Paul Smith is a name that doesn’t get a whole lot of blog love, rather unfairly in my opinion. A hugely versatile and wearable brand, their aesthetic ranges across the sub-labels from mainstream and affordable (Paul Smith Jeans) to high-end couture (Paul Smith Mainline), via several “street” focused labels including Red Ear, PSST! and the great R.Newbold.
One of my favourite labels of all time, R.Newbold had one of the strongest and most unique looks coming out of the UK in the 90s. In 1991 Paul Smith bought the Shaftsbury Works, a factory founded in 1885 to create military uniforms and workwear by Robert Brewster Newbold, and in 1993 they launched their R. Newbold label. Helmed by Ian Pailey (later to create One True Saxon and Garbstore) it pre-dated the current trend for replica militaria and work wear with modern takes on long forgotten classic items, it was hugely influential in the way I thought about clothing and paved the way for labels like Maharishi who would go on to dominated the UK streetwear scene. Sadly by the late 90s R.Newbold became exclusive to the Japanese market becoming impossible to get outside of the country, however, over the last few years its been creeping back into international markets through the Paul Smith stores and collaborations with people like Oi Polloi and Goodhood.
For their third collaborative process together Goodhood and R.Newbold present a durable, workmen inspired range that includes plaid shirts, chino pants, a leather bag and wallet, cotton, screen printed tee, and a black down jacket. Although not quite as forward thinking as the label once was (its almost cynically Japanese in design and the Aztec theme is beginning to get a bit exhausted) the quality and attention to detail remains, it also brings a colourful and fun element that’s missing from a lot of today’s streetwear. It’s a welcome return and a collaboration I hope continues for many seasons to come.
Available now from Goodhood