Urban Outfitters has certainly polished its hipster image as of late—think offerings by Gant and Mark McNairy—but its latest collaboration, with venerable menswear retailer J.Press still ricocheted through the tradosphere with a mix of surprise and excitement. Mikito Takeshima, creative director for J.Press since 2005, talks about the collection influenced by the likes of Take Ivy and Animal House.
From $28 to $148, at Urban Outfitters
What was your process for updating these classic pieces?
Fit is a key element—playing with the proportions. But I also updated the design details, like tab waistbands and the flap pocket detail on the button downs, which were developed in the 1930s as basic details and became popular among Yale students in the '50s.
Why has the collegiate look
remained so timeless?
I see the Ivy League in the same vein as traditional English looks, in terms of origin in styling and in fabrication. It's not really "fashion" nor a passing trend, it has a transcendent appeal. They represent value, quality and the lifestyle of those men at elite universities during a great era. Tradition is always appealing to men.
Is the partnership ongoing? What piece would you like to take on next?
Personally, I'd love to continue. And I'd really like to look into updating the classic three-button sack model. It's a J.Press signature and it would be great to offer sack suiting in an updated fit and a variety of fabrics.