Belstaff, the brand best known for the Trialmaster jacket, has been the go-to for motorcyclists everywhere, including Che Guevara, Sammy Miller and Steve McQueen. So how does a brand compete with a roster of heavyweight legends?

It ups the design ante. Belstaff made quite the statement when it showed its Fall 2012 Collection in London months ago. At first glance, one might have thought that it was an entirely new label. It takes a close eye to see, and a vivid storyteller to best tell how the design team looked to the past and modernized the collection for the present. Barneys helped that storytelling come true when they invited Chief Creative Officer Martin Cooper and Chief Executive Officer Harry Slatkin to chat with Simon Doonan about the brand’s relaunch.

[[ the first thing that caught my eye? the fur collar ]]

[[ luxe materials in body-shaped garments ]]

[[ outerwear at its greatest ]]

A Fall/Winter debut collection made most sense for the brand, not only because of the Trialmaster and other outerwear classics, but also because of Cooper’s background. As design director at Burberry, he was able to expand the trenchcoat-label into an outerwear destination. Cooper took his formula and applied it to Belstaff, and in one collection, has shifted the brand’s identity.

The most frequently asked question for a brand, especially one that has undergone a drastic transformation not only in design, but in price, is this: Who is the Belstaff man and woman? CEO Harry Slatkin put it best, “its for the Range Rover Royals”. For urban men and women who love to get away to the countryside. A man that works hard, earns hard, plays hard, Ranges hard and country’s hard? Now that is a modman.

Belstaff at Barneys.

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