agi & sam’s capsule collection for lacoste l!ve is everything we’d hope for and more
As their collection hits stores today we talk to the dynamic duo about their creative vision.
Another day, another collaboration; but it doesn't get much cooler than the latest pairing of London-based menswear designers and i-D faves Agi & Sam with iconic French label LACOSTE L!VE. The result is a sophisticated take on modern day sportswear, rooted in strong tailoring and a love of textiles. Keen to pay tribute to the man who started it all, the dynamic duo, who founded their eponymous label in 2013, tapped into archives of iconic inventor René Lacoste, studying his prowess as a keen tennis payer as well as his relationship with textile designer Robert George, who created the famous crocodile logo all those years ago. They were particularly taken with a collection of beautifully drawn stripes in red, white and blue, which they have made the basis for their own capsule collection: a 13 piece wardrobe that comprises outerwear, sweaters, shirts, T-shirts and shorts. Playful in its use of strong colour blocking and bold patterns, it's this season's must have. Here the boys share with us their creative vision.
How did the collaboration come about?
The collaboration came about after a meeting with had with the Pentland Group about working together on a shoe project for Lacoste. We pitched our idea and the team felt this should be a bigger project than a shoe, so they got us to meet with the team in Paris and it all started from there.
What references did you look at when designing the collection?
Our main reference was the entrepreneurial nature of Rene Lacoste. Not only was he a very talented Tennis player, he was a pioneer in innovation within Tennis, introducing the first metal racket, ball returning machine, and also one of the first men to use branding a way to push his own brand: Lacoste, we wanted to delve into his life and reimagine his life based on other art forms that were happening in Paris at the time. This led us down the path of fine art, and looking at some of the greats of the time that resided and works in Paris around that time, Picasso, Jean Arp.
Could you describe the collection in your own?
The collection is based on the hand drawn stripes found in the archive of Lacoste. He worked closely with a designer called Robert George, who actually developed the infamous Crocodile logo for René. We pulled apart the collection in the red white and blue of the French flag and created a juxtaposed collection of panelling, reversible garments and highly technical outerwear.
What is it about Lacoste that appeals to you as a brand?
The thing that appeals to us most about brand Lacoste is it's rich history and cultural heritage. It is one of the most premium and desired sportswear brands to date. The stories as well behind Rene's revolutionary thought processes and attention to detail gave us a plethora of design inspiration.
Who is the ultimate Agi & Sam x Lacoste customer?
Someone who loves technical sportswear, but also enjoys the feel and look of luxury formal menswear. The combination of tailoring and outwear, with sportswear shirts allow this collection to be very function, but also look extremely premium.
How do you want your customer to feel in the clothes?
The collection should make the customer feel cool and also cool. The first cool should be to actually be able to function in a city, running for buses, riding bikes, and also living your life, but the second cool should be to actually feel and look good. It should be a clean combination of both.
How do you think you've evolved as a brand since inception?
We've moved on a lot since our inception. We've definitely matured a lot since the beginning and we are looking now to build a brand that can sit as a life style, rather than a niche brand. Even our subject matter has gone from being solely a joke to a joke that contains quite a strong message.
The Agi & Sam LACOSTE L!VE FW16 capsule collection will be sold at WerHaus in Barcelona, Dover Street Market Ginza in Tokyo, I.T. Beijing Market, Cartel 011 in Sao Paulo, as well as Lacoste Champs-Elysées and Lacoste Le Marais in Paris, Lacoste Knightsbridge in London and Lacoste e-commerce.
Text Tish Weinstock