1818: ROUND TWO
Life has been so incredibly busy for me at work this last month, that I have gotten a little behind with some of the things I wanted to cover. One of those things is this year’s publication of 1818, Brooks Brother’s online magazine.
As I mentioned last year when reviewing the debut issue, I applaud Brooks Brothers for their savvy in recognizing the boom in online shopping. This magazine not only provides this market with products to purchase, but gives them background and information on these products as well, thus creating a new generation that is educated on the history and tradition of these fine clothes.
The magazine opens with Boston Uncommon, an amazing photo shoot in Boston featuring their clothing. This alone is going to win me over. Although I’ve only been to Boston once, many years ago, I have a romanticized love and infatuation with New England, and Boston in particular. I like to blame this on Barry Manilow (because of his song, Weekend In New England). Regardless of the reason, I love most things Boston, and so this photo shoot was perfect. It was a double win because the clothes in it are so amazing.
Companioning the Boston photo shoot was a great article on the Head of the Charles Regatta – often referred to as rowing’s Holy Grail. This year marked the 50th anniversary of the race, and this article covers its history and evolution over the years as it has become one of the premier rowing events in the world. I’ve never been to the HOTC but it is definitely on my bucket list.
One of the more interesting features in this issue of 1818 is the cover story, a wonderful dialog between Mad Men’s John Slattery and their costume designer Janie Bryant. The conversation was a fun way to get to know the man behind the Roger Sterling character. John, by the way, grew up in Boston. Are you following a theme here?
The magazine also features three of Brooks Brother’s clothing lines, Black Fleece, Red Fleece and Saxxon Wool. I’ve mentioned before how I struggle with Black Fleece. I’ve always found the line to be too much of a deviation from Brooks Brother’s classic, traditional, iconic look. It tends to be more trendy and mainstream, which makes it sort of common, while at the same time leveraging a higher price tag. I’ve had a difficult time in the past finding anything that I would actually wear from this line, which has been disappointing, but this year that has changed some. There were a couple of items that at least caught my attention and have potential. I also must say the women’s clothing in this line looked spectacular.
I’ve been more impressed with the Red Fleece line. This is a line designed to bring Brooks Brother’s classic look to a younger generation, and I think, for the most part, they succeed. I’m disappointed that they have tailored in the cut of some of the pieces, but I do understand that that is, unfortunately, a sign of the times and where young people are. That aside, I love many of the sweaters, and pants from this line, and the shirts are nice, except that they sport the narrow collar point that I dislike, but is so trendy today.
I was happy to see their Saxxon Wool mentioned again in this issue. The farm boy in me loves the history of this wool and its sheep, and I could spend days wrapped in these sweaters. They really are amazing.
Finally, I loved the article on Brooks Brother’s women’s pink oxford shirt. It shows how the company pays attention to the needs of its customers and does its best to meet them.
This second issue of Brooks Brother’s 1818 magazine, did not disappoint. It provided background to their products, while being entertaining as well. Most importantly it continues to introduce a wider, and younger, market to Brooks Brother’s great look and style, in an online format that reflects the lifestyle of that market. Well done Brooks Brothers!
***What are your thoughts on Brooks Brother's online 1818 Magazine?