The swimshort of the season
Menswear’s man of the moment, Adam Brown, the founder of dapper swimwear brand Orlebar Brown, has teamed up with the Queen of Prints, Laudomia Pucci for a collaboration to be proudly championed round the poolside. With the collection just dropping in the region, we had a chat with the creative brains behind the summer’s most sought-after trunks.
How did this particular collaboration come about?
We were introduced by a mutual friend who had a passion for both brands. The next thing I knew we were planning a collection together.
Tell us a bit about the prints you chose for this collaboration? (Baiadera, a 1978 pattern, Labirinto, a 1965 design that singer Isaac Hayes once wore as a cape onstage in the early 1970s, and Dischi, born in 1967)
The choice of the prints came quite literally as Adam (Brown, founder of Orlebar Brown) already had a vintage man’s swim trunk from the original days in a Baiadera yellow and orange print. I just thought it made sense to propose other prints from the seventies that my father used mostly for men’s wear at the time.
Did you find your approach to prints was different because you had a male customer in mind?
Exactly so. The prints are smaller, less swirly and less recognizable than our classic Pucci prints. The whole collection has a more unisex resort feel that I like to it, which I believe is very Pucci – and will always be.
You mentioned previously that Orlebar Brown and Pucci’s customers are similar, how so?
I believe that Pucci and Orlebar have in common a “happy moment in life” the holiday, the sea. For us we’re very Mediterranean, and for Orlebar Brown, they’re very Anglo-Saxon. but it is always a celebration of a great moment.
So, what prompted you to work with Laudomia Pucci on this new collection?
It all came about quite organically actually. I’d always loved the Pucci prints. A couple of years ago a friend of mine asked me (as a favour) to make him a pair of shorts for his partner using a piece of vintage Pucci fabric. We made them and I sent them off. They looked absolutely fantastic but I thought no more about it. Unbeknown to me the friend was also a friend of Laudomia Pucci’s and they ended up around the same pool that summer and she saw the shorts. She emailed me, we met up – and the project developed from there.
Pucci’s more known for its womenswear, why team up with Pucci for prints?
I think that was part of the attraction. There are so many collaborations but the only ones that are really interesting are those ones which enable you to see all parties in a different light. Take them to a place they would not normally inhabit. Pucci is an iconic Italian brand. Steeped in heritage and a real celebration of that dolce vita lifestyle. We are a young, British brand, still primarily male orientated whose story (although holiday focused) is rooted in the principles of classic tailoring. Although Orlebar Brown has always included print and pattern, we are also primarily about flat colours or photographic prints. The Pucci type of print is something we have never done before and one that really enables us to push the boundaries of our OB Classic shorts.
What was your input in regards to the prints?
We worked together on choosing the prints for the collection. We selected prints that represented Pucci in the 1960’s, yet would be wearable now. We spent some time together in the Pucci Palazzo exploring their archive and selecting prints we thought would work well for Orlebar Brown. We also really loved an image we had seen of Isaac Hayes wearing the Labirinto print on stage – we just had to use that one. It really was a mutual collaborative process.
How do you think the collection will fit in the Middle East?
This collaboration is a celebration of colour – the palette is hot and exciting. The collection is a combination of both British and Italian heritage, which is acknowledged and appreciated by our Middle Eastern customer. We bring together these two elements in a well thought out and creative way. In the past, we have seen our OB Editions; print and photographic styles, become quite popular in the Middle East. The vibrancy will definitely fit. Boutique 1 is one of the most innovative and iconic stores in the world so the perfect place to launch this collaboration.
From Dhs1,260, available exclusively at Boutique 1