Advert from rear cover of 'The Navy List' of 1937, an official publication by 'His Majesty's Stationery Office' (HMSO). Notice the Malta outlet
Gieve's was originally established as Gieve Matthews Seagrove Ltd. in 1785, at a time when British military buttons became more elaborate and diversified. After the First World War the company name was changed to Gieve's Ltd. In 1940 during the Blitz, when Gieves Ltd was at 21 Old Bond Street, (see advert above), it suffered a direct hit and several of the company’s historic ledgers and Nelson relics were destroyed. However, in 2007, a large quantity of invaluable documents were discovered in the basement vaults. Three of the surviving customer ledgers for the 1920-1960 period show that Charlie Chaplin, J.P.Morgan, Sir Oswald Mosley, Grand Duke Dimitri (who aided in the murder of Rasputin), David Niven,Laurence Olivier and Winston Churchill were all amongst Gieve's clients. In 1974, Gieve's Ltd acquired Hawkes & Co. (est.1771), this being another British firm of notable repute, to become Gieves and Hawkes Ltd. In 2002 the company was bought by Hong Kong based property developer and garment manufacturer USL Holdings Ltd. resulting in several G&H shops and concessions around the UK, and in many other countries. June 2009 saw Gieves & Hawkes begin a new partnership with British Formula One team Brawn GP, providing the team with their official 'attire', a grey single breasted, two button mohair suit, white shirt and distinctive team coloured tie.
Four different variations marked GIEVE'S LTD are shown above while a fifth variation is simply marked GIEVE'S may be seen below. Notice the different lettering styles employed and small changes in the obverse design between the whole selection.