Spring Picks @ L.L. Bean Signature

How do you jump start a classic brand and capture the wallets of the 20-35 demographic? L.L. Bean launched their new signature line this week inspired by classics from their archive. Alex Carleton preppy hipster guru designed the collection by updating the styling to appeal to a younger audience—No mom jeans in sight. Check out Carleton’s store Rogues Gallery in Portland for more menswear pieces with an extra slather of, I found this in my grandfather’s chest perfectly worn.

I ordered a few pieces and I’m already pretty impressed with the quality. My top pick? The textured pullover (top left)—super soft, great knit and weight— A sweater I can wear now and through the summer on cool nights. A washed in cotton chambray (bottom right) button down is cute tucked in with a rope belt and perfect paired with shorts this summer. The striped scoopneck (upper right) is not part of the signature line but I had to throw it in. Beans makes really great cotton tees. Long and thick cotton. Snag up a few for $24 each before they sell out.

Below a few styled shots from the Signature line. I just want to put this out there…Does anyone else feel like they should have called the collection, “Classic Away Maine” ? In Maine your referred to from “Away” if you’re a tourist or a transplant. The collection oozes blue blood summer-house clothes. I’m not complaining maybe just feeling snarky this morning? I love the new line but it did make me laugh when I first saw the styled spreads of idyllic Maine. Find out more at llbeansignature.com.

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13 Comments

  1. Oh, the new LL Bean collection just makes we want to vom! I’m from Freeport, and I just KNOW these women – yuck-a-roo. Brings back all kinds of wonderful memories of being a part of the scenery as the Lobsterman’s kid, running around behind someone’s idyllic Casco Bay shot..

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  2. I found the fit to be very true to what they describe in their fitting guidelines. I didn’t order any outerwear, though.

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  3. i love the look of this line…i hope the quality is there too. i am wondering about the fit too. i ordered two pieces, and waiting patiently for them to come. crossing my fingers! i love maine and ll bean too.

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  4. I’m curious about the fit–does everything run large or just the trench. How does that ADORABLE sweater fit? I’m not 100% sold looking at the site, though I really wanted to love this line.

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  5. Oooh, I love Rogue’s Gallery, Steven Alan, Dunderdon, and in theory this new LL Bean Signature line. BUT I ordered two pieces, including the shirt you have pictured here, and was disappointed with the reality, although the catalog looks great. The cut of the sleeve is like something out of a home sewing pattern circa 1989. It’s all wrong. Much too big. They need a deeper sleeve cap and more fitted armseye, not to mention a less full sleeve, and a deeper cuff. Sadly, I’m returning both items. I really hope they persevere, though, and get it right, because the world really needs something like this, and so does LL Bean. The design is great, they just need to develop better slopers.

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  6. The thing about preppy is that you have to be all in. I can’t do the loafers AND the khakis AND the oxford. But I was super impressed with Bean’s attempt to refresh its brand. But did anyone else recognize most of the models as JCrew alums? :)

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  7. So funny! Yes, they are nice and they are very “Maine but from away”. I remember years ago a transplant told a group of us young women natives in a job training class we were lucky we didn’t have to fuss about interview clothes because “everybody in Maine just wears stuff from LL Bean.” We politely didn’t tell her that we couldn’t afford Bean cloths unless they had a warehouse sale and neither could anybody we knew except college kids and her. So you’re not being snarky; you just have an awareness of some of the class subtleties most visitors don’t get.

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  8. i like these! they look really versatile and comfortable, and i’ve always like l.l. bean’s quality. thanks for sharing some details! (and yes, signature sounds. . . old, or stuffy or something).

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  9. I have been eying that sweater… glad to hear that you like it! I agree that the photos on the site are kind of hokey, imaginary New England-y. I still like the clothes, though.

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  10. Lands End also has a new line out with the same kind of New England Prep aesthetic.I associate Lands End with matronly clothes, so I’m not even sure how I stumbled onto the new collection, but I like what I see!

    I just ordered the leather hobo bag because it looks like the kind of basic that gets nicer with age.

    http://canvas.landsend.com/canvas/?cm_re=core-canv

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  11. I don’t dig the name, either. Signature sounds high end and expensive – like it’s their premier line of clothing. There’s no outdoorsy feel to it and what it evokes isn’t casual, cool, or relaxed.

    Totally wrong for the brand.

    New site kind of sucks, too. Pretty AA ball when it should be Major League.

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