I am constantly on the hunt for new designers, especially those that produce in NYC, and while perusing the Twitterverse I happened upon Blake&Whyte. Founded in 2011 by Malcolm Beckford and Ken Macmillan, the company draws inspiration from both British and American sportswear heritage to create a collection of stylish pieces featuring some very thoughtful and practical details.
If you check out their website, you'll notice a link to their fundraising campaign. Their goal is to raise enough money to put their Spring 2013 collection into production and take advantage of the interest expressed by some really cool stores with the ultimate goal of offering the entire collection for sale online. Their video is pretty compelling, and I really like the pieces showcased in their lookbook, so I hope they are successful.
When I was asked to write a post to help get the word out about their new line and their fundraising campaign I was more than happy to do it because I really like their style and would love to see it out on the market. The design is simple which only adds to its versatility. An investment in quality is important to establishing a well-curated wardrobe and the basic pieces featured in the Blake&Whyte Spring 2013 collection are a great start (or a worthwhile addition).
One piece that particularly jumped out as a great example of the attention to detail and quality is the washed pinpoint oxford. A few of the features that I found to be particularly nice are the split yoke at the center of the back, the darts at the elbows, and the fabric stitched in as reinforcement at the places where the shirt takes the most stress (hem, sleeve placket, pocket corners, and underarms).
In response to one of the questions I asked them, the Blake&Whyte team really honed in on the style that their designs evoke. Inspired by the style icons of the 60s and 70s, they “respond to the effortless masculine style that many projected. The clothing can be pretty sharp, but the attitude is always relaxed and confident.” I think this is a fantastic way to approach menswear because looking good and feeling good are connected and your clothes are a huge part of that.
What really piqued my interest in the brand, other than the great styling and quality, is that Blake&Whyte is designed in NYC and plans to manufacture the collection here as well. Frequent readers know that I am a huge proponent of buying locally manufactured goods and supporting local businesses. This is even easier to do when the company makes some really nice pieces.
Check out the Blake&Whyte lookbook on their Tumblr page here or their Kickstarter fundraising page here for a more detailed breakdown of some of their featured items, like the oxford woven I previously mentioned. Hopefully we’ll be seeing a lot more from Blake&Whyte in the future.
Disclosure: Though I was approached by Blake&Whyte to write this post to help spread the word about their fundraising campaign, this review is entirely my own. I have not been compensated in any way for this post. Quite the opposite, I donated money to their campaign.