The Great Exhibition

Produced in collaboration with Johnstons of Elgin, this design tells Sabina’s imagined version of the historic journey of Johnstons of Elgin from Scotland to London’s Crystal Palace for The Great Exhibition in 1851. The tale unfolds across the length of the scarf, traversing from left to right. The design shows the animals of the Scottish Highlands helping to carry the fine cashmere threads and fabrics to display in London, starting with the stag and hare, and weaving ‘downriver’ to the London pigeon and swan.

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The Making of The Great Exhibition Stole

We invite you to discover The Great Exhibition Stole, designed by Sabina Savage and produced in Scotland by Johnstons of Elgin.

The video below follows the making of this heritage piece, from Sabina's illustration all the way through the cashmere carding and weaving process.


The river depicted in the design transforms from Elgin’s River Lossie to the London Thames as the story progresses. The ancient and picturesque London to Elgin trainline is featured, alongside much of Scotland’s beautiful flora and fauna. This piece starts and finishes with nature, from the beautiful cashmere fibres, though the illustrated wildlife and finishing with the incredible teaseling process at the Johnstons of Elgin mill.


View The Great Exhibiton illustration in progress, and see how the drawing transforms into a detailed and intricate scarf design. Sabina creates a story for each collection, as shown below, which is then illustrated and narrated through her elaborate handiwork.


Sabina works on the illustration and tests the final product in her London studio.