Now that Halloween has come and gone, the focus in clothing shifts from fun costumes to the practical reality of outerwear. The past few weeks have seen sudden temperature drops in the Northeast, and as November progresses it is sure that many shoppers will have thick, weatherproof coats on their minds. More than likely, many American customers will turn to seasonal favorite The North Face to meet those needs. The outdoor wear company has been providing quality protection from the cold for almost a half of a century, and during the colder months, its flagship and outlet stores are packed with jacket-seeking consumers.
This year, those shoppers will have more to look forward to than usual. The North Face has announced that its Japan Unlimited line, which was launched last year and was exclusive to Japan, will be making its way stateside. The collection’s selling point is a subtle, clean, and streetwise interpretation of the company’s outdoor heritage. Whereas many mainline North Face jackets feature strictly utilitarian designs and bright, jarring colors, Unlimited offers a more put-together, yet still playful, aesthetic. Preliminary images show a seemingly unbranded hooded puffer parka in two monochromatic color schemes: navy and grey. The company has also created its take on a classic M-51 fishtail parka, a military classic in line with trends from a few years ago. In addition to the outerwear, the collection also features assorted tops and bottoms, including a pair of tapered pants with built in belt strap and mock neck sweaters with or without branding on the chest. The menswear and womenswear lines will be available later this month at The North Face’s flagship store in New York City.
The collection’s availability in America is a landmark decision for The North Face, whose Japan-exclusive lines have been massively popular but have always been hard to purchase here, much to fans’ chagrin. The brand’s Purple Label, which launched in 2003, is the spiritual predecessor to Unlimited, with its urban take on mountaineering clothing. Customers have had to order from foreign sellers or find middlemen willing to purchase from Japanese stores and ship to America. Releasing a similar collection that can be obtained with ease after so many years of difficulty is a savvy move that is sure to generate a great deal of hype. That will certainly be good for the company and customers will have little to complain about with all the modern, mature designs to enjoy.
Do you need a new winter coat, and will you be shopping The North Face? Let me know here or on Twitter @BillChangNY