Good news for all the yachtsmen out there… Henri Lloyd have pushed the boat right out to bring us some of the most advanced sailing garb we’ve seen yet.
It’s called the Fremantle collection, and it consists of some big jackets, some slightly smaller jackets, and what might just be an Oi Polloi first… salopettes.
Merging progressive details like Gore Tex Pro fabric with design cues from the archives, this stuff is modern, technical gear that actually looks good.
It’s available on Thursday the 13th of June. Until then, here’s a quick interview with man-with-the-plan Magnus Liljebad, as well as some photos courtesy of Michael Mayren...
What is this Fremantle stuff? What’s the story behind it?
We wanted to have something recognizable from our heritage but make it into a contemporary functional collection. Fremantle is inspired by the gear Dennis Conner wore when Stars and Stripes won the Americas Cup in 1987 in Fremantle.
There are a lot of pretty specific details on this gear – what are the kinds of things that you’ve got to think about when designing clothes for sailing?
Traditionally sailing clothes tends to be a bit over protective and therefore quite heavy and stiff. We wanted to make clothes that are light and very comfortable but still protective enough for what they are meant to be used for.
"Fremantle is inspired by the gear Dennis Conner wore when Stars and Stripes won the Americas Cup in 1987."
White jackets with stripes seems like quite a traditional sailing thing. Where does this come from?
I think it's mainly about aesthetics (and perhaps the early trends that sort of defined sailing and marine clothes) but it could also have something to do with visibility. Henri Lloyd have been using stripes for a very long time so for us it feels natural to use it.
Henri Lloyd started out in 1963. How has sailing gear changed since then?
I would say the ‘breathable’ fabrics are the biggest change – combing waterproofness with breathability.
Another thing is the use of more water resistant features like silicone cuffs and zippers. I would also say the fit is a bit more anatomically designed these when moving around. There are also much lighter waterproof sailing clothes today - in the past it was kind of impossible to make light waterproof clothes.
Where do you see it going in the next fifty years? What will the ‘future sailors’ be wearing?
I think the layering principle will become much more common and improved. Sailing is a little behind here compared to outdoor clothing.
I also see a general decrease in weight for the sailing clothes. There will still be heavier ones on the market depending on the type of sailing they're designed for, but everything will go lighter. New ways of making fabric lighter and stronger are coming up all the time.
We wanted to make clothes that are light and very comfortable but still protective enough for what they are meant to be used for.