Betty Jackson, was born in 1940 in Backup, Lancashire, England. She attended the Birmingham College of Art from 1968 to 1971. She originally wanted to be a sculptor, an aspiration which was thwarted by an allergy to plaster of paris. She then worked in London as a freelance film illustrator till 1973, when she joined Wendy Dagworthy.
From 1975 to 1981, Jackson worked first for Quorum and then for Coopers, both clothing manufacturers.
Since 1981, she and her French-born husband David Cohen formed their own salon and since then she has produced collections under her own name and has swiftly achieved an international reputation as a designer of young up-to-the-minute clothes. She rescales separates into different, often larger proportions and makes them up in boldly coloured and patterned fabrics.
In 1985 Betty was awarded "British Designer of the Year" award.
The rescaled sporty shapes give the clothes an androgynous feeling reflected when the menswear collection was launched in 1986.
She is one of the most established British designers. She celebrated 21 years in business in the Spring of 2002, with a collection voted one of the best ever. Jackson has diversified into home furnishings, accessories, and knits. She markets her Autograph range at Marks and Spencer and is also a visiting professor at the Royal College of Art.
In November (2005?) Debenhams the famous store in London, will be putting two new designer's work on display. Betty Jackson will sell her widely awaited "BLACK' collection and Julien McDonald' will market his new line of STAR lingerie
Betty Jackson has gained an international reputation as a designer of young, up-to-the-minute clothes. She rescales separates into larger, unstructured proportions; loose, uncomplicated shapes with no awkward cuts are often made up in boldly colored and patterned fabrics. Jackson loves bright prints and knits, often working in conjunction with the textile designers Timney Fowler in colors complementing the warm, smoky, and earthy base colors of the collections. The oversized printed shirts and hand-knit sweaters are always popular and usually the first garments to sell out. Her previous print and knit themes were inspired by Sonia Delauney, oversized paisleys or abstract painterly shapes and textures reminiscent of Matisse or Braque. Jackson never uses androgyny to shock or alienate her established customer or to make a fashion statement. Instead, her themes evolve each season, incorporating the newest shapes, lengths, and fabrics. She tends to favor expensive, supple fabrics like linen, suede, or viscose mixes, crepes, chenilles, and soft jerseys. She emphasized soft colors of beige and green, with brighter colors as highlights. The fluidity of the garments was complemented by harder leather accessories. Outer-wear included fur coats and stoles and Pashmina, and skirt lengths varied from just above the knee to below the knee.
Laura Linney, Lulu Guinness, Davina McCall, Anne Robinson, Jennifer Saunders