Lodsworth woman designs celebrity racing silks for Goodwood

Claire Featherstone with DJ Sara Cox wearing the silks she made for her
Claire Featherstone with DJ Sara Cox wearing the silks she made for her

What started as a bit of a hobby has turned into a business for mother-of-three Claire Featherstone working from her Lodsworth cottage.

Claire enjoyed making dresses and decided to take the plunge and go into business earlier this year.

But she was given an unexpected boost when she was asked to take on a special commission during Glorious Goodwood.

She was chosen by Goodwood to create the racing silks worn by the celebrities taking part in the new Magnolia Cup charity race in aid of Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Claire was given the chance to create the racing silks for Radio One DJ Sara Cox, as well as Annette Lynton Mason, wife of Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, and polo player Clare Milford-Haven.

Experienced at working with beautiful fabrics and creating bespoke dresses, Claire was asked to make the silks in a stunning array of fabrics.

“I worked closely with each celebrity to ensure the fabric colour and design suited them and the fit of the racing silk was perfect,” she said.

“I had to factor in thick body protectors and therefore the silks needed to be loose and billowy, yet still elegant.

“It was a real challenge but they ended up looking great – I was thrilled!”

Patricia Dickie from Goodwood, who created and organised the charity race, said: “We were absolutely delighted with Claire’s finished silks.

“The celebrities looked fabulous and it added a unique touch of glamour to the race.

“We will definitely be repeating the Magnolia Cup next year as it’s for such a good cause and we’re hoping Claire will make the silks again.”

Over a number of years, Claire has made not only her own dresses but many others for friends and family.

Urged on by their support and enthusiasm and having a little more time now her children are growing up, Claire decided to start Featherstone Frocks earlier this year.

“My aim is to make each of my ladies feel both gorgeous and confident wearing their dress and be assured that it is totally unique.”

According to Claire, everyone’s shape was different so what she aimed to do was accentuate the positive – and eliminate the negative.