Thursday 30 October 2014


The 'D'Arblay' jacket is a meeting of minds between (originally Merthyr) now Soho based Weekend Offender and ourselves The Casual Connoisseur
A collaboration which may have surprised one or two and even caused a little stir along the way. Ruffling a few feathers is no bad thing though, and with the respective backgrounds of these two labels it should come to be expected. Both of these brands tend to do their own thing, do what they/we like, which is a refreshing attitude. 
Some out there may even have thought these two labels were in some way 'rivals' or competitors perhaps? so it's good to see two brands like this working together and mixing things up. Hence the 'Two Tribes' tagline which comes with this project. Like a lot of ideas, this one started where else? but over a pint. 
We met Sam and Rhydian from Weekend Offender via a mutual friend and first met them at a London trade show - whilst these places are full of respected brands and great people there's also, I dare say, a bit of 'Nathan Barleyness' going on in the wonderful world of menswear. These stuck out as like minded chaps with very similar interests and backgrounds and we hit it off with them.  
Like many typical 'Northern' lads, we always enjoy a jaunt down to the capital city, even when it is sometimes work related. I love visiting the smoke and was impressed by their flagship store right in the heart of Soho, it's a great area, around the corner from Berwick Street and Beak Street - two famous shopping streets from down the years, and a nice set up. Not to mention great old London boozers too.
When we were approached about doing something together, it made a lot of sense. With that in mind, we came up with several ideas, but not wanting to be overly ambitious or, in any way trying to reinvent the wheel. We settled with a classic item for Autumn, a timeless garment, fusing a few styles - a parka, mac, raincoat, call it what you want, something which befits both of our surroundings, it's both smart and casual. 
A versatile piece you can dress up or down, perfect for walking around the big city or strolling around the little market towns of England. A wardrobe staple you will return to again and again. This is a special edition one-off release which comes deliberately in limited numbers. Made from a waterproof rubberised bonded fabric but without the bulky, heavyweight and sweaty feel of many similar style coats. This is a refined silhouette which gives a nice flattering look to the wearer. 
Named simply after the base where both brands meet, the 'D'Arblay' jacket Comes in Navy and a very limited run of Yellow. Features include two outer pockets a large peaked hood with throat tab. Branding is kept pretty minimal, with dual branded press studs and exclusive 'Weekend Connoisseur' label - a take on both brands logos. The inner features a pocket for your smartphone and artwork inspired by the original Frankie Goes to Hollywood single 'Two Tribes Go To War' with an illustration of Lenin in his CC hat and WO jacket, tongue in cheek as always! DC

The jacket will be launched first at the Soho store (19 D'Arblay St, London W1) on November 1st. Come along for free beer, good vibes and a free 'party pack' from 1pm.

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