This was in the early 70s and the era of long dresses and dinner parties.

My wardrobe at this time was nearly all second-hand outfits. A like-minded friend had opened a shop in the west end of Glasgow called 'Flogatog', which sold quality second-hand clothing and bric-a-brac. The shop was a treasure trove of seasonal outfits, which included many garments that had hardly been worn.

My Bernat Klein outfit was a hit at the parties and dinners when we entertained. I felt a million dollars.

I served the same dinner menu for a year, which was prawn cocktail, beef bourguignon and rice, followed by Black Forest gateau. I was more interested in wearing my gorgeous Bernat Klein outfit than I was in cooking.

The menu was served to different guests each time I hasten to add!

Rosie with her daughter and granddaughter all wearing bernat Klein, 2020