The Spanish luxury brand Loewe just released a new collection of menswear and accessories inspired by the great outdoors. Its new Eye/Loewe/Nature collection is crafted using technical materials and showcases vibrant colors and graphics, which are intended as a permanent addition to its lineup of well-made leather goods and clothing. While the prices and construction reflect the brand’s high-end DNA, the designs nod to classic athletic and mountaineering styles pioneered by American brands in the last decades of the 20th century.
Loewe isn’t operating in a vacuum. In recent seasons, many luxury designers have chosen to incorporate design cues from the outdoor industry into clothing and accessories. As Jacob Gallagher, the Fashion Editor at The Wall Street Journal’s Off Duty section put it earlier this year, the trend originates from a consumer need. “Utility and function have become the two dominant characteristics that people want out of their clothing,” he said. “What I really like about it is it’s a trend that has a real functional value to it.”
The Eye/Loewe/Nature collection is chock-full of luxury versions of outdoor classics. Zip-off cargo pants retail for $950, recycled-cotton sweaters list of $690 and a water-repellent parka hits a mark just under $1,400. The collection’s range of accessories — including backpacks ($1,290), totes ($1,150) and slings ($890) — are all crafted in Japan from durable leather-trimmed canvas.
If you’re used to shopping at Backcountry, these prices may seem high, but they makes sense in the context. A respected fashion house is riffing on outdoor apparel and accessories, making a range of functional luxury goods. And as far as trends go, functionality is certainly welcome in the high-end market.
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