LONDON, United Kingdom — From the Mods of the 1960s through to the Britpop artists of the 1990s, Fred Perry has long been a favourite of British musicians. Earlier this year, in an effort to capitalise on that association, the label partnered with the cult 100 Club in London — a renowned, independent music venue that has hosted The Sex Pistols, Oasis and Mark Ronson over the years — to hold gigs.
Now, the brand is linking up with Miles Kane — a solo artist and member of The Last Shadow Puppets — on a seven-piece capsule dropping November 14.
“The attraction for any brand working with someone like Miles is that we will tap into his group of followers," says Rob Gaitt, Fred Perry’s brand director. "For some of these fans, it might be the first piece of Fred Perry they buy.”
Kane, a longtime wearer of Fred Perry, first set out to design a shoe. The idea evolved into a full-fledged collection, which includes his takes on classic Fred Perry pieces, like the piqué polo shirt and the track jacket, imbued with what the musician likens to a “1970s Italian feel, as seen in Goodfellas.” Prices range from £80 ($105 at current exchange) for button-knit shirts to £100 ($131) for the track jacket and £95 ($125) for tennis trainers.
Fred Perry's collaborations with designers including Raf Simons and Nigel Cabourn have long been a staple of the label's repertoire, starting with Comme des Garçons in 2007. Since then, the heritage brand — whose roots are in tennis — has more than doubled its sales, with annual revenues of £112 million ($147.8 million) in 2016, up 112 percent from £52.8 million ($69.7 million) in 2007.
This year, as part of a plan to attract younger, social media-savvy consumers, Fred Perry has worked to diversify its network of collaborators. In August, the label released a collection designed by Blondey McCoy, the 20-year old designer and artist behind niche skate brand Thames. “You don’t have to be famous for us to pay attention to you,” Gaitt says.