Jacket Required AW15 recap
Words by Bossman75
Last week I had the good fortune to attend the AW15 Jacket Required menswear trade show. Amongst the buyers and traders are some the industries most important figures, influencers and collaborators. The atmosphere was welcoming and the energy levels high. It was soon evident that everyone was genuinely happy to be there. This really is an achievement for a bi-annual trade show of this size. I was invited as a member of the Press and was able to browse, ask questions and talk candidly about the collections.
The pick of brands for me was The Hundreds, with a collection that was far more mature and balanced than expected. With a seemingly new emphasis on quality and fit, what’s normally a graphic heavy experience was decidedly more diverse. This came as a surprise and indicates a concerted and perhaps necessary move forward for the brand. Having not worn anything from The Hundreds before, I would have gladly picked out a handful of pieces including a heavyweight checked shirt and zip through baseball sweat. There was a particular t-shirt that I had an instant appreciation for, it’s graphic depicting the cover to my favourite soundtrack of all time. A.FOUR/The Fourness offered an essence of Japanese contemporary menswear, coming across as familiar without losing any intrigue. Addict were as expected with functional outerwear and artist driven graphics. Their reflective reversible jacket and its detailing has to be seen to really be appreciated.
I’ve often questioned how Human Made can ask three figures for a t-shirt and I got what I consider a suitable answer. Much is lost through only seeing photos on the internet. For a brand like Human Made the aesthetic and styling are paramount when viewed this way, however much greater appreciation comes from feeling and inspecting the pieces. It reveals a well executed brand ethos, Nigo’s love of vintage clothing and I need that P. Williams crewneck sweat. A new favourite of mine is TSPTR with their very clean classic sportswear silhouettes and collegiate style logos. Expect more Peanuts inspired prints and collaboration work with Ebbets Field Flannels. Side zips were de rigeur throughout the Billionaire Boys Club collection, rendering it too abstruse for my liking.
I had earmarked Kings of Indigo having missed them last time round, and they were everything I’d hoped they’d be. Translating traditional workmanship to the now by mixing American classic jeans with a Japanese eye for detail. I was able to speak with founder Tony Tonnaer about everything from sourcing, production, sustainability and of course the nature of next season’s collection. His and in turn the brand’s passion is unmistakable as is their desire to offer an unrivalled package for everyone. I went expecting great things denim wise and was blessed with more than I could handle. Lee 101 had a 32oz raw indigo jean that literally stood on it’s own, plus some patched overalls serving as nostalgic Americana eye candy among their offerings. Japanese denim brand FDMTL previewed an exciting mix of patterns and washes and are definitely one that needs a closer look. Eat Dust, the smallest booth with the coolest dudes and best example of quality over quantity. Their One For The Road capsule is nothing short of perfect, what more can I say?
Uniformes Generale pick up where they left off in AW14 with a strong collection of t-shirts, sweats, hoodies and jackets. The future looks bright for this emerging UK brand whose online presence it second to none. Too Much London are a brand I regret having missed out on seeing, it wasn’t until after I’d left that I realised my mistake. Fortunately their Instagram offers a look at their booth, complete with a framed black & white photograph of Action Bronson front and centre. Timothy Everest had a surprise up his tailored sleeve presenting a down coat in camouflage with fur trim hood and corduroy lining. With seasonality, trend and material use relatively similar amongst a majority of the collections, this was probably the salient piece of the entire show for me and that seems like a great place to finish.
I do feel for anyone who spends both days walking the concrete floors of the Old Truman Brewery because it really is a prodigious feat of endurance. Fortunately in addition to the coffee stall and bar on site, there are plenty of boozers and curry houses close at hand to recharge your batteries. Thank you to Heather for the invite and congratulations on another successful show. Hope to see you at the SS16 show.