Budding menswear brand LVL XIII continues to pick up steam as a luxury sportswear label. The upscale collection boasts singer Jason Derulo as brand ambassador whom, alongside business partner and creative director Antonio Brown, recently expanded into apparel to supplement the collection’s footwear assortment. For fall ’17, the duo launched its latest line in an exclusive retail partnership with Bloomingdale’s.
Derulo and Brown both note the camo backpack, which doubles as a convertible jacket, as their favorite style in the collection. Other pieces for fall include transitional raincoats, slim-fit joggers, LVL XIII graphic tees, and a convertible puffer coat which can be waist-length or knee-length. Color blocking, camouflage and chevron stripes make up key design features while neutrals like black, grey and white make up the bulk of the color palette.
Footwear News caught up with Brown and Derulo at the GQ x Bloomingdale’s LVL XIII launch event.
Footwear News: Do you have any favorite pieces in the collection?
Jason Derulo: “There’s two pieces in particular. One is the jacket that turns into a book bag. That one is really special. You step into a room that may be a little hot, you want to do something with the jacket. You don’t want to put [it] around your waist, you don’t want to wrap it into a ball. You turn it into a book bag. But also, what I wore in the “Swalla” video, the raincoat jacket.”
FN: What’s the overall shoe message this season?
Antonio Brown: “So, for us it’s really important that we stay futuristic and that the brand represents a utilitarian theme and aesthetic and that’s what we did with all the footwear. We tried to keep it very cool, very futuristic, very luxury.”
FN: What was your creative input for the footwear line?
JD: “To me, it was about creating something that was a little left-field but very upscale. Something that you can not only wear to the club but also if you want to look nice to an event you can throw on the sneakers. If you have a simple outfit on you can throw on the sneakers and dress your way up. The sneakers are pretty much a statement and every pair of shoes has something different that you’ve never seen before. Honestly, Antonio’s instinct when it comes to footwear is not only spot-on but is revolutionary. Though I had my touches on it, he was very instrumental in the shoe designs.”
FN: I see a pop of red in the shoes. Can you talk about the color palette?
AB: “We have red. We have camo in the back. All the shoes are named — those are the “arrows,” those in the back are the “golden dons.” So, it’s a big variety for us. Something that represents what our brand stands for which is pushing the boundaries and perception of artistry within the world of fashion.”
FN: How has it been working with Jason?
AB: “It’s amazing. He’s a great guy. It’s been an amazing opportunity and I really love working with him. All around, he’s an amazing guy, very creative.”
FN: Have you started thinking about spring? Any hints of what you have coming?
AB: “We are working on spring so it’ll be dropping pretty soon. The color palette is very unique. We are bringing in some teals and real cool pops of color. It’s still transitional. We broke down some of our fall, winter looks into short looks.”
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