Meet Kay, Lissom + Muster’s Operations Manager – the stitch in our binding; the oil in our engine; the Archorganiser. Appreciator of Modernism and Northern Soul.

We stole her away from the December packing and shipping rush (which naturally, she has brilliantly under control) this week to ask for her Christmas gift recommendations, and find out about a few of the favourite things she’s seen and done this year.


Kay’s Manchester Highlights of 2016:

1) Lupo Caffe – Just over the river from Deansgate on Salford’s Chapel Street is our friend Nico’s cafe, serving the best coffee and sweet treats in town, as well a delicious authentic Italian breakfast and lunch dishes. Look out for the evening events too.

2) Manchester Modernist Society Events / The Modernist Magazine – The Modernist Society put on some great events and exhibitions. I particularly enjoyed the ‘Making Postwar Manchester’ walking tour and exhibition at the Manchester Technology Centre. It was focused on the ambitious plans drawn up for remodelling Manchester as a modern city of raised walkways and highways – some of which was realised in the building of the University Precinct, but never completed.


3) I loved Home’s screening of Strike a Pose – the story of Madonna’s dancers from her 1990 Blonde Ambition tour. What an incredible achievement and moment in pop-cultural history it was back then, and so interesting and moving to hear the dancer’s perspective on that experience and life afterwards.

4) Finding calm in St Anns Church. Throughout my 13 years working in retail in Manchester I’ve appreciated the simple elegance of the architecture, and the sense of calm and peace its uncluttered, beautiful interior brings in contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city streets outside. I like to duck in for a few minutes of tranquility when things feel hectic.

5) The Hexagon Tower, Blackley – I always loved this building – a former ICI R&D facility in north Manchester. Such a bold expression of hope in science and modern ideas right in the middle of my childhood home town. Its now enjoying new life as a scientific research hub.

And further afield…

6) I had a fantastic trip by myself to Denmark and Sweden in September – starting in Copenhagen and then exploring a few places in Denmark in Southern Sweden. There were lots of highlights but perhaps the stand-out experience was seeing Henry Moore’s Reclining Figure No5 at the Louisiana Museum. The work itself is wonderful but seeing it in that setting next to the Danish coastline is something I’ll always remember.


Kay’s Christmas Gift Edit…

1) I love the purity of design in our Alice Made This products. My favourite is the Morris Keyring in brass.
2) The Johnstons of Elgin Cashmere Donegal Crewneck is a beautiful investment piece.
3) Mourne Textiles Throws are exquisite. Such a perfect balance of modernist aesthetic and expert craftsmanship.
4) Our Hafod Grange Botanical Paperweights have been really popular this year and are a personal favourite – particularly the goatsbeard version.
5) Leach Pottery Pourer, Tenmoku Black.  Just beautiful. It can be used as a creamer, bud vase, pen pot or any number of other uses.


Kay is wearing our 3/4 Sleeve Boatneck Tshirt, by Sunspel.


Our new showroom space at Hope Mill, Ancoats is open weekdays 10-5pm and by appointment on Saturdays. The full collections of menswear, womenswear, footwear and home products are available. Free customer parking on site; 5 minute walk from New Islington Metrolink stop.



Our new messenger bag is a collaboration with CHERCHBI – a company who share our belief in timeless, understated and functional design, underpinned by impeccable craftsmanship.

Each bag is bench-made for us in Somerset, England – entirely from start to finish by one skilled maker.  We use 24oz waxed superdry canvas from Halley Stevenson of Dundee, Scotland; robust leather which is vegetable tanned exclusively to our specifications by Joseph Clayton of Derbyshire, England. The hides derive from a Northern Irish cattle herd.  In time the hand-forged brass hardware – which we source from Cheshire, England – will dull to a beautiful patina.

Internally a range of useful pockets will securely hold magazines, A4 stationery, technology and all the usual stuff of your daily commute, leaving the main compartment free for your lunch, a camera, or a 13″ laptop or iPad. Unusually, we have used the same super high quality canvas for the bag’s interior, ensuring consistency of aesthetic and longevity of construction throughout.

We have made just a small batch of these bags across three coloursBlack; Navy and Olive – and have individually numbered each one.

They are entirely British made – from hide to tannery; foundry to workshop.

We have moved

Three and a half years ago we opened the doors to a retail space we had created at 14 Tib Lane, Manchester. We wanted to design a context that would reflect the beautifully well made products we would stock there. It was a little off the beaten retail path, but wonderful brands such as Mackintosh, Sunspel, Drake’s, John Smedley, Mourne Textiles and Alfred Sargent considered ours to be a suitable home for their products. Most importantly, we were fortunate to welcome many good and valued customers who helped us to grow to an extent that we needed to consider a new chapter.

Our new premises at Hope Mill – a Grade II listed former cotton mill in historic Ancoats – will provide much needed space for the e-Commerce side of our business. We will also launch a ‘by-appointment’ retail space which will enable us to offer our customers the luxuries of time and space and a level of informed service which we believe is rare in contemporary retail. It will also enable us to expand the range of made-to-order and bespoke products we are able to offer to our customers.

Farewell Tib Lane and thanks to all of our customers for your support. We hope to welcome you to Hope Mill soon.