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HUNTER ORIGINAL – SPRING 2016

September 21, 2015
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If you can remember them afterwards, British music festivals can often be wonderful. Trouble is, they are almost always extremely wet: Forget Burning Man, think Soaked Everyone. Today Alasdhair Willis evoked these dubious delights by creating a runway of trodden mud on which he relived the three stages of typical Brit Festival experience via the medium of clothes.

First, optimistic anticipation: In they bounded, wearing ripstop fishtail parkas in sunny degradé pastels under a deludedly light layer of deconstructed outerwear. This included a powerful remix of the trucker jacket in shades of olive and camo. The shoes, a key category for Hunter, included an interesting hybrid of desert boot and the specially-made Vibram sole used on the label’s heaviest-duty Wellington—here rendered in pastel panels for fashion consumption.

Next, post–inevitable downpour, came adaptation: Rubberized coats peppered with drawstring ringlets and botanical flecked semitransparent parkas wreathed in guy rope ribbons were meant, said Willis, to give the impression they had been hastily assembled to fend off the rain. Wellingtons appeared, in more degradé pastel. Camo parkas in crunchy-to-the-touch treated nylon obscured, rather unfortunately, a fine section of colorful patched gingham shirting.

By the end, sheer abandon had set in: It’s still raining, but Hell Yeah. A medley of oversized baseball jackets-meet-ponchos came variously peppered with patches (including the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine) or with suspended fringes of more ribboning.

Hunter’s metamorphosis from farmer’s favorite to front row draw (Salma Hayekand Luke Evans were among the attendees today) began when Kate MossSienna Miller, and other It Brits started wearing the company’s Wellingtons at Glastonbury a decade or so ago. So riffing on that transformative moment seems a fair way to advance Willis’s ambition to further Hunter as a youthful lifestyle brand. Backstage he recalled his own first festival: “Glastonbury, 1985. I saw Echo & the Bunnymen. And it didn’t rain!” Some guys have all the luck. Written by Luke Leitch for Vogue.com

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