SHOWING OUT WITH THE LATEST ‘CLEATS UP CLUB’ DROP

This week we hit up the eastside of the LBC to let you know exactly what else is up with the 213. Already this year, the guys over at lifestyle brand and boutique, Port, might have caught your attention with their stellar collab with the LA Galaxy. Now looking towards the fall season, Port sticks with the soccer lifestyle theme by way of their offshoot brand, Cleats Up Club.

Cleats Up Club describes itself as a tribute “to those who live in Sunday leagues and show up to the pub battered and bruised.” The ethos of the brand is in its very name, which to me takes on more than one meaning that perhaps perfectly demonstrates the multifaceted nature of this up-and-coming Long Beach brand. On one level, I take the term as a reference to those players who simply just can’t hang the cleats up. Its more literal meaning, however, is obviously its reference to the reckless challenge in soccer characteristic of those very players who take it a bit too far and let their passion and emotion for the game get the best of them.

Paradoxically, the brand proves to be more fine-tuned than all this overdose of emotion it takes inspiration from. In fact, were it not for its very name which pops up throughout the collection, it would be difficult to isolate Cleats Up Club as a sport-inspired brand. This, however, is the true beauty of Cleats Up Club as the decision to be less literal with its soccer heritage and spirit is what allows the brand to stand apart from all others out there.

For this time around, Cleats Up Club puts forth an expansive collection that showcases its signature minimalistic aesthetic. Limited to white and black pieces with a skull graphic motif, the offering is reminiscent of biker club attire which makes more than perfect sense for a brand directly inspired by classic American style. Ironically despite the recurring skull imagery, the whole collection has this unassuming bravado which works in perfect balance to highlight the quality, craftsmanship, and utmost attention to detail Cleats Up Club prides itself on.

As the styling and imagery of its lookbook demonstrate, the Cleats Up collection is a more mature and sophisticated soccer lifestyle offering. As such, the brand gives us no reason to hang our cleats up as through it we have something that transcends the Sunday leagues as well as our love for the game.

The collection is truly something we can take with us everywhere we go so make sure to pick up your favorite pieces here.

Photographers: @carlosquinterosjr and @derekwood
Brand Development: @portlbc (Jim Leatherman) – @ant.info (Anthony Fernandez) – @mandopalacios_ (Mando Palacios)

 

SLAM JAM & NIKE UNVEIL “BROTHERS OF THE WORLD” JERSEY

Nike and Slam Jam Socialism have collaborated on a jersey highlighting the crossover from soccer to street culture. To celebrate their “40 years of Nike Football” campaign, the Swoosh is releasing a special edition jersey just in time for Milan Design week.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with Nike’s partner for the project, Slam Jam is an Italian men’s streetwear brand founded back in 1989 by Luca Benini. The company focuses on releasing socially progressive fashion and lifestyle goods with limited edition items and highly desired collaborations. For Nike’s “Brothers of the World” campaign, the Italian imprint focused on the passion so often found in soccer and the love one feels for their chosen team.

The jersey offers an aesthetic look, featuring a white base with black horizontal lines of varying gradation tapering at the neckline. Two solid black panels run up the sides, before the solid white reappears on the back. The traditional swoosh remains aside a sleekly designed chest logo. Detail wise, the words “FAST” is written in bold black letters, inside of a red horizontal box, with the word “south” cast in unique lettering, which serves as the center logo.

The back has been left rather simple with “SLAM JAM” in place of the nameplate, and a large number “14” in bold block lettering. In my opinion, though the front is pleasing, the back seems rather dull, and the “14” mark looks cramped – a large red stain on an otherwise clean creation.

That being said, if you are looking to pick one up they will drop on April 19th, made available online at slamjamsocialism.com and at Slam Jam’s store in Milano.

A 2ND CHANCE AT LOVE WITH UMBRO’S PROJECTS COLLECTION

Umbro has been in the game a very long time. While its heyday is something I never experienced to the fullest, life luckily presents me now with what seems almost a second chance at a lost love. The new Umbro Projects collection is just exactly that as the brand brings back some of the iconic styles which will forever maintain it as an enduring presence in the soccer lifestyle world.

For this collection, Umbro has turned nowhere else but to its archives from the ’90s. Unlike most brands who would take inspiration from their design archive and just seek to reinterpret this style, Umbro has instead opted for a more faithful reproduction of design styles that are as fashionable today as when they were first introduced. Their most recognizable piece has to be their soccer shirts and crew neck tees which bring back those bold prints that made the ’90s such an unforgettable period for soccer fans everywhere. The print is unique, to say the least. From afar, it gives off the illusion of some abstract design, though on closer inspection one realizes it is simply a very creative twist on more Umbro branding.

Though the bold prints and graphics get all the attention as they should, it is the enlarged branding that transports me back in time the quickest. This collection has plenty of enlarged branding interspersed between its tees, polos, hoodies, and jackets. Each time I look at the prominent double diamond on all these items, I can’t help but remember my love for all the training gear from this era which would utilize this enlarged branding oftentimes on both the front and back of training sweatshirts, jackets, and pennies. This style is particularly special to me as growing up it was the time I spent in training where I felt more in tune with the game. I did not just want to train like my favorite players but also look like they did, as it was in simply looking like them that the experience felt that much more real to me.

These small things that I take away from this collection are what makes it so exceptional. It is a part of me and no doubt also a part of you that now crosses over from these memories onto the field to the impressions you hope to make on the streets. The entire offering should look right at home with a natural street aesthetic mixed in with a little prep style.

All pieces are for the most part statement pieces meant to be worn on their own. Think of it as an opportunity to put new soccer enthusiasts on some real game with the best part being that you don’t even have to say anything. The new Umbro Projects collection is available now at umbro.co.uk.

  Via Umbro.