SeaGreen: Hello LA
Words and Pictures by Jasper L
SeaGreen is all about California. It’s surf and skate inspired, and in this case it’s the fabrics that make the product. Light, soft, unstructured; lots of paper blends and fabrics that are heavy on the texture add - if you’ll allow me to go full-on Mr. Porter - a casual vibe of luxurious, west-coast laziness to wear on your off-duty lifestyle days. Is that enough buzzwords?
It’s a Japanese brand, made in Japan, designed by Masanako Sakao, the same guy who designs Tatras - and that’s really all I know. Unfortunately, my thirty second “interview” with the brand rep is really just a recording of the horrible music in the pavilion and my own, overly chipper voice. The brand’s web presence is minimal and it was only started in 2012, and despite the emphasis on Californicana (if that’s a word) there don’t appear to be any American stockists.
Everything is cut to be relaxed and easy-lookin’ and slouchy, slouchy, slouchy. It’s a firmly streetwear brand - and the Tatras influence is evident - and the clothes probably look better if you own several surfboards. The focus is on knit and loungewear, like the soft cardigans, hoodies, and easy drawstring pants. There are also washed denim shirts with subtle prints, as well as light outerwear, like an unlined peacoat and a collection of slim down vests done in nice wool fabrics.
I’m picturing the pants paired with Vans and maybe a tee under one of the loose-gauge knits, for those chilly beach nights when you’re sitting on the sand, staring at a bonfire (or ditch the shirt and grow out your hair, if you’re interested in replicating the lookbook). SeaGreen is maybe less romantic and less directional than some of the other brands I’ve covered - or rather, the romance is quieter; more starry eyed and dreamy and quotidian - but there’s certainly space for such a perspective. I think it would fit in with a number of styles - if you’re wearing Engineered Garments and TS(S) you’re set, but I imagine it would mesh equally well in your wardrobe if you favor brands like Robert Geller (another Tatras connection there) or even Nonnative, White Mountaineering and Junya Watanabe. Or just wear it with Levis and canvas slip-ons: there’s a definite lifestyle on display in the small booth, down to the surf posters and potted plants that bookend the clothing racks.
So, California-as-done-by-Japan has been seen before, right? Well, SeaGreen isn’t the super-heavy motorcycle stuff we associate with repro brands, nor does it have any of the backwoods nerdery of the heritage and workwear usual suspects. It’s heavy on Los Angeles, and also on vaguely “Native” inspiration - a keyword that appears in capital letters and encompasses, I imagine, both the knitwear patterns and the leafy prints that cover some of the jackets. Regardless, you’re certainly not going to mistake it for Hollister. Most importantly, based on the criteria by which I judged every brand I looked at in Florence; when I walked out of the booth in my slim jeans, boots, and wool fisherman sweater back through the uncomfortably overheated pavilion in search of relief, I wished I were wearing it.
Visit the SeaGreen website at www.SeaGreen-LA.com for more information.