Saturday, October 18, 2014

All About Style! | Abercrombie, Woolrich Christmas 2014 Collab...

         STORIED ALL-AMERICAN outdoors heritage is exemplified in quintessential, quality spirit, with the interwoven ethos of Abercrombie & Fitch and Woolrich, in this latest collaboration of fine wears and gear for men, Woolrich With A&F. Bearing the mark of Woolrich design in step on blazed trail with A&F style, this limited edition collection encompasses classic flannel shirts, a backpack and a carry-all bag, and blankets of utmost exceptional materials, construction, and character...

"Introducing Woolrich, one of our favorite brands. Woolrich has been synonymous with quality outdoor clothing for over 180 years and is one of the original brands carried by Abercrombie & Fitch during its first years of business. This limited edition collection serves as a dedication to both Abercrombie & Fitch and Woolrich, two establishments rich in heritage. Each item in this collection was made with the finest, hand-picked materials. Drawing inspiration from the Woolrich archives, every design balances iconic details with updated, on-trend fits and fabrics." - abercrombie.com
"From simple wool socks to our famous cold-busting parkas, Woolrich products have embraced the authentic outdoor lifestyle for more than 180 years. We strive to design functional, comfortable and durable sportswear and outerwear for Men and Women using traditional fabrics like wool, cotton and down. [...] As the oldest continuously operating woolen mill in the United States, the Woolrich Mill provided wool blankets to Civil War soldiers, and continues to produce some of the country's finest wool blankets today. Over the years we have pioneered many clothing styles that have become American Classics, a number of which are still popular today[.]" - woolrich.com

































As the blankets' beautiful stitched label, headed by the distinguished Woolrich and Abercrombie & Fitch logos, furthers, "In 1830, John Rich built his first woolen mill in Plum Run, Pennsylvania. He sold quality fabrics to loggers, miners, rivermen and hunters. Rooted in Northeast traditions and Ivy League Heritage, the Abercrombie & Fitch legacy is steeped in American history and defined by exceptional quality since 1892. Originality and authenticity make us proud, and today Woolrich and Abercrombie & Fitch join together to celebrate just that. Woven True. Then and now."

The collection is undeniably superior and captivating with its embodiment of transcendent, classic, timeless traditions in premium, enduring attitude. It's beautiful to see such fine work at Abercrombie & Fitch, whether in collaboration with another establishment of reputable style or on its own, since the days of the Ezra Fitch collection (2004-2006). This limited-run Woolrich With A&F collection arrives furthermore upon the threshold of Christmas/Winter 2014 and is an outstanding purveying of specialty goods in the greater offerings of this wonderfully unfolding, truly awe-inspiring Abercrombie & Fitch holiday season to be...

Stay FIERCE!

P.S. Get to know more of Woolrich, explore and shop, at woolrich.com (here)!

All About Style! | FIERCE Intense Concentrated Cologne...

The FIERCE Intense lined up at the ready, abercrombie.com.
         THE WORLD'S HOTTEST fragrance gets intense! For the first time in the history of its globally iconic and revered awe, Abercrombie & Fitch has introduced FIERCE Intense, an utmost high-concentration form of its classic and signature FIERCE scent...



FIERCE Intense profile, abercrombie.com


In regards to its olfactory format, FIERCE Intense is promoted as a "concentrated cologne" and being "our strongest, longest lasting fragrance" - a higher concentration of the FIERCE scent in cologne form. This is peculiar, however, given the fact that when a scent is in its purest, concentrated, longest-lasting form, it's a parfum. Contrary to prevailing layman understanding, a parfum and eau de parfum (right underneath parfum in concentration hierarchy) are not solely for feminine scents; they are merely types of a fragrance concentration. Being as they are, masculinity and femininity constructs polarizing everything, people have in recent times conformed with the idea that parfum / eau de parfum / "perfume" is for them (women) and "cologne" is solely for a man. No. Perfume is all scents, masculine or feminine, created for giving a desired odor to your body, whatever, and "fragrance" is used interchangeably. Recent time has just attached an incorrect and misleading feminine connotation to the term "perfume" in English. Who knows why, and it's really dim-witted and funny that it is so in English considering the fact that while the word can trace its origins to the Latin per fumus ("through smoke"), because of Anglo-French cultural relations (including linguistic and French holding prestige in English since the Norman conquest), it could have come into English by way of French considering France had become the center of the development and refinement of perfumery practice after it made its way into Europe by the middle of the 2nd millennium. That and the fact that French culture and language would become an ideal of all aspects civilization by the latter-centuries of the millennium. The feminine scents-driven bloom of the industry by the modern era and marketing surely contributed to the thought of "perfume" as feminine as a generic term for eau de parfum of which women's fragrances were basically made in standard; the French term parfum is masculine, people, and by definition is of all created scents for desirable use. (Note that le parfum is French for perfume/fragrance and parfum is also the French for the purest fragrance form; it just depends on the context in which you use the term). Certain masculine fragrances can be worked as eau de parfums and have in the higher strata of the industry (i.e. Dior HommeTom Ford NoirTerre d'Hermes, etc.) and are more complex, bold, and price reflective; cologne is just for playing it safe and easy. Nevertheless, one must also consider the fact that many male fragrances take to a main prominence of citrus family notes within the formula, and that is also what defines an eau de cologne with a use of such in an overall formula of low concentration generally anywhere 2-5% of essential oils. However, cologne may linger rather lengthily, despite the low concentration, depending on the notes and also the climate. But here's the curveball: Colognes can be in light or more form. Also, regardless of the concentration for a masculine scent, sellers are well known to just slap it with a "cologne" label out of conformity even when venturing into eau de toilette territory (4-8%, give or take, and in between eau de cologne and eau de parfum) or higher.

Priced at US$118 for the only exclusive volume offering, 1.7 fl oz, FIERCE Intense was "sold out" rather fast after its release in the American market though, by the publishing of this post, it is still available in the United Kingdom, for example, with a price of GB£118 (rounding to US$190) – a strongly commanding premium price of parfum territory. The only parfum Abercrombie & Fitch has ever sold is the upscale, feminine EZRA scent at 0.5. fl oz for US$108. But even then, FIERCE Intense can't hardly dethrone EZRA parfum which, were it sold at 1.7 fl oz, would have been at a price much higher than anything around the world A&F asks for FIERCE Intense. Furthermore, if FIERCE Intense can be sold at 1.7 fl oz with an above-though-so-near price to what EZRA parfum sold for at 0.5. fl oz, then it is seemingly not the truly purest, strongest, long-lasting A&F Fragrance ever in the technical sense of what a parfum is and what is EZRA parfum. However, "our strongest, longest lasting fragrance" can hold validation within the context of considering the current lineup of available scents. Furthermore, a limited-edition higher concentration of FIERCE cologne – a very valuable, valuable and internationally renowned scent – at 1.7 fl oz would indeed command a most fittingly...intense price.

FIERCE Intense is only the latest installment in the impressive expansion of the acclaimed FIERCE fragrance label: the first move came in Christmas 2010 with release of the body care duo FIERCE hair & body wash and aftershave; cologne volume was expanded to 3.4 and 6.7 fl oz by 2011 and releasing a limited edition 500ml by Christmas 2012; and 2014 has experienced the most expansion undertaking with a candle, spin-off scent FIERCE Confidence, and now the classic scent concentrate form. The all-new addition's exclusive standing in composition and limited-edition release furthers premium attitude.

And with the holiday season just around the corner now, who needs mistletoe when you've got FIERCE...

Stay FIERCE!

Friday, October 17, 2014

News Now! | Abercrombie Website Upgrade...

         YESTERDAY, ABERCROMBIE & FITCH unveiled the enhanced abercrombie.com online experience! The format upgrade heralds an new, intelligent, smooth attitude complimenting the aesthetics of graphics' nature now in the mid-2010s. At abercrombie.com, its a new form of exquisite higher sophistication with a fitting level of elegance in enthralling movement and ease; it's to obsess over...







Elements movement on the all-new homepage
feat. a translucent "sticky" nav. bar.




Personal account and shopping features access
in clean, clear minimalist form.




Mens and Womens divisions continue in form introduced in February,
though side menu has been more appealingly spaced.




Purely beautiful. This sums up the clean, classic aesthetic of the
new enhancement incorporating an elegant play of white and bright
and light tones with bold, sophisticated dark grays.






Item presentation continues in form as introduced in February,
though it and the new upgrades work beautifully for a
highly pleasing shopping experience.



The introduction of the all-new superior upgrades – reaffirming sophistication and higher-grade ethos – comes at a time right before the arrival of the Christmas 2014 fashion season which, #THEHOTTESTBLOG points out, will incidentally be ten years after the introduction of Casual Luxury. Back in the Letter from the Editor from earlier this year introducing a perspective on what was to come this year, it was pointed out that "history does not repeat itself, but it does echo" – as in 2004, Abercrombie & Fitch has in 2014 been pushing to reaffirm its footing in the industry, and we've witnessed many new progressive initiatives throughout the year hitherto in pursuit of the realization of that effort. This site enhancement has got to be the most beautiful of the many happenings yet, and it comes at a time when ecommerce is more critical and growing than ever and only as result of ever advancing technological influence in the consumer lifestyle; it falls inline with continuing to capture and grow direct-to-consumer business with intelligence and appeal.

In more closer terms of graphics, truly the most ingenious thing from a visual and navigational perspective is the beautiful full-stylized brand label centralized with quadrant-organized, perfectly positioned lead links. Furthermore, the double row main-with-supplementary links placement has been format familiar to abercrombie.com since the Casual Luxury years...



Screenshot of abercrombie.com during Christmas 2005.
Seen here is the aesthetic during the pre-Christmas 2006 Casual Luxury period.
The site was redesigned Xmas 2006 to full white.


As you can see, so has the norm of utilizing three spaces, underneath the home image, for promotional material. Because of the way they hide by scrolling down on this new 2014 upgrade, it also reminds one of those on gillyhicks.com during its early online store days; those were individual frames, though, that were hidden except for a slight portion at their top and would rise up when nearing the cursor to them, and the website was Flash Player enhanced really sophisticated and beautiful. Anyway, it's highly intelligent, the homepage and site navigation format.

"My first time on abercrombie.com was during Christmas 2005 in December. I was 14. I'll never forget it, captivated, and I've always loved and been inspired by it of then, and the Casual Luxury years in general. I grew up an Abercrombie guy during the Casual Luxury (A&F) and Classic Cool (a&f kids, then initialized "a92") micro-era, and it'll remain with me forever. It shaped me in a lot of ways. And Matt was the lead model of my first ever season foraying with A&F, and he has since then and forever will be my utmost favorite A&F model of all time: to me, he's the exemplary ideal of the Abercrombie & Fitch man, in the modern era, as captured by the lens of master Bruce Weber. He was highly prominent for that campaign and for the inauguration of the first A&F Flagship, Fifth Avenue. Rookie Dreams of Greatness, by Bruce, focused on him and was sold at the flagship; Matt signing copies. He's my ultimate favorite, and no one comes close. (I could say more, and my love of Jessica Perez and other models, including my most recent obsession with Fall 2014's long-haired, fair-faced beauty poised in easy-fit sweater, fine floral skirt on wicker chair, is a totally different discussion). Anyway, personally I'm a mind majorly of bold sophistication, brooding, and romanticism, and the aesthetic of the pre-Christmas 2006 website – it was entirely redesigned for that season – had that with my first visit there featuring the Xmas 2005 campaign with its attitude. It's classical Abercrombie to me, and I always look to it for inspiration and reinterpretation. I feel like this 2014 upgrade on the site has brought an updated attitude from the mid-2000s: utmost sophistication – dark grays and light tones, with compelling design – fitting of the time, and I am very impressed and appreciative of that. I'm also literally OCD and will seriously stare legitly admiring the corner of a tab or the certain space and placement and form of letters/words, lines, movement, whatever else have you in design wherever on screen or out there live, for an obscene amount of time. I am beyond impressed and obsessed with this new 2014 upgrade, and I strongly feel it will definitely encourage more time spent on and more visits than already by the fans and newcomers alike. It's sure got me." - C.E.R., Editor-in-Chief, The Sitch on Fitch

Stay FIERCE!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

All About Style! | Ezra Fitch Forever...

The great Erza Hasbrouck Fitch, co-founder of Abercrombie & Fitch Co.,
who incorporated the company in 1904 with David Abercrombie (who had originally
established it as Abercrombie Co. in 1892) before David walked out
in move of fate and left Ezra as sole owner in 1907.
         THE MID-2000s were a truly beautiful period at Abercrombie & Fitch that marks whomever experienced it as a privileged fan for the ages. Flourishing after the folding of the A&F Quarterly (1997-2003), a micro-era was ushered in heralding a new stage witnessing an unprecedented concentration of ultimate creativity with heightened exclusivity: the manifestation of near-luxury ideals; ever-fresh all-new marketing season after season, Spring Break, Summer, Back-to-School/Fall, and Christmas/Winter; creatively-daring-yet-classic diverse merchandise with various unique, heritage-evocative, beautiful back-stitched labels; backstage beginnings of international expansion plans for the near-future, and the opening of the first A&F Flagship on the world-renowned Fifth Avenue; Hollister very much establishing itself as the authentically coolest brand for the exclusively popular teen kids in school, RUEHL taking its first steps, and Gilly Hicks in inspired, sophisticated development as A&F's Cheeky Cousin for women 18 and up. All solely in America. Those were truly the days, and at Abercrombie & Fitch, the defining Casual Luxury branding theme commanded the ethos of the brand with notes of genuinely premium spirit.

The zenith of the such alluring attitude at A&F was the ingenious, premium Ezra Fitch label collection of wears for men and women. Named after the godman eponymous co-founder who solely lead Abercrombie & Fitch Co., between 1907 and 1928, into its golden years during the greater Sporting Goods Era, the label commanded premium price points in double-and-everywhere-triple-figures featuring goods incorporating even higher-grade materials, detail and construction to purvey exceptional pieces to stand the test of time and style...






























Debuted at Abercrombie & Fitch stores and online abercrombie.com upon the July 14 launch of Back-to-School/Fall 2004, the Ezra Fitch goods were featured in the premier A&F Magazine issue for that season – that publication was shortlived to only two issues after that, and the brand would only mail out catalogs before finally discontinuing all publications in 2007 – which tied together all elements of the campaign; it was worn with A&F pieces by the models and profiled young rising stars in it. (The issue proved itself impressive in the years that followed in the industry for having been so precise with the majority of its selection of young men and women, in the greater marketing, who achieved reputability in acting, singing, and modeling: Taylor Swift, Kellan Lutz, Tyler Hoechlin, Chris Carmack, Justin Bruening, Michelle Trachtenberg, Hillary Rhoda just to name a very few of the whole notable repertoire who were in the campaign). Select individuals were also chosen for campaign photography which was also hung on the walls instore and each carried a personalized line, "[actor's name] for Ezra Fitch."



The issue features an intro by a supposed eponymous grandchild of the co-founder.
A young Kellan Lutz is seen on the opposite page as photographed by Weber.
Image, C.E.R. for The Sitch on Fitch, September 2013.





Chris Carmack as one of the main marketing models.
Top image, Bruce Weber for A&F. Bottom two, photos by
C.E.R. of his Fall 2004 A&F Magazine, September 2013



The Ezra Fitch collection also came to encompass a line of fine fragrance for men and women. These were the masculine EZRA FITCH in cologne form (3.4 fl oz, US$79.50) and feminine EZRA in eau de parfum (3.4 fl oz, US$79.50) and utmost purest parfum form (0.5 fl oz, US$108; the most expensive fragrance offering ever from the Company)...








All three were packaged in a protective, hard, dark-brown box cover, which went over the bottle-inset bottom, with an embossed silver-color label on the front, "[fragrance name] by Abercrombie & Fitch." EZRA FITCH furthermore featured leather wrapping around the sophisticated flask-esque bottle, and the EZRA bottles were of exquisitely designed glass with a metal neck (eau de parfum) or wrapped fine string (parfum), geometric top, and a metal bottom-nameplaque.

The only flagship ever to have featured Ezra Fitch was A&F Fifth Avenue (opened for Christmas 2005) which more cultivated the near-luxury ideal at a time furthermore featuring Casual Luxury at the forefront of marketing. Creative design for merchandise and advertising for Ezra Fitch, too, featured the distinguished font for "Casual Luxury" (A&F) and "Classic Cool" (a&f kids; then initialized "a92") and signature to A&F though no longer much used at all in the 2010s.





Top two images, Ezra Fitch cargo shorts for a trip to Hong Kong,
A&F Flagship included! Images by Patrick M.
for The Sitch on Fitch, 8 June 2013.

Snapshot of interior A&F shopping bag, Christmas 2006,
with Casual Luxury promo card. Image by C.E.R.
for The Sitch on Fitch, 9 October 2014.



During the time, it was said that there were some similarities between the Ezra Fitch label and what was purveyed by RUEHL No.925 – an upscale, sophisticated Greenwich Village-inspired concept, by Abercrombie & Fitch, which launched on September 24, 2004, and targeting adults ages 22 through 35. Both did reflect the pursuit of higher-end aesthetics at their utmost which came to light that year at the Company; design-wise, utilizing leather as a key note (i.e. premium jeans' exterior back label, jackets, accessories, etc.); and just generally a more sophisticated, creative, premium spirit venture above even the flagship Abercrombie & Fitch brand. Nevertheless, Ezra Fitch maintained in line with the essence of A&F while RUEHL was city business casual and trend fashion. It could be said that Ezra Fitch bridged between Abercrombie & Fitch and RUEHL. However, both Ezra Fitch and RUEHL also came to be unfortunately shortlived.

Ezra Fitch was discontinued by 2006, and it was never really evident that the Company planned on making it an established micro-label within the Abercrombie & Fitch brand. (RUEHL was anticipated to grow to become a great contributor to the Company as it was launched as a lifestyle brand, but things just didn't go as planned and shuttered in 2010). The only continuing remnants of the Ezra Fitch label were its fine fragrance line which was continued to be sold until being ultimately retired in 2007.



Some Abercrombie & Fitch stores continued to sell off their Ezra Fitch fragrances
well into the first weeks of 2008. Seen here, sample strip of EZRA eau de parfum
from instore January 2008 with Spring 2008 mega-size shopping bag.
Image, C.E.R. for The Sitch on Fitch, October 9, 2014.


Since then, the Ezra Fitch label commands a niche cult following within the Abercrombie & Fitch community very much as RUEHL No.925 would after its closure. Fortunate and privileged are the fans who experienced it and are obviously an exclusive set of their own for having done so apart from future Company fans who have gained interest in it afterwards. Items for resale, through ecommerce venues such as eBay, vary, but the rare fine fragrance come with rightfully staggering asking prices depending on the amount of previous usage.

Ultimately, Ezra Fitch was one embodiment of the concentrated storm of exceptional, exclusive genius at the Company during that benchmark, classic, golden period what was the pre-Recession mid-2000s. With it's timeless spirit, it inspires through the years with reminisce as being one from a time when creative awe was alive with a push for upscale, higher-grade, premium, exclusive quality and style through marketing and merchandising; fans of the today who experienced it utilize it, along with other concepts of the period, as a sort of reference point, too, in analyzing the A&F of the present and how it stands today...that is what a classical period represents for within its respective culture, and that is what the mid-2000s became with Casual Luxury and Ezra Fitch. #EzraFitchForever!

Stay FIERCE!

P.S. Make sure to check out the Ezra Fitch Facebook community page for more pics and details, (here)!




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