The second coming

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The second coming

Postby ramseames » Wed Feb 12, 2014 12:51 pm

Been thinking about doing this thread for a while just as a place to dump things as they release/so I get to nerd out about them a little more and when Balloons asked for someone to give a rundown about them it seemed timely. So, here we go:

http://www.soph.net/

Sophnet. was founded in 1998 by Hirofumi Kiyonaga, who worked previously as an assistant to Jean Touitou at APC. The name was originally Soph. but in 2002 it was changed to its present form. The word soph refers to two different things; Sophistication, which has obvious implications, and then sophomore, as a second coming of menswear. From an interview http://hypebeast.com/2010/8/sophistication-hirofumi-kiyonaga-hiroshi-fujiwara with Hypebeast: "If I look around, much of menswear’s foundation has already been cemented. Shirts, jackets, pants, they’ve all based on a pre-established pattern. Where my job lies is in re-arranging the design to create something new." This is reflected in the way the brand takes things and reinvents them, in terms of putting materials typically used for one garment on another or creating something no one would have thought of before. Within Sophnet there are 2 labels besides their mainline: Uniform Experiment, which is a collaborative project with Hiroshi Fujiwara (probably the single most important person to Harajuku culture and Japanese street fashion) and is not substantially different in terms of its overall scope. From the same interview, Fujiwara said; "between ue and SOPHNET., I think it’s best to think of it this way. uniform experiment falls under the SOPH. umbrella so there are bound to be some similarities." Especially this ss14 season there's a lot of crossover between the 2 but certain elements like stars and the colour chart are unique to UE and they also do a small amount of military inspired stuff with the branding UE navy. And then the third brand they have is called Football Club Real Bristol, which is a collaborative project with Nike started in 1999, based on the idea Kiyonaga had of developing an imaginary football club (Bristol has 2 actual clubs called Bristol City F.C. and Bristol Rovers F.C., neither of which have any connection to soph) and producing uniforms and gear as fashion products. The pieces are obviously very distinct from mainline soph/UE in that they include actual soccer kit/warm up gear, but they still do things like a 2 button blazer and traditional shirting (complete with a large BRISTOL logo on pretty much everything).

http://www.uniformexperiment.jp/index.html

http://www.fcrb.net/

If you click the collections heading on all 3 sites it'll link you to ss14 with a menu on the side going back to aw10, and they also have a products heading which lists every piece from most of those seasons.

Soph to me is a very complete brand. They're one of very few out there where I think you could literally have a wardrobe full of nothing else and look good on basically any occasion (besides black/white tie stuff), because they do suiting, casualwear of pretty much every sort, a large selection of denim, warm coats, leather goods, athletic wear, footwear, undergarments, etc. Certain design elements are very distinct and you'll see them repeated over and over again in different ways; the use of a specific width of stripes/their placement on a certain part of the body http://imgur.com/a/x5Qh6, the way they'll combine multiple patterns together into one http://imgur.com/a/27EKc, the devision of a garment in non symetrical/standard ways http://imgur.com/a/yoiKV, UE's star patterning (often on the left sleeve/side of a piece) http://imgur.com/a/x1zmG, the colour chart http://imgur.com/a/G1EA0, and then less immediately visible stuff like the second chest pocket inside the main one http://imgur.com/a/KEV8e (all from aw13, soph doesn't take their own pics of that so there's none in their archive) and the little d-ring on on the belt loop right of the fly http://imgur.com/a/fNM6y.

They've done loads of collaborations over the years with various other brands http://imgur.com/a/TnaDd, some of which like UE x carhartt happen every season in some form.

In terms of quality/pricing, its not a reproduction brand so that's not the absolute first priority, but everything is generally very well made. The attention to detail in particular is quite high, very rarely are you just getting a basic button down shirt with no bells and whistles. And when you do buy something plain (they have a permanent product selection they're doing every season) its significantly cheaper as a reflection of that (button down this season with camo paneling costs 23k yen but a basic one is 16.8k). The other big thing about the pricing is that we pay a significant premium for it to get it anywhere outside of Japan. One would assume this would partially be the fault of the stockists but its true pretty much across the board so who knows. Soph has 13 stores of their own in Japan and 1 in Hong Kong, but has largely resisted expanding outside of Asia other than letting a select few stores pick them up and I can only assume if we had more access to it it wouldn't be quite so expensive. I think especially at the JPY pricing its pretty damn good value in terms of the overall product, so its not really fair to look at what Haven or Union are carrying and go "wow that's obscenely priced". That being said it reaches sales every season and there's a considerable market for it used in Japan if you're willing to buy from proxies/consignment stores.

woah. that got long, and suddenly its 1:50 am.
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Wed Feb 12, 2014 1:13 pm

Fuck it i'll keep going a little bit, i'm already up too late.

They were acquired back in may by Jun co ltd https://www.jun.co.jp/ http://hypebeast.com/2013/5/soph-makers-of-sophnet-f-c-r-b-and-uniform-experiment-acquired-by-jun-co-ltd. Says in the article its supposedly going to lead to more expansion which would be sweet but nothing has come of it yet (not that you'd expect anything, its too soon).

Album of stuff I own:
Spoiler:
Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

The socks are just socks. I paid too much for what they are but they're still a pretty decent pair and I got 2 lookbooks and a mug with them so I'm happy with my purchase.

The watch was probably too expensive at retail but I think it ran me like $150 on ebay which is fair. Mostly bought it because I wanted something inconspicuous for this trip I'm currently on but I have zero desire to wear a shitty timex everyday and I feel like getting a seiko or a braun or whatever is sort of a compromise because eventually I'm going to spend real money on something and I'll never wear anything else again.

The bomber was $140 which is a steal considering even in japan its like $300 normally. Cut is a touch more to my liking and the lining is fun/more unique than the standard orange which I like.

The flannels are the real deal though. Paid $230 for the border panel one (stripes) and $190 on ebay for the spray check (overdye) and they're both totally worth more than that. Finishing is fucking great, cut is superb (if a bit short, they're making them for small japanese dudes), collar roll especially on the border panel is just so good, and they're very comfortable to wear. Both are a 4 and the BP is a little bigger than the SC but not a super substantial amount. I don't see myself buying flannels from anyone else in the future at this point.

For whatever reason, all of this is UE stuff. I don't really know why.
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Re: The second coming

Postby nick » Wed Feb 12, 2014 1:17 pm

i'd like to like Soph more, well, what I see on Rakuten of them, but a lot of the offerings seem a bit too basic, in a Uniqlo kind of way. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that the more boring pieces will hit the resale market, but that's kind of where my view of japanese clothing needs to be focused on when I'm being realistic. the UE side of things has a lot of great offerings though. the pieces you own are both really really cool.

I do like their takes on the double rider in nylon and cotton though. I've got a black cotton one and it's almost like it's made of a suiting fabric: its a subtle pinstripe and has a very structured construction.

also, looks like they've got some really cool prints and cut & sew/blocking for this season.

edit:
Image

all i have on my phone is this terribly flaxy photo, but maybe it'll give a decent idea.

Image
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Re: The second coming

Postby nick » Wed Apr 23, 2014 6:45 pm

per @ramseames request -

after a pair of ~$70 vis highwater chinos (love them btw) caught my eye on yahoo jp, I went on a little bit of a spree and picked up a couple Uniform Experiment shirts. from a design standpoint, UE hits all the right points when it comes to my personal preferences: take a look at the product page: almost every single piece is in a shade of blue/grey, pieces filled with tasteful cut and sew and fun details. like soph, borderline office appropriate for a young guy, while still having a definite contemporary ""streetwear"" look.

PICS! im very about the shirt on the right - its a "fake popover", check out the spoiler to see what I mean.
Image

Spoiler:
Image
Buttoned - notice the hidden placket on the bottom half
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The hidden buttons are actually snap buttons. cool!
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cubicle selfie for sleeve length :+)
Image
other shirt - just showing how UE goes for that subtle brand flex.
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Mon May 19, 2014 1:28 am

don't think these are particularly attractive or worth the price but it's the first time i've seen any f.c.r.b. on the internet so I thought i'd post. If you're looking to join an elite club here's your in
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:18 pm

Some fcrb on end

Probably crazy overpriced but there's some cool pieces on there
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:22 pm

looking at it with VAT off on the US site its actually cheaper than the jpy pricing
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:26 pm

Oh wow. I could've figured this stuff is normally pretty crazy priced, though. That's kind of part of it I guess.
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:27 pm

@ryan_firecrotch what do you mean by that? Fcrb stands for Football Club Real Bristol. It's a collaboration between Nike and Soph
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Last edited by CleanThug on Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:31 pm

its cheapish for soph and not unheard of for high end nike (gyak, white label, MII NSW).

i want the grey shorts but tbs doesnt have them and I'm not fucking paying duties from end

edit: its on nike.com (smiling)

duble edit fuck i dont see the grey ones
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Re: The second coming

Postby popcorn » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:52 pm

Surprised not to see anything about sophnet x visvim, saw this image somewhere

Image

all google gives me is highsnobiety links, apparently they've done luggage at least once, and footwear at least twice

Image

footwear feels like a mixture of trim/clean textures and silhouettes with fun and comfortable materials, those penny loafers would be ace in a capsule wardrobe cooler than anything I've ever seen, the 'luggage' collection feels similar

Image

Image
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Fri Jun 20, 2014 9:43 pm



this is wacky
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:27 am

soph multitool

Image
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Re: The second coming

Postby stappard_ » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:40 am

fc real bristol thing is completely mystifying
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Re: The second coming

Postby CleanThug » Mon Jun 23, 2014 11:46 am

as a whole or the video?
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Re: The second coming

Postby stappard_ » Mon Jun 23, 2014 1:03 pm

the name and by extension the whole concept
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Thu Jul 17, 2014 9:37 pm

[youtube]JE1gOg54lrA&list[/youtube]
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Fri Jul 18, 2014 10:23 pm




i like this
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Re: The second coming

Postby WussWayne » Sat Jul 26, 2014 4:11 pm

Image

Hey @Ramseames have you handled sophnet work boots before? I was thinking of picking a pair up from this season or last f/w but I'm not familiar with the brand and it's quality. Not sure if I should save up for virgils instead.
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:41 pm

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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:47 pm

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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:59 pm

UE is better again. but both are a bit weak. i'm going to assume hirofumi wasnt in the office the day they did the studded CPs or someting.

as always some diamonds in rough though. reconstructed stuff is killer, white leather alpha is sweet, duck/denim mixed fabric jeans are fun.

thinking about the yellow/blue white line flannel and the navy mixed fabric cargos if the inseam is passable
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Re: The second coming

Postby odradek » Sun Jul 27, 2014 12:28 am

UE looks a bit like a conglomeration of UC stuff from a few years ago + stuff I want to wear now.
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Thu Aug 14, 2014 1:17 am

http://fyidesigndept.com/category/soph

turns out a local (well 1.5 hours away but pemby is within the realm of what i consider home anyway) company has been working with soph for some of their mainline stuff the past few years. the world is small
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Re: The second coming

Postby can- » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:15 am

fcrb 2011 way ahead of its time

Image

I like the new polo shirts. prices are wacko tho, 190 $ for a printed dri fit shirt? SMH
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:17 am

fcrb polos or mainline?
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Re: The second coming

Postby can- » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:17 am

football club
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Thu Aug 14, 2014 2:28 am

idk man i cant see them doing them for cheaper really. those are like what, $145 in jpy? any less would seem weirdly low given where everything else sits
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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Fri Jan 16, 2015 11:04 pm




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Re: The second coming

Postby ramseames » Sat Jan 24, 2015 2:32 pm

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