The Philosopher’s Jumper: Bella Freud x The School of Life

Iconic British designer Bella Freud has collaborated with London’s The School of Life (TSOL) on a project called The Philosopher’s Jumper.

The brief for Bella was to create a garment for the thinking man or woman. After much discussion about how to approach the project it was agreed on the creation of a timeless minimal piece that has lived through countless evolutions, never losing its essence, the black jumper.

To celebrate the collaboration, renowned fashion photographer James Mountford was commissioned to take portraits of 10 modern male and female thinkers, including revered psychotherapist Philippa Perry.

Each jumper comes with a pamphlet on style and images of philosophers wearing their own black jumpers.

“We approached Bella Freud to help us create the ideal garment for the thinking man or woman,” commented Morgwn Rimel, director of TSOL. “The black jumper has taken pride of place in the wardrobes of intellectual heroes as diverse as Herbert Marcuse, Iris Murdoch, Simone de Beauvoir and Jean-Paul Sartre. We see The Philosopher’s Jumper as an invitation for us to share in the philosophical life.”

Bella Freud commented: “The black jumper is the ideal suit of armour to contain you while allowing you to free your thoughts. For all its simplicity there is nothing more alluring than a perfect jumper in black merino wool. It is a sheath that keeps you feeling under the radar while attracting of interesting people. The words which normally adorn the front of my jumpers appear in a subtler form on a small label on the side which reads ‘know yourself.”

The garment is now on sale from The School of Life’s online store Theschooloflife.com for £150 in a range of sizes for both men and women.

PICTURED LEFT: Hannah Dawson, recipient of a MPhil and PhD from University of Cambridge and now lectures in the history of ideas at New College of the Humanities; RIGHT: Charlie Gent, works with businesses to help them communicate better and think more creatively with ideas from culture and science.