Four stylish men’s brands fit for the beach
Anticipating the high summer heatwave, we look to the colourful beachwear collections of Mami Wata, Arrels Barcelona and O.N.S. with a new smart sunshade from Vilebrequin
Whether you’re heading pool-side or planning a city staycation, a summer sabbatical is the perfect time to upgrade your trunks and t-shirts. With this selection of modern maritime stripes, graphic patterns and artistic illustrations, one thing is clear – beachwear is no longer restricted to tropical R and R.
South African-based lifestyle label Mami Wata is dedicated to beach culture and African surf. Launched in 2017, the brand – named after a West African water deity – works to support the continent’s rich crafting culture by manufacturing on a small scale with ethical African factories. Bringing business to the local beaches, they encourage surf tourism in Africa. ‘Africa is the final frontier of surf exploration. If you’re looking for raw surf adventure and exploration, Africa is one of the final places where you can experience that,’ says C.E.O and co-founder, Nick Dutton. With patterns that range from the subtle to more strident, including surfing animals and the brand’s banana logo, Mami Wata is a key player of this season’s summer staples that work just as well for the beach and the streets.
Every season Arrels Barcelona works with a line-up of ten artists, giving them full creative license to create the collection’s colourful patterns. With an aspiration to have their swim shorts be walking works of art, co-founder Javier Llaudet explains that the designs are made for more than just a dip in the blue – they’re made for summer as a whole. This season the sartorial selection includes everything from Jean Jullien’s breezy sense of humour, depicting a man melting in the summer heat, to Quentin Monge’s pattern ‘Blue Nereids’, featuring a series of water nymphs frolicking in the sea. Whether you want to flex the remnants of your fine art A-levels or focus on absorbing some vitamin D, these are the trunks to do it in.
O.N.S x Leah Goren
The must-have capsule collection of the summer comes courtesy of O.N.S and artist Leah Goren. A California native, Leah took her West-coast beach vibes and mixed them with O.N.S’s New York DNA to create motives of relaxed skaters and Rockaway beach surfers for the brand’s latest collection. ‘I wanted to show vignettes that evoked a warm summer day. The crowds of people on the beach, the skate park right in front, drawing while watching my friends surf,’ Leah explains. An all-American homage to the East and West Coast, we think that the array of printed tees, bright swim shorts and retro camp collar shirts in beachy silhouettes make up the perfect wardrobe to get through the dog days of summer.
Vilebrequin x Fatboy x Miasun
Founded in 1971, Vilebrequin continues to embody the carefree spirit of Saint Tropez in the Seventies. In recent years, the brand has collaborated with top designer names including Virgil Abloh at Off White and Jean-Charles de Castelbajac. It’s also been working hard on its sustainability efforts, introducing a range of swimming trunks made from 100 per cent recycled polyester filament spun from plastic waste recovered from the Mediterranean sea. Now the brand is teaming up with Miasun, recently acquired by Fatboy, the producers of the comfy outdoor weatherproof furnishings (the most popular being their outdoor nylon pillow). Miasun’s French founders Hortense Pontabry and Valériane Voirin dreamed up the idea for a compact, easy-to-carry and lightweight sunshade to replace a traditional cumbersome parasol, printed with a distinctive Vilebrequin design in nautical navy and white. Weighing only 1.3kg, the fold-up sun shade is made from natural cotton canvas with a UV filter, blocking out 94 per cent of harmful UV A and UVB rays, and packs easily into a beach tote, and its simple shape is engineered to be wind proof of gusts up to 40 mph. §