rudeboy skank

Fred Perry’s new collaboration pays tribute to Jamaica’s music heritage
By Alex James Taylor | Fashion | 28 March 2019

Fred Perry has joined forces with design collective Art Comes First for a special new capsule collection celebrating Jamaica’s vibrant musical culture.

Having trained in traditional Savile Row craftsmanship, Art Comes First founders Sam Lambert and Shaka Maidoh travel the globe in search of diverse inspiration that they then twist into their ever-evolving sartorial codes. For this Fred Perry collaboration, the duo chose to salute Jamaica and Rudeboy culture, which adopted the Fred Perry m12 polo as a uniform staple. Travelling to the Caribbean island to shoot the accompanying campaign, the designers rounded up members of their tribe in Kingston’s legendary record store, Rockers International


“When it came to designing this collection with Fred Perry, we thought we would soundtrack what we are familiar with when we wear Fred Perry or when we see people wearing it – it was simply Rudeboy music,” says the Art Comes First pair.

“We’ve always been fascinated by record sleeves and how much creativity each artist puts into them. Most of the time, that was reason enough to buy a record. Rocksteady, reggae and ska…. always brightens our ideas and make us feel alive.”


And the music influence filters directly into the capsule collection itself. In vivid colours inspired by Sam and Shaka’s ska, reggae and rocksteady record collection, the Art Comes First designers have reimagined the original M12 Twin Tipped Fred Perry shirt in two adaptations: the embroidered Fred Perry shirt comes in black, regal-blue and island-green and is printed with bold lettering on the back, ‘FRED PERRY M12 CUSTOM-MADE WITH ART COMES FIRST’; while the taped piqué shirt is designed in black, fire-red and chrome-yellow. Each shirt comes packaged in a record sleeve designed exclusively by the designers themselves.

The collection also boasts a pair of black braces with leather trims and a pair of Fred Perry Hughes high-top trainers, given the Art Comes First treatment with snow-white canvas, ACF patch and Jamaican-themed laces.

The collection is available now online and in-store.

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