Fashion / Streetwear

Independent streetwear hits the high street

By emma gorton ellicott, Monday Oct 21, 2019

Representing the Bristol independent streetwear scene, Parlez have launched a new collection as an instore designer brand for high street giants Urban Outfitters.

Sitting alongside sportswear legends including FILA and Adidas, the brand was founded in 2012 by Cav Bunkhall and Will Clinkard and is going places.

The new Garboard Fleece from the AW19 Parlez collection, £110

“It’s amazing,” says Will, commercial director at Parlez. “Urban Outfitters are transforming themselves at the moment and are moving their focus to smaller independents, alongside their own brands and more established names, whilst keeping their offering consistent and looking good.

“It gives smaller labels, like us, a chance to reach more people who will be in to what we make, which is always good. We knew Urban Outfitters was the right fit for us and they were really excited to have us on board.”

With backgrounds in fashion designs and the menswear fashion industry, Cav and Will founded Parlez with a shared passion for streetwear.

Outgrowing their first space at Pithay Studios, Cav and Will now run a working studio in Lawrence Hill, combining a warehouse space with offices and a photography studio.

Bristol’s DJ Polo playing a set at the Parlez launch at Urban Outfitters

This latest collection for Urban Outfitters features items from the current autumn collection and a few selected pieces exclusive to the Urban Outfitters range.

“The latest season continues the progression of our brand,” says Will. “Our design influences usually start with vintage sportswear and from the world of sailing, one of Cav’s passions, and combine them with other visual inspirations, which can be massively varied.

“For the latest collection we wanted to refine and develop our logo work, taking reference from late 80s and early 90s British and American sportswear and outdoorswear design.”

Parlez founders Cav Bunkhall (centre) and Will Clinkard (right) at the Parlez launch at Urban Outfitters Bristol

Parlez are creating their own technical patterns, custom designed and built for the brand, using a cut and sew process instead of printing and embroidering ready-made items, with creative director Cav saying: “Our main focus has been to really push our cut and sew collection to the next level with mid-weight jackets, coats, fleeces and lightweight shirts.

“The range features colour blocked jackets inspired by early 90s sportswear and windbreakers, with an up to date and wearable palette. The outerwear is accompanied by hoods and sweats on premium fabrics and t-shirts carrying a range of the brand’s signature minimal embroidered logo graphics.”

Designer Cav’s favourite item from the AW 19 Parlez collection, The Gybe Jacket, £150

To celebrate the launch of the in-house Parlez collection, Urban Outfitters Bristol hosted a party with local DJs, including Jenny Wade, Revrt and DJ Polo.

“We reached out to local artists, producers and DJs, it’s great to give exposure to the thriving music scene Bristol has,” says Will.

Parlez believe Bristol’s huge music and art scene inspires Bristol’s fashion to have a very varied but distinctive look

With a strong sportswear aesthetic and high-quality pieces, the Parlez collections suit the Bristol loo, without having to go that extra mile into the day-glo world of festival fashion, whilst keeping on top of the latest streetwear trends.

The Parlez collection is available from Urban Outfitters (selected stores and online) and at www.parlez.co.uk 

Read our fashion editor’s blog No Debutante

Read more: Mens Streetwear brand Parlez clothing hold first sample sale

 

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