Friday, October 22, 2010

Hickey: A Quick Retrospective

For a brand that virtually no longer exists I sure do talk about Hickey a lot.  After reading Angelo's (one of today's foremost Hickey historians) post today I did get a little nostalgic, I'll admit.  If people are still writing blogs in 20 years or so, which is up for serious debate, I would not be surprised at all to see quite a few The Trad-esque style posts referencing Hickey as one of the great brands of our time that unfortunately feel by the wayside.  There is a great tradition of men's clothing brands that rose almost as fast as they crashed and Hickey is no exception.  I'll spare you any excessive praise, but if you really want to read about one of my favorite brands ever you can hit the tag at the bottom of the post.  The purpose of all this, however, was to draw your attention to a great video circa early 2009.  Below you can watch Hickey's extremely talented Design Director, Aaron Levine (now with Jack Spade), talk about the concept behind the brand at one of its Pitti Uomo showings.  Looking back, would Hickey do things differently?  I, obviously, can't answer that for them, but I truly hope they wouldn't change the clothes all that much.  This stuff was, and still is, perfect.



-L.A.S

17 comments:

  1. Straight up, though I wish the brand were still going strong, I like the idea of owning some pieces from a line and designer that probably won't be reconciled. If nothing else, my teenage son can stunt on kids like "homie this is vintage Hickey, you don't even know what that is."

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  2. Their logo was atrociously retarded.

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  3. Anon @2:21- Good thing they only put the logo on stuff like polos and random ties.

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  4. ^ I never could get past the pot leaf logo thing. It's the only reason I stayed away from the line.

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  5. Lawrence - when the brand first started out, the logos were on what seemed like everything - buttons, linings, etc. It wasn't until the last few seasons that they started to tone it down a bit.

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  6. R.A.- Really? I don't remember the knits or shirts having excessive branding. I own a few early Hickey shirts and the only pot leaf is way down on the placket. You would never know it was there.

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  7. Yeah the pot leaves fucked it all up for me, too. Plus this was a line designed for people under, say, 40, and there's just not that many people under 40 in this country who a) have enough money to buy this stuff, and b) have good taste. And people with more money than taste just went to J Crew and bought cheaper versions of the same thing.

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  8. My favorite part about Hickey chinos was the inside pocket on the right leg of the pants -- absolutely perfect for storing condoms. After all, they did call the brand Hickey. Ba-zing!

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  9. "...there's just not that many people under 40 in this country who a) have enough money to buy this stuff..."

    Would people comment more on this? How much is a man supposed to spend on his clothing (as, say...a percentage of income)? I keep asking people this question but no one will answer. I am a member of the younger crowd and make a ton for my age (27), but just feel guilty every time I spend a few hundo on clothes. But clearly some of these clothing lines are aimed at my demographic.

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  10. Hickey was pretty great. I tend to "grade" a brand by the quality of their chambray shirt. These days everyone makes one, and I'm pretty sure it's a fine litmus test of how well put together their stuff is and how well it fits. Hickey made the best.

    Also, to Anonymous 4:06 -- My feeling on this (it's a thing I grapple with, too) is best resolved by a friend of mine. A few years ago he bought two pairs of Red Wing GTs in two colors. Aside from a couple re-heelings and regular polishing, he hasn't had to buy any other footwear in that entire span of time. When you do the math, the investment is a pretty sound one.

    Obviously there's overpriced stuff out there but I think the movement in men's style these days salutes the smart dude making a good investment. Spend more, buy less. It'll last longer and look better.

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  11. Hickey made some cool stuff and I am sad it did not work out better. My only gripe is that the sizing was really annoying. I know I will get slammed for this-- but as a customer of regular HF and HSM, I ordered some Hickey items that ended up being so incredibly slim fit that I returned them and never bothered to order from them again.

    I like the idea and I wish HF and HSM would work the hickey style into their regular product line.

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  12. Re spending money...I've found that you actually get more than you pay for, runway fashion excepted, of course. A $200 pair of pants will last 4x as long as a $50 pair, and they'll fit twice as well. So you will look better, longer...

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  13. I am glad you like the video...I am the producer and but it is customary to provide credit when you embed someone's video. Thanks

    Mark Abouzeid, Photographer & Journalist
    www.markabouzeid.com

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  14. i have a hickey jacket, and its shade too small. but i love it. its like the coolest jacket I own and i would give anything to get a size larger. but alas, the brand is gone :(

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  15. it's sad that this brand is gone. their Henley shirt is seriously nice waffle knit, with horn buttons.

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