Saturday, May 11, 2013

An Open Letter to Drakes

Dear Drakes,

I’ve been wearing your goods for years. Even though most times it was private label, I could still tell that it was yours. The size of the pocket squares, the quality of the silk or linen or those delightful marriages of silk, wool and/or linen—these ingredients would pretty much convey that the goods were sourced from you.
My little mugwump, LFG, was bound or swathed in at least two, maybe three Drakes lovelies when I playfully shot this keeper.
Scarves...textiles...adornments. See, Drakes, we're cultivating your future constituency.
I’d say that most of my Drakes goods have come from sartorial daddy Alan Flusser’s shop over the years. My paisley silk scarf is one of those things that I’d grab if the house was on fire. It’s one of those that deserves being passed down to one who’s important to you.
And speaking of passing things down. I bought this one…another one of your brilliant things…from the Flusser boys as a Christmas gift for my damn self. And I passed it on to someone who deserved it…within sixty days after I bought it.You should appreciate this, friend expressed an admiration for it that was so well stated that after she and I exhausted all possibility of procuring a twin, I sent it to her. And the kicker was that she had already decided who would be the next steward of said Drakes scarf…her grandson. He's still in single digits but isn't it nice to think that his grandma's already holding things precious for him. If he's like me and he grows to love a story and appreciate lore, maybe his grandma will print this one and put in the box with the scarf. Shut up.
So it ain’t just about textiles, Drakes. It’s about creating things that are so rich in color and texture and quality that from moment one, they communicate endurance and legacy and a worthiness to be passed on. In this era of throw away Bangladeshi sweatshop, urban ironic poseur goods, you, Drakes, are an oasis of everything not Bangladeshi sweatshop. So thanks for that.
And Will over at A Suitable Wardrobe always offers a well curated selection of your contrivances. I love Will’s online shop and I’ve bought shoes from him but mostly I go there for what I call a pick-me-up. You know the strategy…when you don’t have the money for new shoes, get a shoe shine and you’ll feel like you’ve got a new pair. When I don’t have the big dollars to bespeak a jacket or buy a thousand dollar pile of toy soldiers, which is more the rule these days, I’ll go over to see what Will’s offering and treat myself to a little surcie. 
It’s always fun to discover the packet in my mail pile. Will’s branding brandishes the exterior and the journey from California is just long enough for me to let its impending arrival slip my mind.
Beyond a reasonable inventory of pocket square standards, you, Drakes, offer a stable of whimsies that are right down my fuzzy alley. Dance steps in multiple colorways? Bingo. I’ll have the orange, please.
So why? Why did you have to go and tart it up? The quality of your offerings is second to none. The colors, textures…hell, I’ve already said it. Shit. You had to go and print the word Drakes on the actual item. Please stop this.
Do what others often do, if you must at all. Attach a discreet branding badge elsewhere. Give us the option to then remove it—like I do with pocket squares—or keep it—like I have with larger scarves. I’ve worn every freakin’ logo known to man and I’m not proud of it. If it ain’t my monogram, I don’t, with two exceptions, wear logos anymore.
I know, I know. All a y’all are saying, “Damn ADG, is this really that big a deal? Just tuck the Drakes brand into your breast pocket so that it doesn’t show.” That’s not the point. The point is that your goods, Drake, carry your name and your brand and your enduring quality without you having to say it for them. It’s rather like Lady Margaret Thatcher said about being a leader. Chances are if you have to say it, you aren’t.
LFG and I are wrapping all of this in love, Drakes.
Onward. Saturday. At home for a change. Warping-Wefting-Wafting...mixing colors, textures, patterns and such.



LPC said...

I love that thingie with the dance steps and I am with you in this lament. Brands chase Burberry status, and the resultant monopoly logo profits. And it's horrid. Barbour is the worst offender, IMO.

Anonymous said...

Tragic. Appalling. TACKY.

If you're looking for signatories Max, I'm happy to add my name to your protest document.


Anonymous said...

Agree. I drove race cars for years and was paid to be logo'd. Drakes speaks for itself no need to logo. Besideswhich(grad school and law school at real Palmetto State
USC) we in the know know and those not in the know never will. All logo is a form of "Big Ponyism"

Sir Fopling Flutter said...

I'm not a fan of the new-ish logo either. I prefer the previous version.

Anonymous said...

Maybe an embroidered animal patch- sewn on- that you could remove or leave as you chose- something distinctive, maybe a reptile of some sort? Or has this already been done elsewhere?

Squeeze said...

Have my suitcase in the closet loaded with Paul Press pocket squares from J.Press, from the thirties on, many of them Welch Margetson with a batch of India Batiks. Suggested to G. Bruce we do a coffee table book with his encyclopedic frame of reference. Maybe sell them and move to Barbuda to reread Mencken, Fitzgerald and Philip Roth for the rest of my life.