The Classicist: Barbour Launches the Ltd. Edition Steve McQueen Collection
EXCLUSIVE PREVIEW: Two icons of authentic sporting style come together in classic British outerwear brand Barbour's cool new limited edition collection designed in homage to the great Steve McQueen, set to launch this fall. In celebration of the 75th anniversary of their iconic International clothing range, which the King of Cool wore while motorcycle racing in the 1960s, the capsule collection of 19 pieces features several new jackets, shirts and sweaters inspired by archival photos of the actor racing motorbikes and driving his collection of classic sports cars. McQueen first donned a Barbour International jacket when he represented the United States team in the 1964 International Six Day Trials (ISDT) motorcycle race in East Germany. The ISDT (now known as the International Six Days Enduro), one of the most challenging moto racing events in the world, requires each rider to cover 200 miles a day over hellish terrain.
Prior to the event in '64 Steve McQueen and other members of U.S. team stopped off in London and bought six-pocket Barbour Internationals, derived from a one-piece racing suit first offered by the firm in 1936, as a defence against the vagaries of European weather. McQueen quickly became enamored of the International's weather-defying qualities and rugged utility, wearing it in several grueling moto races over the years. Classic images of McQueen in his Barbour grace the linings of the jackets in the new collection. Standout pieces include the Penton (above, $799) and Baker ($599) waxed cotton jackets featuring stars and stripes linings and U.S. flags on the left chest, faithfully recreating the jacket that McQueen wore in the '64 ISDT. Two other wax cotton jackets, the Trophy ($429) and the Greenham ($399), reflect McQueen's effortless style on and off the racecourse. [cont'd]
Gallery: Barbour Steve McQueen Collection
Also included in the collection of jackets are the Enduro ($1,299), a rugged washed leather jacket, and the Hilts ($329), a black quilted jacket modeled on one worn by McQueen in a famous photograph which appears on its lining. The chambray Inferno shirt ($169) features a photo of McQueen on the inside yoke and references the workwear classics he made into icons of casual men's style. Ditto the Melrose shawl neck cardigan ($399) with leather buttons and a U.S. ISDT patch. Rounding out the collection are t-shirts with classic McQueen moto racing imagery as well. Specific retail locations for the pieces in the collection have yet to be determined, though we'd be willing to bet Barbour's cool new downtown NYC store will get some; meanwhile check www.Barbour.com for updates.