Richard Nicoll ''needed a break'' from high-fashion.

The designer - who skipped showing his line at London Fashion Week last month - created six collections on a limited budget last year which left him exhausted and in need of some time away before he took up the position of creative director at Jack Wills.

He explained: ''I needed a break.

''My sales weren't going very well and the last couple of years have been super-stressful. It's so different from how it was when I started and I'm just not sure if I'm signed up to what it has become.''

However, Richard - who has previously had his designs worn by stars including Keira Knightley, Kylie Minogue and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley - is now enjoying his new role within the high street retailer because he is introducing fresh ideas to the brand which were inspired by his time spent creating designer collections.

Speaking about his work with Jack Wills, he said: ''I wanted to understand that demographic better because I wasn't really au fait with it, but that's been part of the fun. It's my responsibility to refresh the brand, but not reinvent it. It's been interesting to find that balance. What's unique about Jack Wills is that it's not really fashion, it's more lifestyle product, and in a way that makes it more approachable.''