Since its debut in 2009, Herschel Supply Co. has evolved from an indie backpack manufacturer into a globally recognized brand, with a number of high-profile collaborations to prove it: Mark McNairy, Vans and Apple, to name just a few. Today, the company introduces its first trademarked fabric called ApexKnit, a flexible, high-tensile jacquard yarn that will shape three models bearing the Herschel Supply Co. badge. Among them is an entirely new silhouette called the Dayton, a large-frame backpack with infused padding and a waterproof zipper that runs down the center. But most notably, says founder Jamie Cormack, the face of the bag features just four seams.
“The biggest benefit with the new fabric is that we can really focus on the shape of our bags,” says Cormack. “We wanted to remove as many components as possible [for the new collection], eliminate seams and cut down on the weight. The utility and the feature sets are all there, but the fabric has allowed us to craft an athletic, progressive look.”
Considering the recognizability of the company’s Little America silhouette, which plays off iconic mountaineering backpacks from the ’70s and ‘80s, many will find the ApexKnit aesthetic foreign territory for the brand. According to Cormack, however, the new fabric is the premium expression of the design principles that have always driven Herschel Supply Co. “I’ve never thought of us as a heritage brand,” he says. “I see Herschel as a utility brand, and this is the top fabric we’ve used to date.” The new ApexKnit collection ranges in price from $50 to $200.