Helbers AW16

Fashion brand Helbers, launched in January 2016 by Paul Helbers is a simplistic collection with a focus on an essential edit of tailoring, knits, sportswear, shoes and bags. Think Acne Studios, Sandro, APC and such like.

Key pieces include a Swedish-snow coat reworked in cinnamon cotton complete with detachable lining and chocolate shearling collar, or a US navy inspired anorak in navy and dark brown cotton, matt plongé leather, down-padded wool nylon and ultra soft shaved lamb shearling are all treated with waterproof functionality.

Tailoring is fully canvassed but in a softer and more relaxed silhouette- a double-breasted Crombie coat in rabbit grey baby alpaca for instance.

Different yarns like cashmere, linen, silk, cotton and alpaca are woven together in various tweed-like combinations with jacquards and a soft, rugged and worn-in feel. Suit fabrics consist of midnight and grey wool poplins and shrunken flannels.

Knits have hammer sleeve constructions and are created in a subtle mix of plain and melange chalk, brown, grey and ink-blue coloured yarns in blends of cashmere, silk, wool and alpaca. T-shirts are in sea-island brushed cotton with inserted bias-cut panels.

Drawstring sweatshirts and jogging-pants are cut from wool cashmere sweat fabric and patched with nylon taffeta. Unconstructed peak-lapel blazers are made from cotton, wool, alpaca jersey and together with a ‘4-pocket’ trouser create a tailored track-suit. Shirts are in poplins or washed silks and sometimes with a subtle mismatch of micro checks and stripes.

Shoes are made with a good-year bench-made construction with unnecessarily details stripped back.

For bags Helbers use the traditional French-army technique of treating the yarn with paraffin is used for the canvas of the tote with vegetal leather handles and finishings, and hand-painted edges.

Each piece of the collection contains a hybrid quality and feel of “unpolished elegance” underlined by the subtle clash of contrasting fabrics- it’s rough and refined. Ideas are carried out with a carefully chosen mix of low-end and high-end materials, with a high standard of manufacturing. We like the absence of ostentatious elements to deliver an un-precious sense of appearance, but crucially with style… understated style if you will. As though you just threw on an outfit in the morning, and it happened to look good.

The essence of Helbers lies in their product ethos- designs with a tangible dose of life but with technology to enhance its longevity. We are a fan of their simplicity and high quality basics. The collection is available at matchesfashion.com priced from £225, now.

Chris Beastall

Chris is the Founder and Editor of Ape to Gentleman. His interests lie in men's style, male grooming and leading a better lifestyle - through minimalist, basic and clean design.