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New York Fashion Week fall 2013 menswear highlights

February 17, 2013|By Adam Tschorn, Los Angeles Times

Few polo shirt logos have the lasting resonance of Lacoste's alligator, but men of a certain age will remember one that came close: Boast's embroidered pot-leaf-like logo (the company says it's a Japanese maple leaf, by the way), which launched in 1973 with polo shirts and shorts for the East Coast tennis set. At the height of the brand's popularity in the mid-1980s, it was an instant signifier of swagger that radiated bad-boy attitude.

Now Boast has been revived with a team that includes Andy Spade (co-founder of the Kate Spade and Jack Spade brands) as creative consultant and investor. The relaunched brand first hits retail with the upcoming spring-summer collection, but it's the fall-winter wares that mark the foray into a full-blown men's and women's apparel collection.

That's the collection that was presented at the august Harvard Club during fashion week. It was all about an Ivy League aesthetic grounded in navy blue and muted red with bright accent pops of blue and yellow in a range of rugbys, polos, blazers with gold logo buttons and bright yellow elbow patches. Varsity jackets boasted a bold yellow "B" and mixed fabrication pieces like sweaters with knit sleeves made from repurposed hockey socks.

As one observer pointed out in advance of last weekend's rapidly approaching blizzard, while the collection was chock-full of light outerwear and preppy layering pieces, it wasn't exactly the kind of clothing suitable for an East Coast winter.

Then again, for a brand trying to bring back that cavalier I-don't-care attitude of a few decades ago, bracing for Winter Storm Nemo in a not-pot-leaf logo somehow seemed just right.

adam.tschorn@latimes.com

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