Whatever Happened to the Goldsmith A2?

Ken at Aero Leather

Well-Known Member
The number of staff at Aero has been up and down like a "whore's drawers" over the years
Peak would be around 50 in the early 1990s at the height of the Japanese market, today it's around 25
After the fraud and failed "coup" in 2012 we cleared out all the dead wood and conspirators and started afresh building a new team around Julie and Paula. Within a few weeks several valued ex Aero staff returned, the ones that had left when we "retired", and we hired a whole bunch of Heriot Watt graduates. What we weren't aware at the time was that only one in ten HW graduates could expect a "proper job" in The UK in the trade they'd spent 4 years studying. Most had been working in places like McDonalds, Asda, Pubs etc Shocking but that's how it is, nobody wants to manufacture outside the 3rd or even 4th World these days
The combination of Julie's drive and the young kids enthusiasm transformed Aero. most of these are still at Aero (around a dozen) and producing garments of the very highest level
What has changed most is the volume of office staff needed these days to deal with "modern life" internet, high volome of mails per order, bureaucracy etc etc.
In the mid 1980s we had a 5 to 1 ratio of product workers to office staff, today it's closer to 2 to 1
That's the biggest change
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Well-Known Member
Amazing to see the evolution over the timeline. I tapped in to Aero around 1997 when I found the 'intrawebby'.

The requirement for 'admin' has hit Tianna's therapy work. They had two and now at five, managing appointments and, like you said, the increased volume of emails and phone calls to achieve the singular outcome.

Thanks for the insight!



Well-Known Member
I would imagine that the shear volume of inquiries, correspondence, sales, billings, production and shipments that the internet generated was over whelming initially to a small business. Was it a gradual staffing increase to meet those demands or did everything hit at once and you had to ramp the business up rather quickly ?


Well-Known Member
Oh absolutely!.....I would imagine that once you got over the shock of the volume and shear numbers of higher sales and got things under control with additional staffing and the like .........you could “sit back and forget about life for a while”. ( Billy Joel, The Piano Man)


Well-Known Member
Staffing up is almost never feasible for a shop that depends on quality, specialist work. A one-person operation with a backlog has a better chance, that is, if a high quality product can be depended upon.

Officer Dibley

Well-Known Member
But not so great if your deadlines keep moving because you are too busy making jackets that are not necessarily on order but interest you ..... well, not great on customer service at least ....


Well-Known Member
Hey guys, thanks for all the concern and support. It is greatly appreciated!

The site is back up and Headwind is not done by a long shot! We have had our share of storms to weather, but I am very determined and I love this industry so much that it would take a lot more than rough seas and tough times to sink the ship.

If Headwind was to ever go out of business, be assured, it would be very public and there would be announcements. Also all customers with pending orders would be notified and would either get their jackets or full refunds.

The Goldsmith will be in production this month. I expect to have the first one done before the end of the month and the next one done shortly after that. Once the updated photos are up online, we will go live and will accept regular orders. Until then, preorders will still be accepted at the discounted price.

All The Best,