Thursday, 12 February 2009

In Praise Of The Pendleton


Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a huge fan of vintage American workwear. Show me a piece of antique Filson or classic Carharrt and my heart skips a beat. A pair of 'Key' brand dungarees can dangerously raise my blood pressure. But nothing compares to my love and devotion to the Pendleton brand.

I've already mentioned my feelings about plaid - and Pendleton does plaid better than anyone. After over a hundred years in the business, the number of different colourways and weaves that they have produced is incredible, and the quality of their wool is second to none. These are little masterpieces of design and colour.

In the States, Pendleton has been around so long, and has been so much a part of the mainstream, that it has been largely ignored by the fashion crowd. Recently, there are signs that people are starting to appreciate the brand's heritage and the quality of the product. Nike produced a small scale collaboration with them last year, and Urban Outfitters have started to sell them in their vintage department. 

I think that there's still a huge amount on inspiration to be found in the Pendleton back catalogue. I've seen ivory on white 'ghost' checks that echo Margiela, beautiful autumnal tartans that put Ralph Lauren to shame, and this - which has got to be one of my all time favorites.


I'm always attracted to shadow plaid - as it has a graphic quality that always looks modern to me. But I've never seen a shadow plaid in bright teal before. It turns a simple jacket into a piece that could easily be found in a Comme des Garcons show. Truly stunning.

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