One of the things that caught my attention at Project a few weeks ago, was a brilliant collaboration between Stussy and the English stalwart Gloverall. The joint effort produced a limited edition duffle coat for the higher-end Stussy Deluxe label. The special wool toggle-coats are a clever mix of new and old school. The English outerwear guys (Gloverall, Mackintosh, etc.), are smart to participate in these types of partnerships. While collaborations may not generate huge amounts of sales, they are worth it strictly from a marketing perspective. It also occurs to me that there is an interesting and unexpected connection between cool street wear brands (Supreme, Stussy, etc.) and older established companies like Gloverall (the connection might just be the Japanese). Or it could be, that classic items like duffle coats penetrate so many different types of style that they can logically and successfully be paired with a variety of different brands.
I wear my shoes until they have holes in them. The reason I dress the way I do has more to do with not being fashionable, than being on trend. I wear Sperry Top-Siders, Bean Boots, Chuck Taylors, Red Wings, Blucher Mocs, Stan Smiths and Alden shoes because I know I can’t screw that look up. They are called classics for a reason. Change is bad!
Sperry has done a lot to keep their brand relevant without compromising the core customer. Just the fact that the company is working with Band of Outsiders on a small collection, updating the classic Sperry styles and showing them at a show like Project says a lot. Sperry must understand the consequence of an aging customer-base. It is smart to strike while the iron is hot and GQ is on-board. As seen below, the AW08 Sperry offering is fantastic. In this case, change is good.
The updated non-Band of Outsiders Sperry Top-Siders.
No brand has reincarnated itself better than the preppy New Haven born GANT. In the past few years they have shaped and polished themselves into a very stylish and smart collection. A few seasons ago, they collaborated with Jeffery Kalinsky on a small offering of shirts that has since become a full collection of suiting, outerwear and of course the GANT mainstay – woven shirts.
Shirts from the GANT Rugger collection.
Launching for AW08, the new GANT Created by Jeffrey collection features detailing that is quirky and cool. They used their signature oxford-cloth to tip the pockets and for piping in the trousers. The line looks just like what Jeffrey himself likes to wear. Classic pieces that will remain stylish for years to come. GANT has done something unique by taking a small collaboration with a selection of shirts and turned it into a commercially successful brand extension aimed at a wider, yet very fashionable market. Well done.